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Direct mail is the preferred contact route for most subjects

Direct mail is king


Direct mail is king when it comes to making contact with consumers. That’s the key finding from the latest Marketing-GAP Tracking survey from the DMA.

Marketing-GAP tracking survey reveals that, despite the rise in digital marketing, direct mail is still consumers’ preferred contact route to receive information from brands, and is in fact increasing in popularity.

With three quarters of households opening the mail packs they receive, and people being four times as happy to receive financial information through the mail than through any other medium, mail, as some cynics have suggested in the past, is certainly not dead.

And in today’s social media world, the study shows that direct mail is as relevant as ever.

Interestingly, whilst email was the next most popular route to receive marketing communications, only 1.5 per cent of respondents said they would like to be contacted by brands through social media.

For the financial sector, the strength of mail is significant – it remains the most trusted and preferred media by a considerable margin.

However, it isn’t just the financial sector that should be paying attention to the results of this survey. Figures also reveal that customers were twice as happy to hear about a variety of other products, services or organisations such as charities, customer magazines, cars and mobile phones via direct mail.

The key to making the most of this consumer interest in posted communications is to understand what it is that recipients are looking for, and what might make them throw away the mail pack without opening it.

Three-quarters of consumers who threw away unopened direct mail said they did so because they were not interested in the company or the product.

This demonstrates, once again, the crucial importance of accurate data and correct targeting.

It doesn’t matter what channel you use or what your message is if the customer is fundamentally disinterested in your company. And getting your communications wrong can switch an individual off your brand for life.

So there is a lot that marketers can takeaway from these results, and use to improve their existing and future campaigns.

What comes through, above all, is the continued need to listen. Listen to what customers want and target them as individuals. Listen to customers about how they want to be contacted using the channel and timing that is most suitable for them.

Get that right and you’ll have a successful marketing campaign.

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