Deliver a bit of cheer

A postcard arriving in the post may be welcome read at the current time

Without wishing to state the obvious, it's tough for all businesses at the moment across every sector (well, apart from those producing toilet rolls!). All too often marketing is one of the first activities to be shelled during difficult times. Yet, as businesses look to do whatever trade they can, or diversify and change how they operate in order to best help customers, there's an argument that the need is greater than ever before.

Business, and all it's activities hereon is just going to have to be carried out slightly differently to how it’s been done before and marketeers need to think ‘outside the box’ (sorry, I hate that expression but needs must!).

Direct mail is all too often thought of as 'old school', an archaic form of marketing that incurs cost. But what isn't always appreciated is that, for many successful marketeers, direct mail has never gone out of fashion and that cost actually generates a far greater ROI than other channels.

If ever we needed proof of how well direct mail can perform, we saw it from not one, but two clients, working in very different sectors on one day at the end of the last week.

One is a publisher of a number of outdoor pursuit Journals. As part of a campaign to win back lapsed subscribers to one of their titles, two weeks ago we printed and mailed a postcard mailer to 500 previous customers. We’ve found out today that this mailing, in conjunction with other marketing activity, has resulted in over 700 new orders. Whilst we haven’t yet received a breakdown of how many came as a direct result of the DM campaign, our client has said it performed “extremely well”. It also demonstrates the importance of a multi-channel campaign.

Another client who is currently run off their feet is an art and craft tv shopping channel. We’ve been mailing their monthly members’ magazine and membership packs even before the time of Coronavirus (which already feels like a distant memory) memory. This has been supported through other direct mail activity, such as a discount promotional postcard we mailed out just a couple of weeks ago.

At this current time, with everyone being confined to spending time at home, it’s not surprising that demand for home-based art and craft activities are greater than ever before. But it shows the importance of keeping in contact with customers on a regular basis, again, through a mix of marketing channels.

In addition, we also received a call from a new customer. They provide online services to retailers wanting to run a direct mail campaign to promote their services (clearly at a time that more retailers are looking to increase there online capacity). This is great example of how direct mail, often seen as a ‘traditional’ and ‘old fashioned’ is being used by new age, technology and online companies in order to generate interest and business.

Direct mail should never be overlooked as a channel to target existing or potential customers. No other channel connects with the audience on a one-to-one level. Yes, there is an associated cost over digital marketing, but what needs to be considered is the ROI. And, with the discounts we can offer on postage, it’s often far better value than many marketeers realise.

Some of the benefits of direct mail include:

  • It’s tangible – mail can be picked up from the doormat and read straight away. With more people at home at the moment, with time to have a proper look through what arrives in the post, there’s never been a better time to
  • Almost 25% of direct mail is passed around to others in the household.
  • Mail is proven to stay in the household for an average of 17 days – far longer than other channels.
  • It’s personal – we all look twice at something if we see our name in print but personalisation stretches far beyond just printing someone’s name. We can make mailers personalised to each recipient using graphics, colour, imagery, offers and promotions etc. to make each mailer completely bespoke.
  • And, when you work with KJS, with all our services under one roof, we can turn your mailings around quickly. It’s not unusual that we turn some campaigns around within 24 hours. This is vital even more so at the current time when customers are trying to react to events changing on a daily basis.

Whether you’re looking to drive traffic to your website, sell direct from a catalogue or send letter notifications, direct mail will get seen, get noticed and get read.

During these unprecedented times, when the health of all those around us must be our priority, it feels wrong to focus on the best way forward for businesses. But, that said it's still as important as ever for companies to keep in touch with their customers. And, with the people having no option other than be at home at the moment, a postcard dropping through a letterbox might just at help deliver a bit of cheer!