To many marketers, the use of print is outdated and irrelevant. But in an era dominated by digital media, the value of marketing online has actually decreased due to oversaturation. Since consumers are increasingly prone to using the Internet on a daily basis, companies have begun to focus their advertising campaigns almost exclusively on using an electronic format.
It doesn't take an economics expert to realize the result of this shift: If everyone uses a single media platform to promote their products and services, the consumer is less likely to remember individual details about each company. This is where more traditional strategies can rise from the ashes and reclaim their former relevance.
For example, marketing departments have largely ignored print in their recent efforts. This means that there is a new opportunity for businesses to firmly entrench themselves as recognizable leaders in their industries by using abandoned methods of appealing to consumers. As more companies ditch direct mail initiatives, more room opens up for clever marketers to take the reigns. Below are some tips to best position your organization to be a standout among its competitors by using direct mail marketing.
1. Get creative – engage your audience and keep them coming back for more
It's not enough to just send out a piece of paper with some facts on it – The Strategic Sourceror advised that any potential ROI you are hoping to achieve from your direct mail campaign will be lost if your content is bland and unappealing. In order to attract the audience, it is imperative you produce a creative, compelling piece that is aesthetically pleasing. The source noted that attention to seemingly miniscule details, such as font choice and size, texture of the paper, colorfulness and other oft-overlooked aspects, is crucial in developing a sustainable strategy for two reasons.
First, your content needs to be attention-grabbing and informative in order to get the potential customer to seek further details. You can incorporate links to social media accounts and your website, as well as a QR code that will lead mobile device users directly to additional content.
Second, The Strategic Sourceror noted that the cost of creating your marketing pieces should certainly be a factor. The source asserted that finding a healthy medium between cost-effective and high-quality materials is crucial. If you are spending too much on top-of-the-line paper for a direct mailing, then you will compromise your company's potential ROI, even if the initiative does generate sizable revenue.
2. Know your target and form strategies tailored to their interests
InsuranceNewsNet.com said that the best way for startups and small businesses to begin marketing to consumers is by using print. On the surface, this seems like a bold claim, given that people practically live on the Internet these days. However, the source argued that print is the sole form of media that all demographics can relate to. Digital natives like millennials still value it, while older generations might not be as tech-savvy, and will largely gravitate toward the resource that has served as humanity's primary method of mass communication since the dawn of time.
Since print marketing has been left behind by many, it is cheaper to purchase than it used to be. For newer companies, it can be an accessible, cost-effective way to appeal to potential clients and to establish their own target demographics. The source said that this can lay a foundation upon which the organization's future marketing efforts will built and expanded, including a multimedia approach that uses a variety of media to complement each other in a way that establishes the brand across various platforms.
3. Use digital sources to gain insights about consumer interests
On the subject of multimedia approaches, The Independent reported on a recent development in the U.K. – using consumers' online browsing habits to tailor direct mail marketing to individuals, rather than demographics. Royal Mail has started experimenting with a new campaign that aims to maximize print marketing ROI by tracking Internet purchases.
For example, if a consumer buys something online, or indicates interest by adding a product to his or her queue, he or she will be added to a list of potential customers. Marketers will have access to this database, and can sent direct mailings to these prospective buyers, knowing they had previously implied interest in their products or services. This will help to enhance ROI by eliminating the large portion of recipients who are targeted simply by belonging to a certain demographic. Instead of casting a wide net in the hope that a small number of fish will be caught, companies can identify individuals who are likely to buy what they are selling.
The Independent also reported that this development is contingent upon recipients consenting to such mailings by agreeing to receive information from certain retailers. The source noted that, as targeting individual consumers becomes more accurate, junk mail will become less common, as each piece will be geared toward specific interests.