In a world where the first thing most of us do in the morning is check our emails and social media channels you’d be crazy to think that ‘Snail Mail’ has a place in your marketing mix, right? Surely the way to go is digital?

Is direct mail dead?

Well, according to statistics from The Radicati Group, 205 Billion email messages were sent every day in 2015; that’s 2.4 Million every second. The average office worker received 121 emails per day!

That’s a lot of noise and with average open rates of between 13% and 28% depending on what sector you’re in, what’s the chance of your message being seen?

If you’re not doing direct mail campaigns you’re missing a trick.

A well-produced bit of mail delivered through the post is one of the most valuable and effective pieces of marketing you can do.

According to Asendia, 82% of Direct Mail is opened and it really isn’t difficult to believe.

I love getting post. I received a big box just the other day from a marketing company. I suppose it was the size of an average shoe box but nice and sturdy. No fancy wrapping, just the box. I was intrigued.

Do you think I threw it in the bin or opened it?

A man wrapping a medium-sized box in brown paaper

Inside the big box was a little box and a note. Simple perhaps but I was hooked. Inside the little box was a calculator and the note told me if I used them I could work out the Return On Investment on the calculator. Cute and I’ve still got the calculator on my desk. The big mistake unfortunately was that the calculator wasn’t personalised with their logo, so I don’t have the name of their company on my desk 24/7.

Man holding some brightly coloured postcards

Here are a couple of tips for a successful DM:

– Tie the conceptual idea behind the DM to a wider campaign – perhaps set up a competition if people post a picture of the DM on social media with a certain hashtag

– Support the campaign with a wider marketing mix for a bigger impact

– Give the recipients a clear call to action. What do you want them to do?

– Put something quirky in the envelope or box – rather than just sending a brochure. People are more likely to be intrigued and open it.

– Make the item contextual. Like the calculator above, use the item to sell your story


– Follow up

– Don’t just focus on new customers, word of mouth is a powerful thing, so try a DM campaign on your existing customers