Has the court of popular opinion persuaded you to ditch paper-based marketing efforts in favor of digital ones? You might want to reconsider. Direct mail is still effective.

In the DMA’s 2015 Response Rate Report, direct mail response rates continue to outperform digital channels – by a lot. Direct mail gets a 3.7% response rate, while both email and social media channels garner only 0.1%.

Impressive, but it still requires forethought. Successful direct mail needs a strategy. It’s not simply creating a postcard and sending it to your house list. After years of creating successful direct mail campaigns, we’ve learned that it comes down to these three things: using the right mailing list, creating a memorable campaign, and tracking results.

  1. Carefully put together your mailing list.

    Mailing lists have become an exact science, and no matter how clever your campaign may be, if it’s not sent to the right audience, it won’t succeed.

    We have several direct mail specialists on staff to help you design the most effective campaign for your needs. They know the latest USPS mailing regulations, programs, and discounts, as well as design techniques and list components. We offer targeted lists based on specific information so that we can build you a list of ideal prospective customers, as well as saturation lists, which cover a broad geographical area.

  2. Send out a direct mail campaign that will be sure to get you noticed.

    We love producing postcards but consider other options that are more engaging. The more personalized and impactful your campaign, the better the response. With variable data printing, you can insert individuals’ names and change the visuals on your printed pieces, based on demographics.

    You could create a unique campaign that includes a leave-behind, like a full-color jumbo postcard with a magnet attached. Maybe your business wants to increase its local clientele, or perhaps you’re announcing a new store opening. We’ll print your name, logo, location and store hours right on the magnet.

    Dimensional mailings, like the one cited above, garner a 4.0% response rate on average, according to the 2015 DMA report. We’ve had phenomenal success with our own custom-made mailer, created to showcase our capabilities. We produced and sent baseball hats for every person on our list. Our logo was embroidered on the front, and a tag that said, “Made especially for (name inserted here)” was sewn inside. A personalized letter from Cooley was tucked into each box, which was also made for this campaign. Open rates were off the charts.

  3. Tracking and qualifying your ROI is essential.

    Many businesses don’t realize that you can track print campaigns. In fact, Cooley utilizes a host of tracking techniques to determine a campaign’s ROI. We start by having a discussion with a client to ascertain the most efficient and cost-effective method that will deliver maximum results.

    We might recommend PURLs (Personalized URLs), those long-ish URLs that end with a person’s name. Use PURLs to send mail recipients to their private web page, where they see additional content – and where you collect more data from every visitor. QR (for Quick Response) codes also track responses. Using a free QR app, people scan a QR code printed on your mailing piece to access additional content. Other tracking options are those offered through USPS as well as UPS and FedEx.

So the next time you consider a direct mail campaign, imagine sending out something unique and unforgettable. Direct mail comes in all shapes and sizes. Want to get creative? We’d love to be your partner!