Effective marketing is about relevancy and one-to-one communications within an integrated, data-driven, multichannel environment. How does direct mail fit here? Digital channels are now the norm for communicating with customers across all devices. How does direct mail join the "reach the right customer, with the right message through the right channel, at the right time" omnichannel marketing world? Direct mail is powerful, with proven results. But it has been pretty static by comparison to digital channels.
In survey after survey, the majority of people say that they read or scan direct mail. Responders to direct mail spend more, with an average order size up to a quarter higher. Direct mail using variable data print, in our experience, has a 36 percent higher response rate with a 54 percent lower cost per response. The use of multiple channels can increase response rates by 34 percent. The increased effectiveness and ROI of direct mail been confirmed by the Direct Marketing Association and others.
Digital print adds to direct mail's many advantages and power. Highly targeted, one-to-one communications improve response rates and ROI, increasing opportunities for cross selling/up selling, offering opportunities for predictive modeling, segmentation and micro-targeting. From there trigger-based marketing and event-driven communications and product lifecycle events are made possible from within a digital print content management system. In turn, the content can be leveraged across multiple contact channels.
The content-dynamic and available from within cloud-based technology, as part of a company's digital asset management, as one universal image offering scalable assets- enables brands to map messages, images and offers to each individual. Location-based messaging/personalized couponing, product and price appropriate messaging are made possible. Billing statements (cross promotions), marketing collateral, direct mail, and even packaging and large format (boxes, labels, DVD carriers, signage, and more) can be personalized. Most anything can be full of customized marketing messages, further expanding the potential to cost-effectively reach and influence customers and prospects. The digital platform empowers individual marketers to execute campaigns directly from the web, wherever they are and at any time.
Digital print will vault direct mail into the digital age. It will enable targeted, personalized communication, increasing operating and postal savings at the same time (direct mail cost versus digital challenges has been a challenge). Marketers will be able to mail smarter, using database intelligence, and they will be able to further automate the marketing process. Finally, with digital print, companies will be able to control the brand and centralize content to disseminate across web, email, social, and mobile to consumers where and when they want it.