Personalised direct mail is the cornerstone of our industry and its capabilities are the envy of our rivals. No other media can reach their prospects and customers as directly as targeted direct mail, but you don’t want to go into it blind. When a DMA report says 98% of survey participants believe direct mail personalisation is very important, you should probably take note. We’ve analysed some of the most telling data to give you some tips on how to increase your direct mail ROI through personalisation.
Get the simple stuff right
You’d be unpleasantly surprised by the number of companies who skip this important first step: ensuring their database is up to date. But here’s some evidence to convince you of the importance of data cleansing.
Customers will respond better to a direct mail piece if it contains the following:
• Correct name and address (74%)
• Name in the letter message (43%)
• Letter acknowledges historic dealings with the organisation (31%)
• Images to which the recipient can relate (23%)
• Tailored to gender (23%)
Data cleansing and matching will eradicate any errors in your database and will save you money by reducing wastage. And if 41% of people throw away addressed post if it’s not personally addressed to them, then it’s something you want to master.
Think beyond the mailer
Personalised direct mail has a 6.5% response rate; that which isn’t personalised, only 2%. This can represent an ROI increase of between 300 and 1000%. They’re some convincing stats. But how do you turn your direct mailer into mail with purpose? By getting personal. With more data available than ever, you can re-frame your offer and create a proposition that’s both enticing and engaging. After all, engagement equals sales.
Think about the things that matter to your customers and what they will respond to better. Is your mailer dynamic or does it fall flat? What can you personalise that will help seal the deal?
Variable data and dynamic content give your mailer extra oomph and make your recipient believe you’re speaking directly to them.
Here are some examples of dynamic content that can be fed into your direct mail using variable image printing:
• Pre-fill forms with their data so they only have to write the essentials
• Put a custom map of your nearest location on the mailer
• Target the offer according to the age group e.g. dental cleaning for 18 year-olds, dentures for the 90 year-olds
• Use postcodes and demographics to inform your offer
• Print their name in an offer or in the artwork i.e. make them feel included
• Use a personalised URL to get them engaging online
• Use augmented reality to bring a mailer to life
The DMA’s report, From Letterbox to Inbox: Building Customer Relationships was the document the industry was begging for, and it gave significant insight into consumer behaviour and direct mail engagement. Given direct mail is measurable it has a close relationship with statistical analysis, meaning the findings go hand-in-hand with ROI measurement.
It’s easier as a business to apply changes to the way you personalise your mail and understand its effect. Meaning as a business owner or representative you can develop insight into how it affects your own business model and how to alter your direct mail efforts in the future.
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