Direct Mail Marketing

A Strata YouTube Original Series

In today’s marketing world, if you’re not using variable printing on your print marketing materials, you may be falling behind. Why? Variable printing can completely transform your marketing campaigns and increase their effectiveness. With even the simple addition of a name to your direct mail, response rates can increase by 135%, and purchases can increase by 62%[CP1] !

If you’re new to variable printing, want to know more about it, or even if you’re somewhat experienced in it, it may be a good idea to follow along as our Data Graphic Specialist, Bryan Mathes, answers several frequently asked variable printing questions. We’ve written out some of his interview answers below, and the full interview can be found here.


Q: What is variable printing?

A: Variable Data Printing is printing that uses data to create personalized or unique print and mail pieces. Some common examples of variable data are things like names, addresses, monetary amounts, images, QR Codes, and other kinds of data that could be made specific to a person or product.

Q: Why is variable printing so important in today’s marketing world?

A: People really like to feel seen, heard, and special. They don’t want to feel like just another face in the crowd or one more number that may or may not make a purchase. Personalized print and mail pieces have much greater impact on the recipient than generic ones.

Q: What are the main benefits of variable printing?

A: Most obviously, variable printing gives you personalization down to the recipient level. Every printed piece can be totally different from the next one depending on your variables and what they control.

As we said above, Bryan answers these questions in more depth throughout the full interview, and he also covers the following the questions:

  • When should I use variable printing versus regular/generalized print practices?
  • What do I need to get started with variable printing?
  • What are the most common variables used/changed in variable printing?
  • How much, on average, does variable printing improve response rates?
  • Are special/specific printers needed for variable printing?
  • What is important to keep in mind when creating variable data files?
  • What are some signs of a good variable printing partner?

View the full interview by clicking the image below. And, feel free to explore our blog and YouTube channel for more information and printing tips!

If you’d like to connect with our experts or have additional questions, contact us today! Our team would be happy to help you make smart happen.

A Strata YouTube Original Series

In a highly digital world, direct mail remains a powerful way to connect with your audience. In fact, print is a great way to keep your customers connected by breaking up your digital campaigns with the physical! In Strata’s latest YouTube video, we sit down with Rob Krischker, one of Strata’s Strategic Sales Representatives, as he answers several frequently asked questions surrounding direct mail marketing and talks through how it can enhance your future marketing campaigns. See below for a snippet of the full YouTube video

Does direct mail still work?

The short answer is…yes, of course it does! The biggest reason is because it always has and still delivers a measurable return on investment.

When is the best time to send direct mail?

Some things to consider are your goals, busy seasons (for you, your competitors, and others sending mail), and any time sensitivity surrounding your mail.

How do I decide on a direct mail size & fold?

This also heavily depends on your goals. But, at the very least, I’d recommend a size, fold, and dimension that stands out from a #10 envelope (which is the size and format of most of your mail).

In the full interview, Rob answers the questions above in more depth, and covers the following questions:

  • Who should I be sending my direct mail to?
  • What’s the difference between direct mail and junk mail?
  • What’s a key part of direct mail that’s becoming more important each year?
  • Why would I choose direct mail over just email, digital ads, or other digital tools, and what’s the value of including direct mail in my multiple touch points?

You can view the full interview by clicking the image below. Also, feel free to explore our blog for other direct mail tips and stats!

If you’ve got any additional questions or want to connect with our experts, contact us today and we’ll help you make smart happen.

A Strata YouTube Channel Original

In our last few blogs (and their corresponding YouTube videos) we’ve gone over the basics of new mover marketing, how to choose the right partner, and some steps to get started. Now, it’s time to take a deeper dive into how you can specifically utilize new mover marketing in the grocery industry and what channels and workflows work best.

A Quick Review of New Mover Marketing

To give you a brief refresher, new mover marketing is a specific, niche marketing tactic that’s designed to reach new residents in your area. It’s one of the most effective ways to bring in new customers that have just recently entered your specific target market. When it comes to new movers, they’re nobody’s customer, yet – so it’s an effective tactic to make a good first impression at the same time they’re looking for your product or service.

What do New Residents Really Want?

To answer the question, new residents are looking for “reliables”. These are goods and/or services that new movers can depend on daily, weekly, monthly, or even yearly. Since they’re new to the area, they’re usually unsure where to start. When it comes to grocery stores, sometimes there can be almost too many options for consumers to choose from. Because of this, you, as a grocery store, are in constant competition with other stores near you. That’s why it’s so important for your grocery store to be the first to reach out and make the consumer aware of your store – before competitors – and show them you’re close by. With immediate outreach, they’ll see you care, are convenient, and have quality goods.

The Best New Mover Channels for Grocers

We’ve deemed ourselves experts in new mover marketing all around – and we’re very practiced in some of the best channels and workflows for grocers (specifically) to reach new movers. One of the best channels you can take advantage of is direct mail. We know direct mail to be vital to the success of new mover campaigns, especially those of grocery stores. When mail is executed correctly, with personalization and attribution tactics, it can cut through all the digital noise and stand out in the mailbox. As we’ve mentioned in past blogs and videos, the average response rate for direct mail can be up to 50% more effective than those of email blasts, so it’s definitely worth your time and money!

Like we hinted at above, not all direct mail is created equal, so we suggest that those in the grocer industry send a “welcome handshake”. This is either a 6×9 or 6×10 postcard or bifold that allows your store to be introduced and represented in the best way possible. Again, the key to a good direct mail campaign is making sure it’s personable and actionable. With personalization and calls-to-action, you can welcome new movers to the neighborhood by first name and provide a personalized offer, which they can access by QR code or PURL. Another option? Provide a personalized coupon that they can redeem in-store, upon their first visit. If you want to go a step further in terms of personalization, include a map that shows the location of your store relative to their new residence. Generally, you want to make it as easy and enticing as possible for new movers to choose and visit your store.

What’s Next?

With this quick read, you now have a look into one of the top grocery industry channels to utilize for your next new mover campaign. But – it doesn’t stop there! We still have more suggestions when it comes to the best channels and workflows for grocery establishments like yours. Head over to our YouTube channel, where you’ll hear these suggestions from Connor, a member of Strata’s Strategic Sales Team. Or, if you’re ready to take these new mover marketing steps with Strata, contact us today.

A Strata YouTube Channel Original

In our last three blogs (and their corresponding YouTube videos) we’ve gone over the basics of new mover marketing. It’s important to remember that new mover marketing can differentiate between industries, so the best plan of action for specific business types may not be the same as others. In this blog and its corresponding YouTube video, we’re taking a deep dive into how you can specifically utilize new mover marketing in the healthcare sector – as well as what channels work best.

A Quick Refresher on New Mover Marketing

To give you a brief refresher, new mover marketing is a specific, niche marketing tactic that’s designed to reach new residents in your area. It’s one of the most effective ways to bring in new customers that have just recently entered your specific target market. When it comes to new movers, they’re nobody’s customer, yet – so it’s an effective tactic to make a good first impression at the same time they’re looking for your product or service.

What are New Residents Actually Looking For?

To answer the question, new residents are on the lookout for “reliables”, which are goods and services they can depend on daily, weekly, monthly, or even yearly. The healthcare industry is full of these “reliable” services – and these services are much different than those of grocery stores and restaurants. Customers will more likely choose any grocery store or restaurant to at least check out and maybe turn into their new “go-to” spot. If it ends up that they don’t like the spot – it’s really no big deal. They’ll move on and find another. With healthcare, most people don’t want to “try out” 4 or 5 doctors/healthcare services until they find one they like. In general, it’s a lot more work to fill out paperwork and questionnaires at healthcare offices, and most people only want to do that once.

Potential patients want to feel important and valued, so it’s key to be the first to reach out. When you reach out – first, the potential patient can get to know you and your system, while ensuring that you’ll be there in their times of need.

Best New Mover Healthcare Campaign Channels

Based on our years of expertise and data collection, we’ve compiled a list of what we think are the best channels to utilize when reaching out to new movers to hopefully turn them into patients. The first channel we recommend utilizing is direct mail. The average response rate for direct mail can be up to 50% more effective than that of an email blast, when done correctly. For a direct mail campaign to be done correctly, there must be some aspect of personalization, multiple response vehicles (such as QR codes and PURLs) and accurate data lists. The key to quality, effective direct mail is incorporating more than one touchpoint. If you’re able to send more than one direct mail piece, your potential patient will be consistently reminded of you and your business.

The next channel we recommend utilizing? Digital advertising. Targeted, focused ads can show potential patients that you’re close by and welcoming new patients. A benefit to using digital advertising? The level of precision. With digital ads, you can measure performance through impressions served and ad clicks. If you pair with the right new mover marketing partner for your business, you’ll be able to see how many and which customers converted due to your digital ads. This real-time data is vital to the success of your campaigns. It allows you to see what campaigns are working, which ones are not, and make the necessary adjustments on the fly rather than once the campaign is over.

What’s Next?

You now have some potential, optimal channels to utilize as a part of your next new mover campaign. But it doesn’t stop there! We still have more suggestions. Head over to our YouTube channel (by clicking the thumbnail below) to hear from Rob, a member of Strata’s Strategic Sales Team. He’ll fill you in on the rest of our channel recommendations. If your healthcare system is ready to take these new mover marketing steps with the team at Strata, contact us today.

A Strata YouTube Channel Original

In our past two blogs and their connected YouTube videos, we’ve given you a ton of basic information on new mover marketing. Now, it’s time to get into the first steps of starting a new mover marketing campaign. If you’re not super familiar with new mover marketing, it can be difficult to determine where and how to start, but we’ll lead you through the first things to do and ensure you’re well prepared.

A Quick Refresher on New Mover Marketing

To give a brief refresher, new mover marketing is a specific, niche marketing tactic that’s designed to reach new residents in your area. It’s one of the most effective ways to bring in new customers that have just recently entered your specific target market. When it comes to new movers, they’re nobody’s customer, yet- so you must make a good impression at the same time they’re looking for your product or service.

First, Answer the Question – Is a New Mover Campaign Right for Your Company?

New mover marketing is continually gaining popularity, and fast. It’s currently up 3% since last year, despite any economic rough patches. Why? Because people are always moving. Whether it’s for a new job, family changes, the need to start fresh, or anything else – and that will never change. When someone moves to a new area, they’re almost solely focused on unpacking, organizing, and settling in. They’ll heavily rely on word of mouth (WOM) marketing and other advertising to learn and figure out all their new go-to spots.

However, all this doesn’t mean that new mover marketing is fit for every business. It’s important to realize how (and if) your business can benefit from new mover marketing, and when another type of campaign would make more sense. At Strata, we typically say that if your product or service is needed within the first 6 months of a move, you should be targeting new movers. Anything within that 6-month mark would be something that new movers need in their day-to-day lives after a move. For example, think grocery stores, dentists, vets, salons – the list is endless. On the flip side, anything after that 6-month mark will typically be something they already own/have and are looking to buy new, now that they’re settled in. A good example of this? A new car. The majority of people don’t move to a new town and automatically search for and buy a new car. New mover marketing is all about the new movers’ priorities, so it’s important to understand where your business falls within those priorities.

Start with the Right Data

The use of data is incredibly important for new mover marketing, but it’s even more important to target the right people rather than all the people. You want your efforts to pay off – so sending new mover campaigns to residents who’ve already been established for years or have moved within the same zip code will more than likely be a waste of your time (and money). Sometimes, a smaller list will produce higher ROI, since you’re targeting actual, definite, new movers. Make sure you work with a reliable and well-versed company to ensure quality data over quantity of data. To learn more about the importance of quality over quantity, check out this blog.

What’s Next

Now you have the first few steps to starting your new mover campaign – but don’t stop there! In the video below, Connor, a member of our Strategic Sales Team at Strata, will go into the next set of steps you’ll take to create the best new mover marketing campaign possible. Check out the video by clicking below, and if you’re ready to take these first new mover marketing steps with Strata, contact us today.

Untrue & Debunked

With years of experience, we’d say we’re experts in direct mail marketing. But we’re not just the mail people. We provide highly impactful direct mail marketing that cuts through today’s digital noise to deliver a tactile experience and leave a lasting impression. That’s why we’re well versed in all of the misconceptions about direct mail floating around out there, and can tell you exactly why they’re untrue. Follow along as we debunk the 6 misconceptions of direct mail.  

Misconception 1: Direct mail is past its heyday

Once in a while, we hear people speculate and assume that direct mail is past its peak – but just because direct mail has stood the test of time, doesn’t make it outdated. It’s been around for a while for a reason, and has evolved and changed over time – with the times. In fact, in a recent IAB survey, six out of ten marketers prefer direct mail over other offline channels and still include it in their direct marketing strategy today. 

These days, direct mail breaks through the digital noise and is unique and different than other marketing tactics. It brings about nostalgia, as people enjoy the feeling of paper in their hands, similar to enjoying paperback books over kindles. Plus, for every 36 emails you receive (on average), you get 1 piece of mail in your mailbox. The possibilities are quite endless, with many exciting design opportunities and options. Really, direct mail is only boring and old if you make it that way. 

Misconception 2: Compared to other tactics, direct mail doesn’t provide ROI 

This one couldn’t be further from the truth. Don’t believe us? Here are just a few stats to back us up. The average lifespan of an email is 17 seconds, compared to direct mail’s average lifespan of 17 days. Up to 90% of direct mail gets opened, compared to only 20-30% of emails. Per USPS, 98% of people check their mail daily and Americans spend upwards of 30 minutes with their mail on a single occasion. Direct mail open rates can reach up to 42%. Recipients of direct mail also “purchase 28% more items and spend 28% more money than people who don’t get that same piece of direct mail.” Direct mail gets response rates 10 to 30 times higher than digital channels, according to the DMA (Direct Marketing Association). 

Basically, direct mail usually does very well in terms of ROI, and it can (and should) be tracked – so make sure you’re getting the most out of it by making it trackable with the use of digital touchpoints. 

Misconception 3: Direct mail marketing is expensive 

When people think of print, they sometimes think of high-cost, but that’s not always the case. If you have a quality list and are getting the most out of each mailer you send, direct mail won’t seem all that expensive. What do we mean by a quality list? If you’re sending to strategic, particular contacts – not just any contacts, your ROI will be worth the price. 

Additionally, print often gives you more for your money while other marketing practices alone may not (for example PPC, social media ads, email marketing platforms, and more). According to the stats, mail marketing is much more likely to be seen and paid attention to. 

Misconception 4: Millennials and younger don’t like or pay attention to direct mail 

Direct mail isn’t just effective for older audiences. Actually, 73% of American consumers (in general) say they prefer being contacted by brands via direct mail because they can read or review the information at their leisure. And, 41% of Americans of all ages look forward to checking their mail each day. 

Millennials, specifically, like to feel important and seen, so the personalization opportunities of direct mail make for great millennial marketing. To add to this, many millennials and Gen-Z-ers have digital fatigue and find taking a “break” with print to be often enjoyable, and it “should be no surprise that those raised on the internet are best able to tune out online ads.” They also have shown to have a lot more trust in print resources than in digital. 

Misconception 5: Direct mail works on its own and doesn’t integrate with other channels 

These days, direct mail is actually an excellent touchpoint among many, especially when conducting a multichannel marketing campaign. And, we’d even say that combining tactics, even if it’s just two, is usually the way to go. In a recent study, a whapping 68% of marketing respondents saw that combining digital and direct mail increased visits to their websites. 

So, how do you integrate physical with digital? By using a URL of a landing page or website, a PURL (personalized URL), BRC (business reply card), or a QR code. Any of these can be used to lead the viewer to a digital touchpoint. These can all also be used to measure attribution and better understand your target audience, and the emails and other information acquired from BRCs or online landing page forms can be used for email marketing, targeting customers with digital advertising, and sending further communication. 

Misconception 6: Direct Mail = Junk Mail 

Unlike junk mail, direct mail is focused, targeted, relevant, ROI-producing, and uses a quality send list. For more on why direct mail isn’t the same as junk mail, check out our blog, “Direct Mail vs. Junk Mail”, here. Strata can be a resource for direct mail with a surgically targeted list of prospects that are not only more likely to have a need for your project or service, but are also more likely to respond. 

Now that it’s a bit clearer that direct mail is relevant, effective, and can be a huge part of the bigger picture of a marketing strategy, you may be interested in giving direct mail marketing or multichannel marketing a try. If so, give us a call. 

A Strata YouTube Channel Original

In one of our recent blogs and its connected YouTube video, we went over the basic ideas behind new mover marketing. Now you may be thinking, what do I do with all this information? The next step is choosing the right new mover campaign partner. It can be overwhelming deciding on a marketing or new mover business that’s right for you to partner with. Luckily, we’ve compiled a list of all the different qualifications you should be looking for in a partner. 

What’s New Mover Marketing Again?

As a quick reminder, new mover marketing is a specified, niche marketing tactic that’s designed to reach new residents in your area. It’s focused on bringing in new customers that have recently entered your target market. Why’s it so important – and furthermore, why does it work? It helps your company make a strong first impression at the same time someone is looking for your service. 

The Qualities that Make a Good Partner

You don’t want to just choose a random new mover partner or even the first one you stumble upon. It’s important to put thought and consideration into your choice, so that you can make the best decision for your business. Make sure your partner has a bit of background on your company and understands your budget, time, size, and end goals. Remember, what you put into your search is what you’ll get out of it.

What if I Still Don’t Know Where to Start?

While you might have tons of information in front of you, deciphering this information and sifting through it all can be difficult and overwhelming. Here are a few things to do to make your search just a bit easier. 

First, figure out the size of your industry, how sales have been, and what goals you want to set. All of this will allow you to pick a business that’s best suited for your type of company. The more information you can collect, the easier it’ll be to compare the strengths and weaknesses of each potential partner. 

Additionally, you’ll definitely want to choose a partner that has a focus on lists and good data. This data should include demographics, psychographics, behavioral, and business-to-business firmographic information. The more specific data you can get, the better you’ll be able to target new movers and bring in more loyal customers!  

While all this might seem like a lot to tackle, it’ll be worth it in the end when you have successful and effective new mover marketing campaigns.  

Next Steps

You now have a baseline of how to choose the right new mover campaign partner for your business, but it doesn’t end there! Be sure to watch the video below, where you’ll hear from Rob, a member of our Strategic Sales Team at Strata. He’ll explain choosing a partner that best represents your business, in a bit more depth. Or, if you’re ready to choose your next new mover campaign partner and think it may be Strata, contact us today. 

& Why They Matter

As you may know, new mover marketing is a big segment for Strata and an offering we’re quite proud of. We believe we do it best – not only because of our experience and skill, but because of the multiple channels we use, the data we provide and incorporate, and the digital touches we implement. We’ve had trust in, and have been executing, great new mover campaigns for several years now. It’s no wonder we have an eye on new mover trends that may arise and behaviors within this segment – but we’re not sure anyone predicted or was prepared for the shift in the new mover market that happened at and after the onset of the pandemic. Today, we’re looking at how the new mover market has changed since March of 2020, and the increased need for new mover marketing solutions that it’s caused. 

Stats You Need to Know

To get started, we wanted to give you a few recent new mover statistics to take in and think on: 

  • A fifth of US adults moved or knew someone that did due to the pandemic. 
  • Over 110,000 people moved away from New York City between February and July of 2020. 
  • 487% more people moved out of NY in 2020 than in 2019. 
  • Although there was no “exodus” away from urban areas that some were claiming, people did and do seem to generally be “drifting towards the suburbs”. 
  • Families have mostly chosen to move to the suburbs, while those living alone have more often chosen to move to metropolitan areas (In the first half of 2021, 7 in every 10 people who moved into urban areas were those living on their own). 
  • 35% of moves related to Covid-19 happened because of financial hardships. 
  • 36% of movers in a recent study claimed their reasoning for moving to a new place was because they felt safer there. 
  • 10% of them indicated that they moved to places with less stringent Covid-19 restrictions. 

Overall, the pandemic has shown to accelerate some moving trends that have already been underway – and also create a few new ones. This, of course, has also had an impact on the effectiveness of new mover marketing (marketing specifically targeting new residents in your area). 

What’s Causing all the Movement?

There are several reasons people are moving, some of them which we stated in the statistics above – and others that we’ll get into now. First and foremost, a big reason many have moved and are moving is financial stress. Many are moving to less expensive housing and apartment living to cut costs during these financially tough times. Additionally, apartment amenities or “big city” expenses that were previously valuable became almost meaningless during the peak of Covid-19, causing apartment-dwellers to rethink their living expenses. 

Due to increases in work-from-home life and more flexible working hours and situations, people are craving more space. Because of this change, many are moving to larger spaces where they can work more comfortably. Additionally, they’re moving to where they truly want to be instead of where they previously “had” to be for their in-office employment. 

For some people in different areas around the country and different industries within the workforce, finding employment during the pandemic has been tough, so this has caused some to find employment elsewhere and relocate. 

And lastly, throughout the pandemic, the realization or reminder of the importance and need for family support during times of crisis and distress has been prominent – so many have moved and are still moving to be closer to the ones they love. 

Overall – no matter where, when, or why they’re moving, people are definitely on the move since the onset of Covid-19. 

How These Numbers (And the Causes Behind Them) Make Marketing to New Movers Essential

As you can probably imagine, as people move out of your area, you lose those customers, but as people move in, the opportunity arises for new customers to replace the old. So, more movers mean more new opportunity – but not if a competitor snatches them up by getting to them first and making a good impression. 

That’s why it’s so important to be the first to put your brand in front of this niche audience, and to deliver quality marketing that welcomes, attracts, and entices them. New mover marketing programs are made to keep you connected with these new residents on a consistent basis, so that you’re never missing out on a new customer that, if targeted correctly, could become a loyal, repeat one. 

Strata’s program, SmartMove, is a robust, multichannel, multi-touch, new mover marketing program that helps you find the right time and place to reach your target audience, right as they move into your surrounding area. We’ll help you reach this audience throughout their customer journey to build brand loyalty and trust and turn them into long-term, devoted customers. Interested in hearing more of our thoughts on the new mover market, or ready to start your first (or next) new mover campaign? Give us a call. 

 

A Strata YouTube Channel Original

New mover marketing is all the rage right now, and for good reason – but getting started can be a bit confusing if you’re new to the game. That’s why in this blog, along with in our most recent YouTube video, we’ll help you achieve a clear understanding of what New Mover Marketing is, and how it could be used for your business. First, we’ll go over how new mover marketing is defined, what a new mover is, and how this marketing technique can be utilized to reach and acquire new customers. 

What’s a “New Mover”?

In general, a new mover is someone who’s recently moved to your area, and since they’re new, is looking for a new doctor, dentist, grocery, vet, and more, to establish trust in – and hopefully frequent. 

Is New Mover Marketing the Same as Regular Marketing?

In short, no! New mover marketing is a specified, niche tactic that helps you reach new residents in your area while they’re actively establishing new routines and purchasing habits. It’s all about making a strong, quality impression at the same time someone is looking for your services. Different than regular marketing – where you’re mostly informing current customers about new products, services, or promotions, new mover marketing tactics focus solely on bringing in new customers that have just entered your target market. 

The Importance of New Mover Marketing

New mover marketing is one of the best ways to gain and retain more customers. If you really think about it, new movers have no customer loyalty to any specific business – yet. They tend to be more receptive and open-minded to marketing campaigns from any business in their new area. They’re also more likely to listen, and are easily attracted to the first business that reaches out to them (so you need to act fast)! Yet, don’t act too fast, because it’s also important to market yourself correctly and effectively. Remember, you typically only get one shot at a first impression, so make sure you present your business the right way. 

Let’s quickly go through an example of how exactly a new mover marketing campaign helps you attract new customers. Suppose a new family moves into your town. They’re unfamiliar with what services/businesses are available. Soon after move in, they see a mail campaign for your grocery store in their mailbox. Because they’ll (sooner rather than later) need to go get some groceries, they may be more inclined to visit your store instead of another because you reached out and introduced your store and its services, first. As long as you market yourself correctly, you now have a new, and potentially loyal, customer! 

Next Steps

With new mover marketing, the opportunities are endless! Be sure to watch the video, below, to dive a bit deeper. You’ll hear from Strata’s Director of Marketing, Caitlin, as she goes through more specifics. Or, if you’d like to get started on your next new mover marketing campaign and discuss this concept with one of our experts, contact us today