Direct mail marketing did not seem to be a sustainable medium when search engine optimization and other digital advertising strategies began to come into style, as it appeared as though the brand management arena was decisively flocking into the online world. Now, while there is plenty of evidence to support the idea that online marketing, including email advertising campaigns, is taking up more of the average corporate budget than traditional branding activities, this does not mean that direct mail is dead.
Rather, a wealth of companies, especially those operating in certain industries like real estate, law, retail and restaurants, are still using this medium to connect with new prospects and convert them into loyal customers. What’s more, direct mail has remained a popular marketing option for firms that want to continue a traditional approach to branding and separate themselves from newer competition, especially when they already have a strong foundation of mailing lists.
Contrary to popular belief, direct mail marketing is an art that takes plenty of planning, research and strategy to truly make fly, as any flippant or half-hearted attempts can quickly lead to poor recognition among recipients. By looking at the ways in which some of the more successful minds in direct mail marketing go about these procedures, retailers, real estate professionals and others can ensure that their investments in these branding endeavors come back with higher returns.
A surprising print marketing success
The National Retail Federation recently published a blog post that is set to debut in the STORES Magazine April 2015 edition regarding one company’s surprising success with its direct mail marketing program. Pointing out that the retail industry appears to be far more interested in the use of digital mediums such as social media and content marketing, the source explained how Top Hats Formals, a store based in Pittsburgh, launched a unique direct mail campaign that came back with significant returns.
For one, NRF pointed out that the campaign was not in the slightest bit edgy, but still managed to bring back strong results, as the business simply gave a marketing firm a mailing list for prospects who were about to get married and watched the service provider get the job done. In many instances, once retailers have the right list of prospects and loyal customers who they wish to reach, they will have the option of leveraging a professional service vendor to ensure the job gets done correctly.
According to the news provider, the firm sent out roughly 1,000 to 1,500 postcards on average for each of the five months the campaign was running, and managed to generate 77 phone calls and nearly 250,000 Google views of follow-up ads in the process. In terms of direct returns on investment, NRF noted that Top Hat Formals will enjoy roughly $5,000 in additional sales should only half of the calls generated convert to sales.
This was a simple approach that came up big for the small retailer, and other businesses can expect similarly positive experiences when going about these processes correctly.
Real estate print marketing practices
The real estate industry is among the most active in direct mail marketing campaigns today, especially as this medium fits so nicely into the goals of representatives and agents. Real Estate Business Online recently explained some of the ways in which firms can excel through the use of direct mail marketing, affirming that personalization and customization are just as important in this medium as they are in digital ones, and understanding each recipient’s goals and preferences is key to getting it right.
According to the source, information and content included in the mailings should be not only relevant, but also informative, and this will really only be achieved when the company is using data available to better target certain types of prospects. Finally, the news provider recommended personally addressing envelopes for each letter to ensure that the messages seem legitimate, and thus are opened, by the individuals receiving them.
At the end of the day, these simply strategic processes can go a long way in boosting the visibility and engagement of any brand, regardless of which industry it might be competing in.