We’re going to show in this article the reasons why you should consider outsourcing direct mail. If you have recently completed your direct mail fulfillment in-house, then you’ll know that it’s both costly and time-consuming.
If you outsource your workload to a direct mail company, you’ll be giving your business many benefits to enjoy. You should outsource to a company that has several years of experience in this business and has worked with several clients in printing, mailing, and posting their mailshots.
Read on to find out why you should consider outsourcing direct mail for your business.
Why Outsource Direct Mail?
As a business owner, you’ve got so many things to worry about, not to mention the huge responsibility that comes with it. Worrying about your document printing and mailing services can also add up to the stress. This is why outsourcing your direct mail will not only benefit your business but you as well. It will not only save you time and money, but you also get to save some energy by completing the fulfillment properly.
Why You Should Outsource Direct Mail
If you outsource your direct mail, you’ll be able to enjoy the following benefits:
- Access to Latest Equipment – If you outsource to a mail house, you get to have access to the latest equipment without making any investment on your part. The mail house is equipped with state-of-the-art mail fulfillment machines, printers, etc.
- Experts Within the Industry – You could gain access to the experts in the industry if you outsource your direct mail. The company will teach you the most effective way of sending your direct mail campaign. With their vast knowledge in the industry, you’ll surely be able to increase your ROI.
- Improved Accuracy – Remember that even one simple mistake in your direct mail fulfillment could cost you a lot of money and this could greatly affect your business and harm your reputation as well. By relying on the experts, you can be assured that the task will be accomplished as accurately as possible. Thus, you can relax knowing that your mailing process will go smoothly.
- Improved Productivity – By outsourcing your direct mail, you’ll be able to free up some of your time since you no longer need to do this yourself. You can use your time somewhere else. This could improve productivity in the business since your employees can now focus more on doing their own jobs.
- Integrated Approach – If you outsource your work, you’ll be able to integrate all the requirements in one roof. By having an integrated approach to printing, mailing, and postage, you’ll be able to bring significant benefits to your company.
- Less Stress – Outsourcing the task to a professional mailing house that’s capable of handling your direct mail campaign means that the number of tasks that you’ll worry and stress about in running your business will be decreased.
- More Cost Effective – If you outsource your direct mail, you could save a lot of money for your business. Not only that but you’ll be getting the most efficient results for your mailing process, and this could mean that your overall cost will be lowered as well. It’s because there’s no longer a need for you to have an in-house team.
- Postage Discounts – Mail houses offer cheaper postage costs for international direct mailings. You’ll be able to take advantage of the discounts on bulk postage, marketing, packets, letters, brochures, parcels, etc.
- Save Time – By outsourcing the direct mail fulfillment, you get to save your business a lot of time in designing, printing and sending out the campaigns.
Millennials Love Direct Mail
The millennials, or the Generation Y, are those who are born during the periods of 1982 until 2004. This group of people is well adept at sending tweets on social media and using hashtags for marketing instead of direct mail. However, millennials actually love direct mail.
The Phone Generation
Millennials belong to the “generation of social media.” Thus, you’ll find them glued to their Smartphones most of the time. It’s said that if you cannot get in touch with a millennial through their smartphone, then you can’t expect to reach them at all.
The reality is that millennials have actually grown up much faster than what we perceive them to be. Most of the millennials are now aged 30 and above, and many of them are married. They are no longer kids who are stuck to their phones.
While it may be true that millennials tend to own a lot more devices than the older generations, this doesn’t necessarily mean that they don’t welcome other forms of communication as well.
Direct Mail and Millennials
As a business, it’s important to have an online presence in this day and age. You should also have an effective digital marketing solution because without it you’ll easily fall behind the competition. Companies who have ignored the direct mail strategy have slipped behind other areas as well.
Those who are aged between 18 and 24, as well as those who are between 25 and 34 years old, have been shown to have responded to direct mail faster than any other age groups. Both these age groups have also been shown to be more likely to respond faster to direct mail as compared to any other age groups. Both age groups will also be able to most likely reply to a direct mail within a week, which is faster than any other age group.
Also, about 63% of the millennials who have responded to the direct mail piece in a 3-month timeframe have gone on to make a purchase.
Acceptable Response Rates from a Direct Mail Campaign
Measuring the overall success of a direct mail campaign is one way to judge whether your ROI is really worth it or not. Marketers are usually obsessed with the response rates to a direct mail campaign. Although response rates are an important performance indicator, they are not the only measurement for success. It’s also important that you know the key objectives of your campaign during the planning stage. That way, you’ll be able to measure how well these can be achieved at the end of the campaign.
Key Objectives of Direct Mail Campaigns
Below are the most important objectives of a direct mail campaign:
- Increasing awareness of your brand
- Increasing the response rates
- Customer retention
- Showcasing your new products and samples
As stated by MailChimp, although 20% of the readers would take the time to open their marketing campaign emails, as little as 2-3 percent would actually click the link. If you compare this with direct mail marketing, you’ll find that the response rates for direct mail are way higher, between 10-30 times higher compared to the digital campaigns.
While this is important, it doesn’t really talk about the whole picture. We are aware of how well you’re bombarded with many marketing emails in your inbox every single day, and most of them are unsolicited. Thus, receiving a hard copy mail is way more effective.
Kantar Media found out that about 80% of the adults in more than 12,000 respondents in the US who had mails delivered to their homes still kept them even 28 days after delivery. That’s nearly equivalent to 10,000 adults who’re keeping mails after receiving. So although email marketing offers an instant ROI, direct marketing is definitely more effective regarding attracting new customers.
Customers React Better to Personalized Direct Mails
The reason behind this might be due to the emotional response that customers have when receiving direct mail:
60% of the respondents say that this has made a lasting impression on them which makes it easier for them to remember at a later time. About 57% of the respondents said that marketing through postcards has made them feel more important and develops a more authentic relationship.
This just suggests that customers love opening and handling mails, which supports the theory that direct mail is a more preferred way of receiving marketing information. Direct mail is more personal, and more importantly, it’s a less cluttered marketing channel.
One of the most effective ways to improve your direct mail response rate is to provide free samples, include a free trial, and attach discount vouchers or coupons. These methods are the best way to jump-start your direct mail campaign and increase your ROI. However, it’s also important that you’re aware that these customers might only be interested in the freebies that they are getting instead of the actual product you’re selling. Therefore, it’s important that you’re able to differentiate between customers who are loyal to your brand and those who are merely interested in the freebies that they could get.
Acceptable Direct Mail Marketing Response Rates
Knowing your response rate and comparing it against the acceptable direct mail marketing rate may not be easy, but this will also depend on what you’re offering your customers. For instance, targeting customers in a ratio of 1:1 and adding a person’s name on the mail could increase the response rate by up to 50%. Tailoring your mail and samples to capture your market’s audience could increase the response rate to as much as 135 percent. This was according to CompuMail.
Tips to Increase the Response Rates with Your Direct Mail Campaigns
There’s no doubt that sending direct mail is still the most effective way to engage your target consumers. This method has stood the test of time and the challenges that come with modern technology.
Here are some essential tips for increasing your response rates.
- Segment Your Mailing List
Segmenting or splitting your mailing list into certain categories is one way to increase the response rates of your direct mail campaign. Doing this also means you’ll end up sending direct mails that are more relevant to the recipients, and will, therefore, get more response. This method is also the same with personalization.
- Personalize the Mail
At the most basic level, one way to get people to read your direct mail is to address them personally. However, you could go a notch further by including personalized content in your mail. For instance, you can include product recommendations according to the products they have previously purchased. By personalizing your direct mail, you’re letting your customers be aware that you know them, which could possibly increase the response rate.
- Use Professional Design
If your direct mail is looking plain and boring, then you cannot expect people to read or open it. Therefore, it’s important that you make your direct mail look eye-catching, attractive, and professional. The more appealing your direct mail will appear, the more likely that you’ll be able to encourage customers to open and read it. Be very innovative with your mails and put emphasis on the envelope as well, since this is the first thing that customers will notice.
- Include an Incentive
The incentive is what makes people read and act upon a mail. If your goal is to make people read your direct mail and encourage them to patronize your products and services, consider attaching the following in your mail:
- Discount Voucher – Attach a discount voucher.
- Free Trial – You can also offer a free trial for your services.
- Free Product Samples – Include product samples, so your customers will know what your product is like.
Including incentives in your direct mail will give customers more reasons to respond to your campaign.
- Integrate It Into a Wider Marketing Campaign
Another effective way to improve the response rate in your direct mail campaign is by integrating it into your wider marketing campaign. By reaching out to customers via social media, TV marketing, and email marketing, you’ll stand a higher chance at making your message heard. This concept also creates a strategy where the total is bigger than the individual parts, with every area of marketing integrated with one another.
- Include a Strong Call to Action
You cannot expect people to know what they need to do after reading your mail. You have to inform them what to do. Therefore, include a strong call to action. For instance, you can say, “call us now for more information.” This is one way to encourage people to respond to your mail. You may also consider giving them a deadline to encourage them to act urgently. You can include lines like “this offer is available only for a limited time.” This is a great way to spark action from your customers.
- Integration with Technology
Finally, by integrating your mail campaign with technologies like NFC and QR codes, you should be able to increase the response rates from your customers. These technologies will immediately bring people to your website after they receive your mail, making it easier for them to patronize your products or services, sign-up to newsletters, or whatever it is that you want your customers to do!