Direct mail marketing even proved its effectiveness amongst the digital generation. A 2021 USPS study found that 60% of millennials believe the information in direct mail is more useful to them than email, with 80% looking forward to seeing what they receive each day.
What is it that makes direct mail marketing so resilient and effective?
- The mailbox isn’t as inundated as an inbox.
- People don’t “block” information from their mailbox like the 42.7% of internet users who use ad blockers.
- Messages don’t get lost in the clutter of a social media feed or ad-infested website.
Even though there is less competition for attention, successful direct mail campaigns aren’t as simple as printing 20,000 mailers and sending them to every address in a 100-mile radius. These “spray and pray” campaigns addressed to “Current Resident” will go straight from the mailbox to the trash can.
Modern direct mail marketing requires speed, personalization, hyper-targeting and agility.
Before we discuss these key requirements for direct mail marketing in 2022, let’s highlight some key events that happened in 2021 and how they’ll impact the future of direct mail marketing.
Direct Mail Marketing and COVID
One of the biggest takeaways from 2021 is that consumer behavior is in flux. Life, work, school and routines were all disrupted by the pandemic. As the new normal sets in, so too are new consumer behavior patterns, so it'll be important to closely monitor changes in consumer behavior and adjust your strategy accordingly to seize opportunities in 2022.
For example, when the pandemic caused offices to empty and most of the workforce to be sent home, direct mail volume plummeted during Q2 of 2020. However, even with the drop in volume, there were record levels of mail sharing and the life span of direct mail (aka how long people hold on to a direct mail piece) skyrocketed to nearly 70% during the same time period.
Prior to the pandemic, direct mail volume in the U.S. has been declining (mainly due to the increased adoption of paperless billing). But the drop in volume resulted in less competition, causing direct mail response rates to increase by 194%.
It’s important to note that direct mail volume should not be used as an indicator of its effectiveness, but rather an indicator of opportunity–and this unsaturated communication channel is ripe with opportunity.
Jet Mail’s Top Tip: Take advantage of this unsaturated marketing channel and get the undivided attention of your target audience. Direct mail integrates and amplifies digital marketing efforts extremely well, so be sure to capitalize on the opportunity to promote your presence on digital channels. For example, boost response rates up to 63% by sending a follow-up email approximately one week after a direct mail piece was delivered and be sure to take advantage of Informed Delivery in all of your direct mail campaigns.
Direct Mail Marketing and USPS Changes
The USPS announced a second price increase in August of 2021. Even though a price increase may not seem ideal, it came with an increase to the maximum size limit for presorted first-class postcards--which increased from 4.25” x 6” to 6” x 9”. The size increase can benefit your direct mail marketing plans since the price for mailing larger postcards (such as 5” x 7” and 6” x 9”) actually decreased.
Jet Mail’s Top Tip: Combat the price increases of 2021 by auditing your mailing lists to make sure they are as clean and up to date as possible. This will help avoid undeliverable addresses and maintain a high ROI since you’re only paying for postage to deliverable contacts. Need help with this? Our team of data management experts can work with you to ensure your direct mail lists are in pristine condition for 2022.
Now that we’ve covered some of the events of 2021 that will impact direct mail marketing in 2022, let’s cover the key strategies that you should implement as part of your 2022 direct mail marketing plan.
Key Ingredients for a Successful 2022 Direct Mail Marketing Plan
Personalization creates a one-to-one connection that humanizes your brand and keeps your business top of mind–and the power of personalization cannot be emphasized enough.
- Personalized direct mail campaigns see 135% higher engagement rates than non-personalized campaigns.
- Simply adding the recipient’s name to a direct mail piece can increase response rates by 135%.
- 93% of businesses saw an increase in revenue when they focused on an advanced personalization strategy.
Modern printing technology like variable data printing (VDP) allows you to personalize each individual mail piece with a variety of variables, including:
- Name and location.
- Taglines and offer.
- Color, image and logo.
This gives marketers the ability to create irresistible offers tailored specifically to the needs and preferences of the individual.
For example, if your customer just purchased a coffee table, you can send a mailer thanking them for their recent purchase and a discount for matching end tables. Use data from your CRM to determine what your customers have already purchased and what they’ll want or need next.
The more customer data you have, the more you’re able to segment and hyper-target your direct mail campaigns. Leverage your customer data and the power of personalization to the fullest extent by segmenting your audience based on demographics like age, sex, ethnicity, salary, marital status, location, occupation or purchase history and tailor the content of mail pieces accordingly.
Data hygiene and data scrubbing are important steps to take to ensure the information you have on your audience is correct. Jet Mail’s expert data processing team has more than two decades of experience managing complex data. Lean on us to help append mailing lists, eliminate costly duplication, and keep current with National Change of Address (NCOA) processing to optimize the ROI of each campaign.
3. Speed to Market and Agility
Given that there are still a lot of unknowns in 2022, you should be able to adapt your direct mail marketing plan for unforeseen changes or events. This will allow your business to capitalize on new markets and customers.
But adding speed and agility to your 2022 direct mail marketing plan isn’t easy to execute without the proper infrastructure, technology and resources in place. Working with an all-in-one marketing fulfillment partner will expedite production and delivery times by streamlining your direct mail marketing program.
Jet Mail’s print, mail, fulfillment and distribution capabilities are under one roof (including our in-house USPS facility), so you can quickly deploy hyper-targeted, personalized direct mail campaigns that literally get into the hands of interested customers first.
Partner with Jet Mail for Your 2022 Direct Mail Marketing Plan
Since 1993, Jet Mail has orchestrated and executed attention-grabbing direct mail campaigns that build brands and generate new revenue. Contact our experts today and let us create a customized solution that supports your 2022 direct mail marketing plan.