Direct Mail

The Proof is in the Numbers

At Strata, it’s pretty obvious that we love (and believe in) direct mail and its marketing power, and think it’s an important touchpoint in any multichannel campaign. We could go on and on about why we think it’s great, but we understand that sometimes it takes some hard facts and solid numbers to seal the deal and make you believe in direct marketing, too. You’ll see – the numbers simply speak for themselves.

The Stats

  • For every 36 emails you receive (on average), you get 1 piece of mail in your mailbox.
  • The average lifespan of an email is 17 seconds, compared to direct mail’s average lifespan of 17 days.
  • 59% of US respondents say they enjoy getting mail from brands about new products.
  • 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.

Source for stats above: Compu-mail

  • 73% of American consumers say they prefer being contacted by brands via direct mail because they can read or review the information at their leisure.
  • 41% of Americans of all ages look forward to checking their mail each day.
  • 60% of catalog recipients visit the website of the company that mailed them that catalog.

Source for stats above: Bolger

Direct Mail Stats Infographic

Sealing the Deal

More generally, we believe in direct mail because it’s:

Tangible

Everyone opens mail. Even if you don’t have access to television, internet, or a cell phone, as long as you have an address, you’re reachable through mail. Opening mail is a part of the daily routine for many, and neglected by very few. Direct mail seamlessly integrates into our lives and rituals, so we see it as welcomed rather than intrusive.

Targetable

With direct mail, you can target by geographic location and send your piece to all residences within your selected zip code(s). You have the ability to organize your mailing list by demographics, such as age group, income level, parenthood, pet ownership and more.

Customizable

There are never-ending possibilities when it comes to organizing and developing your content in an effort to present your message to your target audience and lead them to take action. You can use your pieces to inspire immediate purchases by including limited-time offers and copy that conveys a sense of urgency.

Measurable

Incorporating a special offer, online promotional code, or even a website questionnaire into your campaign can make it easy to track responses and measure success. After all, direct mail is proven to be one of the most quantifiable advertising platforms.

The Bottom Line

Direct mail is effective because of its seamless integration into our lives, yet strong presence on our counters. It catches our attention while giving us control as to what we’ll do next as a current or potential customer. That’s why we think, well…we know it’s one of the most effective marketing tactics for reaching large groups of consumers.

Ready to get the most out of your direct mail? Contact us to create a highly successful marketing campaign that incorporates the latest direct mail tricks and trends.

Make Your Direct Mail Thrive with Tracking, Enhancing, and Attributing Results

We’ve said it time and again – direct mail really works. In fact, direct mail open rates can reach up to 42%, which is a lot higher than most e-mail open rates. 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.” While these are excellent stats, we know it’s not always that easy to track and measure ROI from physical mail in the same way you track ROI from your digital strategies. Don’t worry, we’re here to help you out. We believe in not only the importance of direct mail, but in its results – with the right tools and resources.

Be Consistent

First and foremost, consistency is key when it comes to direct mail ROI. To get the most out of your direct mail, make sure it isn’t just direct mail. What do we mean? Weave digital touches into your direct mail – like your social media, digital ads, and website – and make sure everything is connected. With the right direct mail partner or resource, you can take mailing addresses and match them with social accounts, IP addresses, and more to really understand who your audience is and what actions they’re taking. Weaving in digital information can help you share your message before, during, and after your direct mail is sent out – making the chosen brand message consistent and more impactful to your audience.

Not convinced this is all necessary? We are, because combining offline and online tactics is proven to really work. In a recent study, a whapping 68% of marketing respondents saw that combining digital and direct mail increased visits to their websites. Considering the multichannel experience and the customer journey while creating your direct mail will not just increase website visits, but many areas of ROI.

Track

When it comes to getting the most from your direct mail, it’s important to ABT – Always Be Tracking. Not only tracking information and results from your direct mail campaign like you would your digital ones, but tracking the delivery of your mailers – just like you would a package. This will help you know when to prepare the recipient with other messaging before delivery, and when to follow up with them to make the greatest impact. Take it a step further by working with your direct mail partner or resource to send the recipient an “informed delivery” message by USPS to make them aware of their mailer’s arrival, and send them direct links to ROI-rich landing pages. If you haven’t noticed already, every step we’re highlighting truly combines the traditional and digital worlds of marketing.

Attribute Results

If you’re still with us, you’ll see that we’ve created an experience for the recipient along many steps of their customer journey, tracked their direct mail’s physical journey, and have notified them that there’s a special something waiting in their mailbox. So, what’s next? Reporting, recording, and attributing. Without these, you won’t know how to improve upon your direct mail and increase your ROI for next time. Your recipients may respond or perform an action by phone, BRC, personalized landing page (PURL), or in another way, so it’s important that the information is correctly recorded in real-time. The best way to record and store this information is on a platform’s dashboard specifically made for tracking. There are many out there – so find whatever works for you and make sure you use it to your advantage. The chosen platform can help you store names, addresses, ages, and other helpful demographics to assist you in understanding and targeting your true target audience.

You may have some recipients who will visit your website but will not directly respond to your mail. That’s why it’s important to use identifiable URLs that you can easily track, like UTMs, PURLS, or specified QR codes. If these recipients aren’t quite ready to reach back out to you or make a move, you’ll still have a gauge on their interest, and will be able to send them digital ads or e-mails reminding them of your product or service until their ready to take the next step.

Stop Wondering

Instead of continuing to throw mail like paper planes to your audience, track and know if your mailers make an impact. Make sure you’re always examining your data and attributing it. You’ll quickly realize it’s easier than you expected to see what’s working, what’s not, and where you can improve on your direct mail campaigns.

As one of our specialties at Strata, we know that direct mail can be uber effective when using the right processes and tools. The key is always combining traditional and digital to catch your audience’s attention before, during, and after direct mail is in their hands. And, like we said before, never stop tracking and modifying.

To learn more about how to create successful direct mail, check out our direct-mail-focused blogs, “Dimensional Mail: Four Criteria for the Perfect Promotional Item” and “7 Ways to Make Your Postcard Stand Out”, or simply contact Strata. We’ve been doing this for years and would be happy to help you get an ROI rich direct mail campaign started.

How to Make the Most Out of Your Direct Mail

Are you a kindle girl, or a paperback jack and hardcover lover? It may be nice to “always have your books with you” with a digital user interface, but you really can’t beat the touch (and even the smell) of a real book. Ain’t nothing like the real thing. Who knows the journey it’s been on – whose hands it’s been held by? It’s exciting, authentic and holds a story, literally and figuratively. These, among many reasons, are why people ultimately prefer physical books. “67 percent of Americans have read a paperback in the past year, and 39 percent of people only opt for print. Contrastingly, 29 percent of readers use both formats, and only 7 percent exclusively consume books digitally,” (Oprah Magazine).

Does this idea transfer over to the physicality of direct mail? You bet. Unless we’re somehow completely avoiding technology (which these days is impossible), we’re constantly bombarded with digital ads and emails. To be specific, Americans receive an average of 605 emails a week, compared to only 16.8 pieces of mail. Basically, for every 36 emails coming in, only 1 piece of physical mail is received. Physical postcards, packages, pamphlets, or whatever else people can get their hands on all work to cut through the digital noise.

Pages…Chapters…No, Books of Stats

Not only does direct mail stand out among digital mail and ads, but its’ impact lasts much longer. “The average lifespan of an email is 17 seconds, compared to direct mail’s average lifespan of 17 days,” (Compu-Mail). What’s more? Direct mail has some serious ROI…

Direct Mail for Dummies

Here are some best practices if you’re new to direct mail or looking to improve:

Economize Words

As humans, we don’t like to read more than is absolutely necessary (unless we’re looking to get lost in a good book). The best direct mail uses clear and concise points. And, when in doubt, ask one simple question: Is this sentence absolutely crucial to the point/pitch? If it’s not, cut it. The best mailers are short and sweet.

Prioritize Graphics

The best parts of your favorite childhood book were the enjoyable illustrations and unique pictures. The same goes for eye-catching direct mail. Clean, attractive graphics can convey complex information while cutting down on copy. And, don’t forget to keep your brand standards in mind when picking graphics. It will help to remove the guesswork for your recipients.

Consider the End Product

While you’ll want to focus heavily on images and copy, remember to carefully consider format, envelope, finish, feel, etc. – and don’t be afraid to think outside the box (or in this case, the envelope). Remember, humans are tactile beings, and first impressions are lasting ones. Give them that nostalgic feeling they have when physically turning the page, or opening up an envelope or package.

Recommendations & Specifications

Trying to economize mail expenditures and use the most cost-effective option? If so, it’s best to follow the Post Office’s guidelines for postcard mailers:

Must be…

  • Rectangular
  • At least 3.5” high x 5” long x 0.007” thick
  • No more than 4.25” high x 6” long x 0.016” thick

Want to stand out and attract attention?

Consider opting for:

  • Larger postcards (6’’ x 9” or 6” x 11”)
  • Bi-folds, Tri-folds, Iron-cross formats, or Extra-large (9’’ x 12”) mailers
  • Dimensional mail that use boxes or bubble envelopes

Final Edits

A lot of writing, editing, rewriting, and finalizing goes into a good book. The same goes for direct mail. It’s only as good as the considerations you make before sending it. Here are some questions and considerations to keep in mind when creating your next piece of direct mail.

Questions

  • Who is my target audience?
  • What would resonate most personally with my audience?
  • What could I do with direct mail that hasn’t been done already?
  • Am I taking full advantage of personalization?
  • Can I convey my message faster/more clearly?
  • What tangible offering would best capture the attention of my audience?
  • How will they respond or access more information?
  • What response mechanisms will best serve my organization?

Considerations

  • Creativity counts – think about what will stand out in a crowded mailbox.
  • You’re only as good as your data – reliable list compilers make a difference.
  • Response is a direct reflection of the offer – make sure it’s enticing and engaging.
  • Provide as many options for response as possible – PURLs, QR Codes and BRCs are all great options.
  • Tie in a corresponding digital ad component when possible – multiple connections maximize results.

The Paperback & The Kindle

Remember when we mentioned that people saw some serious ROI from combining digital and direct mail? That’s because it’s the best of both worlds – the old nostalgic world, and the new fast-paced world – combined. Marketers have noticed some remarkable returns from the combo, like 40% conversion rates, 68% increased website visits, 63% increased response rates, 60% increased ROI, and more.

So, are you ready to get the most ROI out of your direct mail and cut through the digital noise? Contact us to start brainstorming your next campaign today.

Say Goodbye to Duplicates and Hello to Increased Campaign Success

As marketers, we do everything we can to streamline our campaigns to run as smoothly and efficiently as possible. In the never-ending quest for peak performance, one of the most consistent frustrations we deal with is data quality.

We all know bad data is frustrating to deal with, but beyond that, the reality is that bad data represents wasted effort, and wasted effort represents a loss of money.

We have access to a ridiculous amount of data, and in many ways, that’s a good thing — more data translates to more targets, a better understanding of those targets, and more avenues by which we can interact with them.

The problem is that all data is not created equal. In addition to generally corrupt data, duplicate data is prevalent, including name and address, household, and family (if multiple families live at the same address). 

So, how do we ensure that in a world of abundance, we’re separating the wheat from the chaff?

Step 1: Educate Yourself with Regulative Processes

It’s worth doing some exploring and familiarizing yourself with postal address regulations and how they affect your deliverability rates. Luckily there are numerous services and mail management software that can help you through this.

For example, Coding Accuracy Support System (CASS) is a USPS developed software that ensures mailing addresses are complete and accurate. In other words, it determines if an address actually exists. CASS also standardizes an address into a format the USPS prefers, which is an invaluable tool for creating easily comparable data points when checking for duplicates.

Another great resource is the National Change of Address (NCOA) registry. The NCOA is a dataset of permanent address changes filed by individuals, families and businesses, and can be important for weeding out which address to keep — and which to toss — in your datasets containing multiple addresses for the same customer.

Step 2: Double Check Mail List Data for Common Errors — By Hand

While it’s easy to be lulled into the convenient trap of relying too heavily on software solutions, it’s important to comb through your data — yes, manually — for common errors. Even the most advanced mail management software still requires human interaction and understanding for optimal outcomes.

How? It’s not uncommon for things like commas, missing spaces, or data simply entered in the wrong field to throw CASS off. Simple mistakes can cost you big when it comes to getting rid of duplicate data sets.

Once you’ve used software to get your data into a great starting point, it’s important to remember that that’s all it is — a great starting point. It’s up to you to do the manual work and ensure the data is uncorrupted beyond that.

Step 3: Remove Excess Info from Your Files

Since we’re solely talking about mailing, it’s important to remove as many variables as you can from your mailing lists, and that means dumping the excess information.

This excess information includes things like email addresses, phone numbers, revenue, years in business, etc., all of which aren’t pertinent to your direct mail vendor.

In short, avoid the clutter and dump the details for your mailings. Keep it simple and save that info for later.

Step 4: Choose Your Direct Mail Vendor Carefully

Much like data sets, not all vendors are created equal, and some will prove to be nightmares to work with. This speaks for itself. You want to consider attributes like experience, referrals, and knowledge of the postal regulations.

A good tip? Make sure you’re working with a vendor who proactively takes initiative when it comes to cleaning lists.

Step 5: Enjoy A Job Well Done

Cleaning and getting rid of the duplicates in your mailing list can be a process, but one that is well worth the effort. When it comes to direct mail campaigns, remember: the better the data you put in, the better the data you get out.

Need a hand with your direct mail marketing? We have the knowledge and experience to help you every step of the way. Contact us to see how we can help you design and execute and effective direct mail program.

What’s Working, What’s Not, and How to Adapt

COVID-19 has been impacting us all, and it’s true what they say — we’re all in this together.

To put it positively, it’s been “interesting” to see the impacts this has had on business and marketing.

COVID-19’s General Impact

First and foremost, COVID-19 has impacted the ways consumers purchase — for the time being, they’ve shifted to a recession mentality. On a macro level, this means consumers are temporarily passing on the premium brands in favor of brands offering greater value.

That’s not to say premium brands are doomed in a COVID-19 world.

Premium brands will get through this by aggressively defining their audience and adjusting the ways they engage that audience. As the average customer’s channel mix shifts, brands need to reach the “at home” individual — for the next few months, ditch your OOH efforts and focus on getting to the consumer at home.

Focus on direct mail, email and addressable geofenced digital ads as the primary players in your channel mix.

Making Direct Mail Work for You

There’s a reason direct mail is a marketing standby — it’s effective. It’s also what many brands will lean on in the months ahead. Let’s look at two scenarios in which COVID-19 impacts this high-value channel — B2C and B2B campaigns

In a B2C campaign, COVID-19’s impact on direct mail is actually a boost in visibility. With limited distractions and an audience spending more time at home than ever, direct mail is front and center.

In a B2B campaign, the way COVID-19 impacts direct mail is a bit more complicated — with no one at the office, a standard B2B campaign can fail. Fortunately, with a little extra data prep, they don’t have to. You can contact decision makers directly at home by working with a data source to match your business dataset against a consumer database and send business communications to personal addresses.

And if you’re worried about reaching people at home, don’t be. People want business to continue — in fact, in a recent survey that we conducted, 90% of consumers said that they’d be comfortable receiving B2B solicitations at home.

Finally, a parting thought on direct mail: use it as an anchor in line with other cost-effective strategies, like digital and email marketing. While effective as a standalone, the performance of direct mail is exponentially increased by including it in your omnichannel strategy.

Utilizing Digital Ads and Email Marketing

Speaking of omnichannel strategy, another place where advertising is thriving is within the digital realm. Things like ad space on social media, commercial spots with streaming services, etc. continue to burn hot. The reason for this is pretty obvious — more people are relying exclusively on screens for news and entertainment.

Digital advertisers are also looking at this crisis as an opportunity to assess effectiveness, clean house and reflect on their digital brands. In short, metrics are talking, underperforming strategies are going out the window, and most of the content smart businesses are putting out is routed in engagement and messaging, not new acquisition.

Email marketing, particularly in retail, is still a go despite COVID-19. In fact, some research points to negatives like unsubscribe rates going down while positives like click rates are going up or at least roughly maintaining pre-COVID levels. With that in mind, now is an excellent time to develop and execute your email marketing campaigns either in house of with a trusted vendor.

Tailoring Your Messaging

In the early days of the outbreak and subsequent lockdown, it seemed utterly bizarre to see the marketing world carrying on as usual, running commercials featuring large groups of friends out in public places, while viewers cringed at home, counting the times the actors touched their faces.

Then, almost all at once, there was a major shift.

Marketers began taking on tones similar to PSA’s, reminding people to wash their hands and stay at home while focusing on aspects of their products that aligned with sentiments like “togetherness” or “looking towards the future.” Messaging also began to focus on the ways that purchases helped support the economy and maintain jobs during a time of economic hardship.

At the end of the day, it’s important to recognize that people are bored, anxious and looking for comfort and your messaging, engagement and branding should align with that.

Let’s Face it, COVID-19 is Weird

A grocery store full of face masks is weird. Cleaning products being hoarded is weird. COVID-19 as a whole is weird.

It’s tough to navigate such a strange new landscape, particularly in the business world. Of course, we’ll make it through this — we always do — but it’s going to require adaptivity, confidence and reflection.

At Strata, we’re here to help you with that. If you’re looking for ways to put your brand’s best foot forward, whether that be with direct mail, digital outreach or anything in between, contact us to see what our solutions can do for you.

Effective direct mail means creating a unique user experience.

We’re getting used to being impressed, and not just by a superior product — we’re getting used to being impressed in the ways we’re made aware of that product.

Traditional direct mail is still important — it’s a good way to send follow up mail, surveys, and cover large areas for direct marketing campaigns — but when it comes to selling high-end products and services (particularly in the B2B sphere) traditional direct mail just isn’t as effective as it used to be.

That’s the bad news.

The good news is that there’s a solution to the direct mail rut we may find ourselves in, and that’s the User Experience (UX) Mailer.

What is a UX Mailer?

A UX Mailer is any sort of direct mail marketing effort that sells to a target audience, but does so in a genuinely engaging way focusing on the end user experience.

UX Mailers include pitch-related gifts, tools for viewing the mailer’s content, special die cuts, or a unique response vehicle. Many UX Mailers fit into the category of dimensional mail, but there are plenty of options for 2D UX Mailers.

Some examples of UX Mailers include:

  • A dimensional mailer with a small LED screen that plays a video upon opening
  • A “scratch-off” style mailer, where the user reveals QR codes leading to discounted promotions
  • A flat mailer with a QR code and fold-out cardboard VR headset meant to hold a user’s phone for a first-person product tour
  • A dimensional mailer containing a set of quality headphones to play an audio message, which can then be used with the recipient’s other devices

How to Use UX Mailers

UX Mailers are powerful tools when used correctly. Given the fact that UX Mailers typically require a fairly significant initial investment (more on this in the next section), you’ll want to make sure that your UX Mailer campaign is run as effectively as possible.

In general, best practices generally dictate that UX Mailer campaigns should target a significantly smaller audience than your average direct marketing campaign. This means that your company should focus its efforts on only the highest value prospects and convertible leads. So how small should your target audience be? It depends.

Even large companies employing a UX Mailer campaign frequently limit their target audience to less than 100 prospects, particularly if the UX Mailer is expensive. In more extreme examples, with the right information and projected success of conversion, some UX Mailer campaigns cross over the threshold into the mythical domain of 1-1 direct marketing, focusing all efforts to engage a single target.

On the flip side, there are times where a UX Mailer can be inexpensive enough to broaden the scope of your campaign, focusing on a more traditional direct mail audience. While you’ll always likely pay more for a UX Mailer campaign, there are many options that won’t increase cost prohibitively. For instance, a UX Mailer campaign with special die cuts may cost more to set up initially, but has little-to-no additional cost per-piece, making it a great option to run a larger campaign.

Investment and Return

You knew this was coming: UX Mailers are often a significant investment.

Of course, they’re only as expensive as you choose to make them — there are companies that put actual iPads in their UX Mailers and there are companies that rely on things like QR codes to keep cost down.

The reality is most campaigns fall somewhere in the middle.

For example, a company recently ran a customer appreciation UX Mailer campaign including a Tile key fob. The fobs were sourced in bulk, keeping the cost down to $8 per piece, with the campaign reaching 152 customers.

UX Mailers are an investment, and just like any other investment, their cost should be contextualized in the scope of projected return. With some industry data pointing to dimensional UX Mailers being opened nearly 100% of the time, our experience is that around 19% of UX Mailers result in response.

There’s virtually no other method of outreach with comparable engagement, making UX Mailers a worthwhile investment.

Why You Should Use the UX Mailer

As we’ve touched on, UX Mailers have a distinct set of advantages that boil down to two main points: they have incredibly high rates of engagement and can be tailored to fit most budgets.

Although they are an investment, UX Mailers are undeniably effective, particularly in the B2B sphere. With most B2B deals resulting in $10,000 to $250,000 gross return, the juice is well worth the squeeze.

Are you ready to put your best foot forward with a smart UX Mailer campaign? Visit us at gostrata.com to see what Strata can do for you.

From Long Sales Cycles to Fostering Loyalty, Dimensional Mail Often Works Best

There is a large number of incredible digital opportunities— automated emails, direct correspondence, pop-up ads, video ads. Yet, there’s a challenge in the overabundance of digital competition.

What do you do when the hottest marketing platform the world has ever known — the internet — presents such a substantial challenge?

A smart and savvy solution is to invest more heavily in physical direct marketing and pair it with your digital efforts. Despite the decades-long digital obsession of the marketing world, tactile and experience-rich direct marketing is continuing to succeed where its purely digital counterpart falters.

There’s a reason most industries — from global technology companies and Ivy League Universities to retail stores and your local pizza shop — run direct mail campaigns as crucial parts of their marketing initiatives.

Here are four reasons why:

Digital Overload

Some people refer to it as e-fatigue. Some people have labeled it digital burnout.

While the Internet is an ultra-valuable asset to every flourishing business, it can also be a significant challenge, like when we see too many digital ads. This competition can tire us, resulting in us paying less attention.

In fact, a relatively well-known Microsoft study suggested that between the year 2000 and 2015, our attention span had dropped from 8 to 12 seconds on average.

The challenge with digital isn’t just digital; it’s digital distraction — there are simply too many options immediately available to your audience to compete with.

We can use the idea of a teacher and tutor as an analogy for digital vs physical marketing.

Mass-scale digital marketing is like a teacher trying to educate a large, loud, distracted classroom — he or she may get a few words to especially attentive ears, but most of the students are so distracted by their environment, they’ll likely walk away with nothing.

Physical direct marketing, on the other hand, is more like a tutor that comes to your home, spends one-on-one time with you in an environment with far fewer distractions, and gets you acquainted with the material on a deep and lasting level.

The analogy extends: you don’t only use a tutor, you use a tutor to supplement the teacher — use both digital and physical for best results.

Long Sales Cycles

A place where high-impact physical direct marketing thrives, particularly when digital marketing is used as supplementary technique, is within long sales cycles.

Where digital may be a great way to begin creating brand awareness and invaluable in the consumer learning experience, it can be difficult to close the deal via digital platforms alone.

There are a few contributing factors here. For one, even personalized digital campaigns can lack the personal touch required to build trust and consumer confidence. Rarely does digital alone suffice to propel your audience into the final stages of the sales cycle. Another shortcoming of a purely digital strategy lies in the aforementioned competition for attention online, particularly in the case of social media.

Powerful tactile experiences, especially those delivered in the form of high-value direct mail such as dimensional mailers, can get you over these hurdles by conveying personal interest in your audience. They also keep your product at the forefront of consumer consciousness by entering avenues that competing products may sometimes neglect, i.e. entering their physical realm via the mailbox.

In a long sales cycle, these traits specific to physical direct marketing are invaluable.

Brand Loyalty

Brand loyalty is one of the most challenging aspects of modern-day business. With so much competition, it’s important not only to build a connection with your consumer, but to foster the development of that relationship in unique and thoughtful ways.

One of the best ways to build brand loyalty is through physical direct marketing efforts. This is particularly true when it comes to promotional items delivered via dimensional direct mail. We’ve touched on this before: a dimensional mailer consists of direct marketing materials that come in a box or another, 3-dimensional vehicle.

Not only do these tactile direct marketing experiences – through their dimensional presence – have the power to cut through the static, but they also have the ability to offer unique gifts or other promotional items. For instance, a “thank you” campaign sent out to valued customers can include everything from key chains and water bottles all the way to tablets and other high-end electronic accessories.

This kind of thoughtfulness and unique mailer does something that digital struggles to — it builds a real connection between brand and consumer. It speaks to a brand who truly values a customer and their business.

Influencing Silent Decision Makers

With virtually limitless information so readily available on the internet, more and more buyers have become silent decision makers. This means that most buyers aren’t reaching out to businesses to learn more about their products, instead relying on user reviews and independent research to form their opinions.

Physical direct marketing once again shines here, giving your brand the opportunity to stand apart and reach silent decision makers via a less competitive channel. If you can separate yourselves via physical direct marketing and convert that into an additional opportunity to make your case, you stand a good chance of making a lasting impression.

When it’s time for the silent buyer to pull the trigger, that impression you made with physical direct marketing may make all the difference.

An Invaluable Tool

With physical, experience-rich direct marketing’s ability to bypass digital channel overload, it’s no wonder why marketers consider it an invaluable tool. It possesses a unique ability to retain consumer focus through long sales cycles, building brand loyalty and influencing silent decision makers.

Are you working on a new product launch, looking to close a stalled deal, or simply want to strengthen existing customer relationships? Contact us to learn about our innovative approach to capturing mindshare, enhancing loyalty, and driving more high-qualified leads to the pipeline.

Quick Tips to Help Your New Mover Strategy

Capturing new mover market share depends on immediate outreach using an approach that elevates your business above the rest. This is a receptive audience ready to spend on new products and services.

But retailers face inherent challenges, including a limited window of time and a lot of competition from other businesses. Moreover, evolving consumer purchasing habits demand that retailers adjust traditional marketing approaches.

If you haven’t evaluated the effectiveness of your new mover program recently, it’s time to check that your strategy is up to date.

  1. Direct Mail: Timely, Targeted and Action-InspiringDespite skyrocketing consumer preferences for all things digital, direct mail is still the best method as an initial point of contact for reaching new movers. According to a report from Marketingprofs, an industry research and education firm, 40% of consumers try new businesses after receiving a direct mail piece.
    • Precision in-home dates: Timing is everything. Your “welcome” direct mailer has to reach new residents immediately, or you risk falling to the bottom of the mail pile. Retailers can gain an edge by partnering with a direct mail vendor who’s perfected targeted in-home dates.
    • Clean data and list management: By nature, new mover mailing lists are in a constant state of flux and quickly become stale. Select a list vendor that sources from multiple providers and uses extensive hygiene practices to validate the accuracy of data.
    • Personalized: Personalized direct mail commands higher response, agree industry leaders and researchers such as the Data and Marketing Association. Go beyond first names – mine your available data to include variables such as:
      • Closest store
      • Locator map
      • Mileage to your nearest location
    • Compelling offers: Include a strong call to action that’s hard for new movers to resist, and make it easy to for them to act on. Make them feel welcome and valued – present the offer as exclusive to their status as a new resident. For inspiration, check out this Target Marketing article that analyzes several successful direct mail approaches businesses use to market to new movers.
  2. Cross-channel Outreach to Crystalize Brand Presence
    For maximum impact and continued engagement, new mover programs need strong follow-up via digital channels.

    • Landing pages and PURLs: Directing new movers to eBRCs helps retailers build in-house email lists and track consumer preferences.
    • Segmented email follow-up: Again, relevance and personalization are key: Consumers welcome emails they perceive as providing valuable information or offers, with open rates for segmented emails averaging 14.32% higher than non-segmented emails. Once you start collecting new mover email addresses and information on interests and preferences, you can send targeted offers and information, promote your customer loyalty program and stay in touch to nurture engagement.
    • Online presence: New movers are using the Internet in ever-growing numbers to research goods and services. Establish a strong online presence with:
      • Targeted digital ads served up to households on your mailing list
      • Strong SEO practices
      • Close monitoring of reviews and ratings

Join the Next Generation of New Mover Marketing

Strata Company, a Greater Philadelphia area marketing services and technology solutions company, has 25 years of experience creating and managing multi-channel new mover marketing campaigns. Our SmartMove program merges the power of physical and digital touchpoints so you can quickly reach the right audience and keep them engaged with your brand. Contact us to learn more.

470,000: the approximate number of words in the Merriam-Webster Dictionary.

Your direct mail copy challenge: Find the magic combination that will command the reader’s attention (i.e., dodge the recycle bin) and compel action.

Yes, direct mail writing can be intimidating. But the following steps can help you write direct mail copy that will get noticed – and get your prospects motivated.

  1. Grab Attention with Your Headline
    Many leading copywriters believe in the rule of 80/20 – that writing the headline should take 80% of your effort, and the copy below should take 20%. Why? The headline has to work really, really hard to hook readers. If it falls flat, no one will read past it.
    • Focus the headline around a leading benefit.
    • Build intrigue – tease with just enough information so that it’s impossible to ignore what follows.
  2. Expand (a little) on the Most Important Benefits
    Your body content needs to strike a balance between being informative and being concise. Again, stay benefits-focused, and give readers information that will convince them they need to act on your offer.
    • Tell readers how the product or service will improve their lives.
    • Present information in a logical order.
  3. Be Brief and Readable
    Your words are not the star of the piece. Rather, the recipient should be kept front and center. Copy should focus on their needs, and never compromise readability.
    • Limit the amount of copy in your mailer.
    • Save longer, more detailed explanations for product/service websites, landing pages or brochures.
    • Break up blocks of copy with subheads.
  4. Write for a Persona
    Writing for a persona can help you key in on the needs and motivations of your target audience.
    • Address their specific concerns.
    • Craft copy that connects on an emotional level.
  5. Craft an Irresistible Call to Action
    Finally, you need to ask for the reader’s business with your call to action (CTA).
    • Give the reader direct, specific instruction on how to take the next step.
    • Use active verbs.
    • Imply urgency – the offer will expire; they can’t afford to delay; time is running out; be one of the first, etc.
  6. Test to Find Out What Works Best
    A simple A/B test – where a control group receives a version with one varying element – can help you uncover the most effective copywriting approaches for your audience.
    • A/B test elements such as headlines, CTAs and envelope teasers.
    • Track results, and refine future mailings accordingly.

Going Multichannel?

Ensure you align your direct mail copy with other pieces of the campaign – emails, landing pages, digital ads, broadcast media. The message needs to be cohesive, or you’ll confuse your audience.

Strata Company, a Plymouth Meeting, PA-based marketing services and technology solutions company, has been a leader in direct mail marketing for 25 years. Our multichannel marketing programs combine award-winning creative with superior data practices to attract the right prospects and keep them engaged. Contact us to speak with one of our direct marketing experts.