Harness the power of digital to execute your direct mail campaigns

Harness the power of digital to execute your direct mail campaigns

How can marketeers harness the power of digital to execute their direct mail campaigns? Read our 5 top tips:

There was a time where individual marketing channels were viewed as separate entities. These days, a business does itself a disservice if they ignore other forms of marketing. Customers’ attention is already fragmented with the various options in which they consume media, so why not cover it all?

Direct mail is geared to be effective with any audience, and while it’s superior to email in volume purchases, it’s inferior on cost per campaign. Historically the two types of media competed, but with greater advances in printing technology, marketeers can harness the power of digital to execute their direct mail campaigns.

 

1. It’s Physical

One of the regular arguments for direct mail is its physical nature. You can’t get replicate it with an email, but you can use a digital to make it something that will resonate better with the recipient. It needs to stop them in their tracks—only handling a mailer doesn’t cut it to achieve significant results. One way to do this is to give something away with it that requires interaction. A coupon directing the recipient to the website with a redemption code enlists their action and converts them in a physical way. They needn’t purchase, but holding something physical establishes a relationship and makes people do the things you ask them because it’s real. And because people hold onto a mailer for 17 days after they’ve received it, you still get their attention when they look at it every day.

 

2. It Conveys Emotion

You can shout as much as you want using traditional advertising methods in an increasingly online world, but that doesn’t mean anyone’s going to hear you. You need to create something that connects directly on an emotional level. We used to wonder how we can get into people’s most intimate sanctum and now with smartphones they’ve practically invited us in. Think how that digital connection can translate to a real-world application. Big data allows us to see how people interact with their devices so with a little insight and creativity, a direct-mail piece can reflect their online behaviour. It can be as simple as a physical version of your customer’s wish list, and when they’re holding your product in the their hand it’s easier for them to envision it in their life and convert to purchase.

 

3. Unparalleled Personalisation

More than just a name and address on an envelope or mailer, direct mail has unprecedented access to get personal. While consumers treat email containing personal information with suspicion, direct mail has a certain authenticity that can’t be replicated. Think about customer behaviour to influence your direct-mail offering and you’re well on your way to large returns on investment. Change your messaging, revise the offer, or trigger specific mailers whenever the customer performs a predetermined action online. With new technology like the Xerox Trivor, you can send out a mailer with little notice and greater speed than ever.

 

4. The best of both world’s

By testing with email we’re better at predicting direct-mail results. Firstly it’s cost-effective and allows you immediate insight into which offers, propositions and demographics work best. Unique URLs even give you a secondary personalisation option and highly detailed and accurate tracking. It’s the best way that email can give your direct mail campaigns a predictable level of sales, so guessing if you’re going to make a profit is finally coming to an end. Email for predictability, direct mail for volume sales.

 

5. Higher Response Rates

Six months’ email (based on 28 emails over 26 weeks) yields the same amount of revenue as one direct mail event in one month, that’s 28:1 sales ratio. With a greater response rate it can free up your marketing budget to do concurrent activity: primary sales from direct mail with testing and complementary follow-up with email. It also frees up your email to highlight other products or services, or introduce flash sales and incentives for more dynamic campaigns. You should be continually reaching to new audiences and markets so why not start testing with email today and sell with direct mail tomorrow?

 

Contact First Move today on 01494 539300 or email enquiries@firstmove.co.uk for help with your Direct Mail campaigns.

 

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Direct Mail in the Marketing Mix

Why Use Direct Mail Within Your Marketing Mix?

You’re planning your next marketing campaign—how will you spend your budget? Planners get paid good money to define which kinds of activity your campaign needs. Do you choose to work below the line or above the line, or a combination of the two? Are you just digital or do you have spend allocated to more traditional outlets like television and newspapers? And where does direct mail fit into all of this? When you learn that 79%* of direct mail recipients respond immediately to a mailer you soon realise that it would be foolish to overlook.

Not only does direct mail work as a standalone, it integrates perfectly with any marketing mix. The older cousin of all the other forms of media, it’s more tested and proven effective than its counterparts. Direct mail is a lot easier to quantify, both in terms of expected outcome and later, return on investment. Its measurability is a welcome insight to marketeers. And it helps to prove your case to your superiors when you’re armed with better information. Just think how it’s easier to have a campaign approved a lot more swiftly if you can show its worth.

Direct mail is the human element your campaign is missing. Not only does your message go directly to their home or business, it ends up literally in their hands. It can’t be ignored—the recipient must do something physically with it, and more than a quarter will keep it for future reference. When they can touch your product or service at the first point of contact, you’ve already made a connection. How you interpret that is yours to decide and is only limited by your imagination. It could be a free sample, an opportunity to experience your product or service at a demonstration, or perhaps you can lure them with a solution to problem they might have.

With a direct-mail presence in your marketing mix it means a more integrated campaign and consistent messaging across all channels. Being ubiquitous is the way through to your customers when competing for their attention in a crowded marketplace. You give your customer multiple opportunities to contact you by providing handy reminders along the way. When you are speaking to them directly to their specific needs with direct mail you’re one step away from a handshake.

 

For more information on how Direct Mail can work within your marketing mix please contact us enquiries@firstmove.co.uk or call 01494 539300.


References:

* DMA (2013: Why direct mail still matters, The consumers’ case: infographic report)

The full From letterbox to inbox: building customer relationships 2013 report can be downloaded from http://dma.org.uk/toolkit/letterbox-inbox-building-customer-relationships-2013

 

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Direct Mail Patterns of Behaviour

What Are the Patterns of Behaviour When It Comes to Direct Mail?

Patterns occur naturally and help us to recognise a structure and that perhaps life isn’t entirely arbitrary. The same applies to marketing, including direct mail and its statistical analysis by searching for repetitive behaviour, usually in the form of sales, conversions or other metrics.

This data is vital to assessing the profile of your customer or prospect. It helps you to assess their propensity to spend and to devise a direct marketing strategy to target them with insight into their behaviour before you make your first contact.

If you have an established business with a proven sales history then you are at a serious advantage to your more junior competitors. Having a record of what has enticed customers before (and how they behaved once they received your direct mail) allows you to contact them armed with the information you need. When you apply this principle to direct mail it makes your job of selling much easier, whether product, service or charity.

There are three key behaviour patterns to identify when it comes to Direct Mail:

Frequency

While it might seem obvious, frequency refers to how often your client purchases. For subscription-based services this could be monthly, quarterly or annually; for specific products, this could be once a year or every few years. Understanding your frequency helps you anticipate demand for your product or service and can assist in planning things like inventory and peak replenishment periods.

 

Value

Value helps you identify the amount your customer spends each time, and can help you estimate how much they’re worth to you in the long run when paired with frequency. Not all customers were created equally and some are more valuable to you than others—these are the ones worth nurturing.

 

Lifespan

How long will your customer stay with you? This is where lifespan comes into play, helping you to understand whether they’re a once-off customer or if they could remain loyal for the long haul. Clients with a long lifespan are good targets for supplementary products or services that add value to what they already have.
When analysing your sales data, take the three above factors into consideration. Pick your star product or service (this will likely be your highest seller) and apply these three metrics to the sample. Use this information to understand your data better and make more informed decisions when sending out your next direct-mail campaign.

For example, those lower-value clients have the potential to become higher-value clients if you understand more about their lifespan. This will show you opportunities where you can contact them more frequently and thus, build your sales. Just follow the patterns.

For more information on how Direct Mail can work for your business please contact us enquiries@firstmove.co.uk or call 01494 539300.

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Direct Mail vs Email

Key Statistics: Direct Mail vs Email

Direct Mail vs Email – We take a look at the key statistics on customer engagement and ROI across both Marketing channels.

There’s no question email was one of the most important inventions of the 21st Century, but many would agree it’s one of the worst. Sitting in front of your computer bombarded with messages for hours—a never-ending stream. At least before it existed someone would have to write a letter first and then put it in the post! These days these views aren’t isolated and many of your customers think the same way. In fact people admit to responding to only 0.12% of email messages. Now that’s a scary statistic for any marketeer.

It’s easy to write off direct mail when you’re bombarded by emails distracting your attention in different ways without your realising. But a piece of direct mail is different: It gets the reader’s attention because they’re holding it. And you can’t ignore something that’s already in your hand. 56% of people find printed marketing the most trustworthy of all the channels; that’s powerful insight right there.

In comparison to email direct mail has a greater likelihood to convert. How much? 4.6% of all mail sent converts to a response, which eclipses the paltry 0.12% of email. To imagine it in plain terms, for a mail campaign sent to 100K recipients, 4,600 of them will make a purchase. Email doesn’t even scrape in with 120 respondents. They both took the same amount of time to plan, draft and execute; which has the greatest return on your time and labour force?

But it doesn’t stop there. Direct mail generates 10% more customers than email (34% direct mail compared to 24% email) and 17.7 million people ordered within 12 months of receiving a direct-mail catalogue. Why? Direct mail conveys sentiment and emotion—it makes people react. This isn’t to say that email is entirely bad. Email serves its purpose and works quite well with direct mail for totally integrated campaigns, and it can even be a means of securing the sale with your customers, but it shouldn’t be the sole method to contact them.

As marketeers our job is to create an emotional response in our target audience. Choose the way to cause a real reaction. Email might make for a great support act, but the real star is direct mail.

 

To talk about your direct mail campaigns please contact us enquiries@firstmove.co.uk or call 01494 539300.

 

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Xerox Partner

The Trivor™ Frontier: Engaging Customers with Direct-Mail Technology

We’re pleased to announce First Move Direct Marketing has become a trusted partner of Xerox Worldwide.

More than just a supplier of high-quality printing and direct-mail solutions, we have been acknowledged by the world leader in digital printing. We kicked off the partnership by being the first in the UK to have their new Trivor™ 2400 Inkjet Press, an unparalleled machine that provides super fast and personalised mailing in the blink of an eye.

For our customers this means a quicker turnaround for mail campaigns and a way to create as-they-happen mail responses to digital campaigns.

We’ll say it: Anyone who says direct mail is old-fashioned doesn’t know what they talking about. In fact, direct mail has never been a more effective way of customer engagement. It’s an exciting time for marketeers as the technology has finally caught up to our imaginations. Now direct mail campaigns no longer require months of planning to even consider executing one—they can be turned around in days with the new Xerox Trivor™ 2400 Inkjet Press.

The latest and greatest addition to the commercial inkjet family, it’s a machine with direct-mail power. With power comes responsibility, so the first in the UK is entrusted to First Move Direct Marketing as part our partnership with Xerox Worldwide. But what does this does this mean to you as a direct-mail specialist? Faster personalisation and targeting.

One of the arguments against print is the speed in which it takes to launch a campaign, but with the Xerox Trivor™ you can print, personalise and send an entire campaign in 24 hours. Able to print 36,000 images/hour at 1,200 DPI (lithographic quality); that means a 100,000-copy mail shot can be produced in around 5.5 hours. Sort it, send it and your customers can have your mailer in their hands the following day.

It’s an exciting prospect for those who are looking for new ways to target customers and prospects. Recent trends have shown the integration of campaigns across multiple channels, print being one of them. Using big data now available from consumer interactions and sales histories, direct mail can now target the individual with offers that address their needs—individually. Combined with data processing, the Trivor™ can handle these personalised requests in an extremely fast and efficient manner.

Now you can record your customer’s interaction with your website or a specific landing page, and send them something redeemable in response. Imagine their surprise when they open the post to see further information about your product or service they were investigating. Convenient, tangible and top of mind, how could they not convert?

More than 50 trillion pages are printed worldwide today using production print technology—only 2% of which is printed digitally. First Move is proud to be a digital supplier, which means greater quality and faster processing than you could receive using traditional methods.

Get in touch with us for a demonstration or to discuss how we can bring to life your next campaign. It’s direct mail for the 21st Century.

 

Please contact us enquiries@firstmove.co.uk or call 01494 539300 for more information.

 

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5 Reasons why Direct Mail is great

5 Reasons to Take Another Look at Direct Mail

Like all good relationships, when you are so close to something sometimes it’s easy to forget just how good it is. And the same principle applies to direct mail.

It’s one of the major forms of marketing that has stood the test of time, and these days as our technology improves, it’s even better than before. No longer just a stamp and mailer, direct mail is a sophisticated form of marketing and should be considered a major player.

Here are five reasons why direct mail is so great.

ONE: It’s physical

This one is a no-brainer, but the tangible nature of direct mail is its greatest feature. While e-mail gets to people at a low cost, there’s a chance it’ll never reach their inbox let alone receive their attention. With direct mail they’re guaranteed to receive your mailer direct to their hands. It doesn’t get much more physical than that.

TWO: It’s measurable

Direct mail is superior to other forms of marketing as you can quantify almost everything about it. Reviewing results and calculating your ROI is easy, and helps you make key decisions for your next campaign. It also makes forecasting easier and getting your marketing budget approved a cinch.

THREE: It’s testable

Not only can you measure you results, but you can measure your approach. Have one offer, but two different ways of saying it? Well, it’s easy to find out which works best. Split testing is the way to make sure you’re doing direct mail right before you commit to a full campaign. Split in half, split a portion; you’ll know soon enough which way is the best way.

FOUR: It’s responsive

How can that be? These days with technology in its current state, you can plan and execute a campaign quickly, but according to interaction with your customers and prospects. Printing is far more sophisticated than ever and it’s fast. If your customer replies to an offer now, you can have their coupon with them within two business days. There are endless possibilities to responsive marketing.

FIVE: It’s effective

3.4% of direct mail recipients respond, which equates to real sales. Greater revenue, greater marketing spend and even more opportunities.
For more information about our direct mail services please contact us on 01494 539300 or email enquiries@firstmove.co.uk

Direct Mail

How to make the most of your email campaigns with direct mail

One of the things we direct mail marketeers hear time and again is a resistance to such a “traditional” form of advertising. While it’s easy to tire of the same old hesitation, it’s important to note that it’s our job to educate our prospects and respond to any objections they might have. But perhaps it’s our approach that needs improvement?

Usually direct mail is offered as an alternative to other marketing practices, but what if it’s to be included as part of their marketing mix? You might think it’s an unorthodox strategy, but hear me out. While all marketing is competing for the same share of spend, we all have the same objective: to convert sales and leads. What if I were to tell you that electronic mail—our direct rival—can actually benefit direct mail?

One of the familiar arguments is that direct mail costs so much. Sure, but in comparison to low-cost e-mail mailers, anything would seem extortionate. But this is just on the surface. While we might know it, our customers don’t realise just how low the response rate of e-mail actually is in comparison to direct mail. When you explain these details they begin to come around to the idea, and when it’s extrapolated to realistic figures—real-life sample sizes in the thousands versus in the hundreds—they understand instantly how it affects their bottom line. And that’s the major concern of our clients—how will it impact their sales and ROI? This is our opportunity to demonstrate that direct mail can help them “round out” or close the sale as part of an overall marketing campaign.

Say, for example, you have a television or radio advertisement running. It’ll have great reach and many will see or hear it, however, how many consumers will remember your product when the time comes to purchase? But if you send out a mailer during your advertising campaign they’ll have instant brand recognition and your product will be in their hands. Literally. You can apply the same principle to an e-mail campaign. It’s not as crazy as you think. With email, you can track each recipient that has actually opened your e-mail (provided their privacy settings allow it). Even if they don’t do anything about the e-mail, you know that if you target them again using direct mail they’ll recognise your brand immediately.

Of course there are many ways and interpretations of this particular strategy and a direct-mail specialist can build a specific campaign to suit the correct client, product and budget. We no longer need to fight the fight for direct mail. Direct mail is here to stay, we just need to show them how it’s integral.

 

For help with your direct mail mail campaigns please contact us enquiries@firstmove.co.uk or call 01494 539300.

 

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Xerox Trivor 2400 Inkjet Press

First Move direct marketing orders 1st Xerox Trivor™ in the UK

First Move direct marketing has invested in the new Xerox Trivor™ 2400 Inkjet Press. A first in the United Kingdom, First Move’s new Xerox Trivor™ not only represents technological advancement, it means greater customer engagement for direct-mail professionals.

Now you can personalise high quality printed mailings at the same speed you receive digital insights from your customers, responding to trends, behaviours and sales patterns FAST.

The Xerox Trivor™ offers unparalleled print personalisation, meaning that First Move can keep up with the current rate of digital and the tailored approach consumers demand. No longer reserved for digital marketeers, personalised mail shots can take on an entirely customised approach that modifies artwork, offers, and practically everything according to the intended recipient.

“For direct mail to be successful today it must be personalised and not just the address” said David Amor, Managing Director, First Move direct marketing. “The Xerox Trivor™ 2400 Inkjet Press will ensure that First Move continues to innovate within direct-mail marketing by turning our digital insights into fast, personalised direct mail.”

Using big data now available from consumer interactions and sales histories, direct mail can now target the individual with offers that address their needs—individually. Combined with data processing, the Xerox Trivor™ can handle these personalised requests in an extremely fast and efficient manner.

Fast also means targeted mailings in response to consumer or environmental behaviour. The inkjet of inkjet presses, it’s a high-quality and fast addition to First Move’s professional machines. Able to print 36,000 images/hour at 1,200 DPI (lithographic quality); that means a 100,000 mail shot can be produced in around 5.5 hours. Marketeers don’t have to plan months in advance—they can rely on their customer or prospects’ behaviour before triggering a brand new campaign at a moment’s notice.

“The Xerox Trivor™ is designed to grow with the business, so it can meet the needs of First Move Direct Marketing now and in the future,” said Phil Tucker, managing director, Advanced Business Equipment. “As the first UK customer, we are confident that it will be able to deliver the personalised results demanded by its customers.”

The Trivor™ will be installed in September 2016.

For further information please contact us on 01494 539300 or email enquiries@firstmove.co.uk
More information on the Xerox Trivor™ Printer can be found on the Xerox website.
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How to Write a Responsive Direct Mail Letter

Direct mail takes many formats, from catalogues and brochures to flyers and special offers. Though, there’s one direct mail format that’s founded in the very traditions of postal mail: the humble letter. A direct mail letter is more powerful than you think. It’s a personalised invitation to your recipient, asking them to participate in a one-on-one dialogue. It’s your opportunity to define what this comprises, so allow us to give you some guidance when drafting your next direct mail letter.

 

Be personal

Everyone likes to feel special, and we all like to know we’re being addressed individually. ‘Dear Sir’ and ‘Dear Madam’ are considered old-fashioned, and ‘Dear Home Owner’ or similar is just plain lazy. Use the personalisation capability of direct mail to your advantage: address each letter individually using the recipient’s name from your database. Given names allow for friendliness and familiarity, unless formality’s required, in which case use ‘Dear Mr/Mrs/Ms X.’ Not only will this get their attention, you will pique their curiosity knowing that the letter concerns them directly.

 

Make it relevant

Just exactly what the letter comprises is entirely up to you, but it must relate to your reader. Let them know the context of the letter in the first paragraph and you will engage them for the remainder. By communicating the letter’s subject matter or offer they can understand whether it’s of relevance and can continue to read on. You can also supplement it with a subject line, although these are best reserved for business.

 

Gain their trust

Great copy equates to reader engagement, which means conversions for your business. Define the tone of voice as informative and caring, and half your work is done. You need to instil a sense of trust in your recipient before they listen to what you have to say. Next identify a problem for which your organisation has a solution; it can be extended health insurance for the family, or an upgrade to a product or service for which they have the basic edition. Whatever you’re offering it needs to sound appealing to their needs. And remember to sell the benefits of your ‘offering’ not its features.

 

Close with the offer

It isn’t considered repetitive if it’s informative. Remind the reader why you’re contacting them again— clearly state the terms of the offer, the duration of its availability, and remind them how they can benefit.

 

Show them how to contact you

Ensure you’re available to assist them with any questions that they might have—this can make or break a conversion. Make it clear and simple for the reader to understand how to get in touch. It’s perfectly acceptable to include a reply phone number, websites or email address in the body of the letter, but you should also put it elsewhere on the page so it’s easy to find.

 

Contact First Move today on 01494 539300 or email enquiries@firstmove.co.uk for help with your Direct Mail letters.

 

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How to Brief Your Mailing House

So you have your creative and your database is about ready to go, now it’s time to deploy. Briefing your mailing house can be tricky, but it’s the part on which we direct mail specialists thrive. With so many options it can seem daunting to a first-timer, though with some expert guidance it’s a cinch. Here we will show you just how to brief your mailing house, which might even inspire you with other ways to save time in your next campaign.

 

Data Management

Lists and spreadsheets mightn’t be your thing, but we love them. It’s our job to take your data, make sense of it, and manipulate it into a successful campaign. You might have your own vision, but we can help you shape it to achieve the best possible outcome when sending to customers and prospects. When speaking to your mailing house, instruct them of the specifics of data management. Do you need to clean data by removing duplicates, merging records or purging those that are outdated? Have you considered adding special postal information, such as barcodes, to each data record? Or does it need to be further segmented for A/B testing? The more information you provide the better.

 

Printing and Personalisation

Printing is hugely important in direct mail, and so is the method you choose. Offset printing is great for high-quality prints without personalization and you can then over print variable data in black. Digital colour print allows for unlimited personalisation. Inkjet allows you to add addresses and individuals’ other information to your mailer in a limited format to litho pre-print. Remember to tell your mailing house which delimiters you have used to identify areas that require personalisation, such as salutation blocks and customised offers. Once the mailer is set up, ask to run a small electronic trial of your first few records to ensure that everything corresponds.

 

Insertions

Special insertions into your mailer can increase your response rate immensely. By enclosing an entry form or a self-addressed envelope, you make it easier for your customer or prospect to get in touch. When it comes to informing your mailing house of your requirements, it’s important to think about how you would like to present it. You can specify where you would like it to be inserted through camera matching, and the precise number of inserts for your mailing.

 

Plastic Wrap

Wrapping mailers in plastic is an industry standard, but did you know that you can customise the overall look? Ask your mailing house to show you examples of how special printing can transform the outer of your next mailer.

 

Warehousing and Fulfilment

Need a little help picking and packing? This is something that many mailing houses can help you achieve. Simply brief them to the nature of your product, supply the inventory, and allow them to fulfil the orders as they flood in. Easy!

 

Postage

And finally, and probably the most important: How does it reach your recipients? Make sure you specify just how you would like your mail campaign to be sent 1st, 2nd or Economy – does it qualify as Advertising or Business mail? Is it by registered or international post? Do you qualify for postal discounts and if you are a registered charity check if you qualify for zero rate vat on production and use DSA to minimise your VAT charge. Your mailing house can advise on the conditions of which you mightn’t be aware, and can save you time and money in the long run.

 

Please contact us enquiries@firstmove.co.uk or call 01494 539300 for more information.

 

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5 Reasons to take another look at Direct Mail

The Past, Present and Future of Direct Mail