A 21st Century Approach to Marketing with Print

You can’t deny the fact consumers’ behaviors have changed. We’re in the Internet age, and marketers’ strategies need to reflect today’s environment. But don’t be fooled into thinking direct mail is going extinct like some rare bird. In fact, the Direct Marketing Association has found direct mail boasts a 3.4 percent open rate, which compares to e-mail’s average response rate of 0.12 percent quite favorably. If you dive a little deeper into the numbers, the DMA reports direct mail has a response rate of 10 to 30 times more than e-mail. This data indicates consumers aren’t all that thrilled with the bombardment of today’s digital advertising.

“Because of the proliferation of e-mails and the onslaught of display ads everywhere, there is an advantage of going through direct mail,” said Yory Wurmser, the director of marketing and media insights at the DMA. “Direct mail in a way has become less cluttered.”

We are far from the death sentence for direct marketing so many bloggers and social media tweeters have proclaimed. The question businesses need to ask themselves is “how can we incorporate traditional techniques like direct mail with new marketing strategies?”

It takes both to achieve the best results. Businesses can’t afford to ignore the conversation happening every minute through social media. But they also can’t ignore the benefits of traditional direct marketing either. Connecting with customers by mixing the two methods is critical.

Smart utilization of familiar and inviting direct mail and other messaging campaigns can do wonders for branding and building consumer trust. Besides, if direct mail is so antiquated, would game-changing companies like Apple, Amazon and Google still be using it?