Inspiring Direct Mail

5 Inspiring Direct Mail Pieces to Make You Think “Wow”

Looking for a little direct-mail inspiration? Got a client with a brief that needs to stand out amongst the competition? Or just looking to see how things are done in direct mail elsewhere in the world? We’ve got it covered. Engaging direct mail means creativity, but it doesn’t have to break the bank. Even small runs of incredibly personalised mail get results, and if done right, gains traction through social media. Here are some of the whacky, out-there ideas to ignite your creative spark.

 

Open Your Mind to the Power of Direct Mail

Getting others to use direct mail can be a challenge, but leading by example pays dividends. An Post worked with a leading mindreader for the mailer. Affixed was a five-cent piece and scratch panel that revealed the recipients’ names. Ingenious personalisation that got their attention and presented a pretty convincing case for direct mail.

Open Your Mind to the Power of Direct Mail

Monarch Airlines 

Got a curious audience who needs to know about travel destination before they book? Monarch Airlines created a foldout direct-mail piece with a twist: it integrated fully with AR. Users could use their device to navigate the mountain by spinning it around for a 360º view and zoom in on key slopes. Accompanied by narration by an Olympian, it presented a solid case for strapping on a pair of skis.

Open Your Mind to the Power of Direct Mail

 

World Water Day

For Belgium’s conservation awareness programme, World Water Day, they created a mailer with a simple message: water is essential to human survival. In this case, they integrated the message with the method of delivery and the message could only be read by running it under water. It’s not easily forgotten and the campaign message is reinforced for the recipient. Just add water.

World Water Day


Planet Kids 

Receiving mail is exciting for anyone who’s not old enough to pay bills, and it’s particularly enticing when it can be made into a toy. Childcare company, Planet Kids sent out an invasion to their annual family day and with some folding, it could be turned into one of five hand puppets. Clever, simple, and guaranteed to get smiles.

Planet Kids

Voyanga

The new tour operator, Voyanga wanted to stand out in a crowded travel marketplace and the way they did it was with direct mail. Using real shells they inserted a tiny speaker into it to deliver sounds of the ocean crashing, seagulls, laughter and an invitation to explore tropical locations. Sure beats the lousy old shells you find on the beach!

Voyanger

 

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

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Xerox Trivor Inkjet Printer

Introducing the Fastest Colour Variable Inkjet Printer for more personal, better use of data & improved ROI – A World’s First.

The wait is over: the Xerox® Trivor™ 2400 inkjet printer is here … and it’s going to change the way you do direct mail printing. A UK-first, First Move has partnered with Xerox Worldwide to give you even more options as a print marketing provider. This is a moment in printing history you’ll remember; when affixed addresses to mailers became a thing of the past and personalised, targeted, and customised full-colour artwork became the standard. Digital printing fulfilment will never be the same.

A 20” continuous feed press with myriad customisable options you can turn plain paper into remarkable imagery. It combines proven imaging technologies with new innovations to deliver the next level in high performance, and it requires less space than its predecessors. And with a new digital front end it’s easier to use and meets SLAs without a hitch. It’s the perfect solution to those campaigns that need to reach far and wide with targeted results.

Direct mail flexibility is key and the Xerox® Trivor™ understands this. And it’s fast, too. Choose your resolution from 300 x 600 dpi up to 1200 x 600 dpi and it can deliver 2,400 full-colour impressions and over 2,850 monochrome impressions per minute, with speeds up to 200 meters per minute. The Xerox® Trivor™ uses high-density inks, which mean bold, true colours on plain stock and consistent image quality. Quick to dry, wait times are reduced so you can get your direct mail campaigns out faster.

Adjustable print speed even allows you to slow the press down to one metre per minute at any time during a production run to eliminate unexpected results. It’s power you can trust.

And all that speed and technical prowess equals one thing: productivity. As a business you can benefit from the faster turnarounds and a higher volume print runs with full customisation. If your direct mail is transactional, full white paper workflows mean you can provide your customers with offers tailored to them and statements that alter according to your set criteria, such as spend and other benchmarks. Direct marketeers also can offer more relevant offers in a single print run to each of their clients, ensuring less wastage and more effective use of postal services, as well as better engagement rates with personalised direct mail.

Xerox® Trivor™ 2400, printing powerhouse:

  • 4-35 million A4 impressions per month (in CMYK, 600 x 600 dpi resolution)
  • Up to 57 million colour or 68 million mono A4 impressions per month

 

Contact First Move on 01494 539300 to see the Xerox® Trivor™ 2400 in action. Ask for your own demonstration. It’s even more impressive in person.

 

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Direct Mail by Numbers: Key statistics on the world’s favourite Marketing

Direct Mail in the 21st Century – Infographic

Direct Mail ROI through personalisation

How to increase your direct mail ROI through personalisation

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.

 

Please contact us enquiries@firstmove.co.uk or call John Lloyd on 01494 539300 for more information on how you can increase your ROI through personalisation.

You might also be interested in the following articles:

5 ways to personalise your Direct Mail campaign

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Personalised Direct Mail

5 Ways to Personalise Your Direct Mail Campaign

If you’re a direct mail expert, you’ll know its personalisation capabilities and how to manipulate them. Direct mail has come far since “Dear FNAME” and the traditional mail merge; now it’s a marketing powerhouse with scope to do some really cool things. The key to personalisation is making your recipient feel included and that you’re speaking directly to them. No matter the size of your database each of them should feel like they’re the only one in the room. Here’s a few ways to get through to them.

  1. pURLs

The personalised URL (pURL) is incredibly under-utilised, but one of the easiest ways to get through to your customer base. Integrating the physical with the digital, your mailer should included a shortened URL, QR or redemption code to direct your target to your online presence. Here you can greet them with a fully customised experience—the level of detail’s entirely up to you. Use their first name, skin the page with their  football team’s colours, remind them what their latest purchase was, or suggest their next product acquisition. It’s your portal to engagement and a direct link to sales conversion.

  1. Data sets

Know a little or a lot about your customer? Use data sets to inform your proposition. This information can come from your sales data or from other sources, such as social media or website interaction. Take this information, shape the way you speak to them and give them something targeted and relevant. The more your campaign appeals to their specific interests, the more likely they’ll respond.

  1. Discrete offers

One client might like cola, the other lemonade, but what about the ginger-beer drinker? While they might be fans of your brand, they might prefer certain products over others. Anticipate taste differences and give them what they want. By catering to your targets’ preferences and using the data you have available you can make assumptions about their purchase behaviour and offer them relevant sales opportunities.

  1. AR experiences 

Want to show your product in a completely new light? Embrace augmented reality (AR) and watch your print mailer come to life. By using their mobile device in conjunction with a dedicated app and your mailer, you can show them a side to print they’ve never seen. Animations, 360º walk-arounds, video demonstrations or selfie filters; engage your target audience with the latest technology.

  1. Social sharing

Keen on additional ROI and increased exposure for your campaign? Get your consumer to personalise your campaign for you. Give your audience something physical that they can use in the real-world. A cardboard cutout of your product, a sign with the social hashtag, or anything else that can be photographed and shared with social media. Make it easy and fun for them to interact with your brand and watch those shares and sales explode.

 

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

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How to write a responsive Direct Mail letter

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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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FM-Blog-18-1130x195

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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What to Include in a Direct Mail Pack

How to create and deliver a powerful, cleverly executed direct mail pack that makes them want to tear, unfold, read, and respond.

For many years, “junk mail’”had a poor reputation with customers, businesses and marketers alike; and this was no wonder, given the ugly, loud, one-size-fits-all approach of a lot of direct mail in the past. But the most powerful, cleverly executed direct mail campaigns have radically changed those perceptions in recent years by offering quality campaigns to prospects who actually want to engage with them.

Here are some ways your campaign can put an envelope in your prospects’ hands that makes them want to tear, unfold, read, and respond.

 

Add a personal touch

Perhaps one of the most important realisations of marketers has been that personal touches are important. Personally addressing each recipient is often the difference between an open envelope and the wastepaper basket. A handwritten greeting is a sign of openness and warmth, while some information that recognises a customer’s past engagement can show an enticing level of familiarity.

 

Tailor the content

Tailoring the contents of a mailing to a prospect’s age, gender or location is also a very effective tool in terms of generating customer engagement. Strong imagery is another must in any effective direct mail pack. Use imagery that provokes an emotional response in your target audience, with people they can relate to smiling, feeling relieved, or having a great experience – whatever emotional response is most appropriate for your campaign.

 

Have a strong call to action

Your call to action is perhaps the most critical element of your campaign, triggering a response from the recipient towards a marketing outcome. In fact, in a recent survey conducted by the Royal Mail, nearly half of marketers (44.8%) ranked the call to action as the most important element of their integrated marketing campaigns. A good call to action should drive your prospect to a specific website, phone service, postal or email address to find further information, make a purchase, or take out a subscription.

 

Make it easy for them to respond

Of course, it’s not as simple as drawing your prospect in with the call to action and then chalking up a win. The outcome needs to also be easy and satisfying enough to keep your prospect engaged. If inviting your prospect to reply by mail, postage should be reply paid. In many cases, the enclosure of a reply/subscription form is also essential. Phone numbers, email and website addresses all need to stand out from the mail and be clear and legible. Phone services need to be up and running efficiently. Your URL should not only work, but should work effortlessly, as well as integrating stylistically with the mailing.

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 Tips

Direct Mail Tips According to Experts

Planning a direct mail campaign and baffled by the terminology? Inspired, but looking for additional insight? Or maybe you think you’re onto a winner, but wouldn’t mind a little extra guidance? Well, look no further. We’ve got some expert direct mail tips from the DMA, Royal Mail, and First Move, which should set you on the path to direct marketing success.

Direct Marketing Association (DMA)
You might think that the poor reputation of ‘junk mail’ is one of the main barriers to businesses investing in direct marketing. However, in the Mail Matters 2015 report, the DMA found that cost (cited by 43% of respondents) was the main perceived barrier, not reputation (cited by a mere 16%).

This explains why 15% of digital marketeers have already adopted direct marketing in conjunction with their digital campaigns, as they seek new ways to cut through the digital “white noise.” But there is still more potential to be realised: Only 46% of those using direct mail have genuinely combined advertising mail and digital marketing by offering exclusive content—like personalised URLs, scannable elements and QR codes—to mail respondents.

When you consider that 98% of respondents would welcome better content personalisation, which has been one of the strengths of direct marketing for over a decade, you can begin to imagine the untapped potential of this medium.

Royal Mail
Many businesses don’t realise that Royal Mail also offers a range of services and tools to assist with direct marketing campaigns, from format choices to delivery options and machine readability to research tools. Some things to remember:
A direct marketing expert can also help you decide, for example, whether it’s most economical to pre-sort the mail or to have this step done by the Royal Mail on the way to delivery.

Barcodes and mailmark barcodes (which have extra space customers to place their own information) may also be suitable for your mailing.
Moreover, prices reduce as volume goes up, meaning that you might be looking at less than 20p per letter for a medium-large campaign.

First Move
Facts and figures aside, the crucial advantage of direct marketing lies in its physicality—its power to stir emotions and create a tactile connection with the brand and the offer.

A recent study by researchers at Bangor University showed that physical messages trigger a much deeper emotional response than virtual messages. Participants’ neurological activity was monitored while they received both physical and virtual messages. Resoundingly, the physical messages caused more activity in those centres of the brain that correspond with emotional response. In real-world terms, this translates into not only a higher chance the message will become ingrained in a prospect’s memory, but also a deeper brand connection. And that means, above all, a higher response rate.

In fact, research shows that whereas an average email marketing campaign will yield a response rate of just over 1 in 1000, businesses can expect a response rate of around 1 in 25 for an expertly planned and executed direct marketing campaign.

 

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 Key Statistics

Direct Mail by Numbers: Key Statistics About the World’s Favourite Marketing

When building a campaign, you should always play to its strengths. Direct mail comes pretested with decades of industry use and insights that you can apply to any campaign, giving you an overview well before going to print. And best of all, it’s entirely measurable.

The beauty of quantitative data lies in its infinite detail. Not only can you anticipate your campaign’s results, but it can help you to figure out the smaller details, such as budgeting, forecasting, and preparation for an influx of sales or subscription leads.

Measurement is important and it’s what makes direct mail so great. We’ve compiled some of the most important key statistics that make a case for direct mail, so why don’t we let the numbers do the talking?

94 billion spam emails are sent across the globe every day—most never read.

92% of recipients will be driven to act online, according to  Royal Mail study.

87% are encouraged to make online purchases.

86% feel a greater connection with your business.

79% of consumers act on direct mail immediately—only 45% react to email in the same way.

70% welcome mail that rewards their loyalty.

67% of a 2011 study suggests women aged 45-64 are most likely to donate to charity.

61% of advertising budgets are spent on direct mail by UK charities.

54% engage in social media.

43% download something.

39% of people have an area in their home dedicated to displaying their mail.

38% believe a physical mailer can influence how they feel about the sender.

£2.98 is made for a charity for every £1 spent in a 2013 study.

1.1 – 1.4% will respond to a direct mail piece.

.04% will respond to an internet advertisement, according to a Harvard Business Review study.

.03% will respond to an email.

 

Listed in black and white, it’s obvious why direct mail has stood the test of time. Be inspired by these magic numbers, and make sure your next campaign stacks up.

 

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

 

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