This year, the large volume of active social media and email users make it seem like digital advertising is the haven of marketing communications.  The problem with that assumption is digital advertising fulfills consumer demand that has already been created by another source. 

With traditional forms of media, such as Direct Mail, advertisers can get in front of the consumer well before any interest to purchase has been created. They create demands that didn’t exist earlier,   enhancing the chances of reaching new customers.  Direct mail marketing is more important to have as part of any companies marketing mix.  The world’s largest digital conglomerates such as Google and Amazon, rely on direct mail as part of their new customer acquisition strategy.  There’s a specific place for both types of marketing, and firms need both to be great. Consumers spend more time of their day online and on their mobile smartphones than ever before, and it’s no secret to businesses. From social media to video streaming, marketers are continually looking for new ways to increase the reach and engagement between their brand and consumers.

This constant pursuit of “what’s new” in marketing can make tried and tested engagement tools like direct mail fall at the wayside. The ability of e-mail marketing to target and personalize its audience can yield an incredible return on investment, pushing up the consumer response rate. There are an overdependence and oversaturation of firms relying on digital marketing as their sole engagement tool, and consumers are on the receiving end of what is often thought of as unwanted clutter.

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Today,  26% of desktop users and 15% of iPhone/tablet users use Adblock. Even without Adblock services, consumers were earlier flooded with digital advertising that they tend to tune out completely. But, brands can engage with consumers on platforms other than digital, to experience a positive ROI. Direct mail for example, still proves to be a robust marketing tool to keep consumers actively engaged with a brand’s products and services and during a moment where the reader’s mindset is more attentive to the message. In a recent case study, 93% of people confirmed using coupons from the mail in 2018 – this is up by 5% compared to 88% in 2017. Data Marketing and Analytics (DMA) reported that direct mailed coupons continue to remain viable due to a high average response rate of 5.1%. This is almost thrice the average response rate of email, paid search, online display, and social media combined.

Direct mail marketing is a great engagement tool, but its potential can be fully realized when used as a supplement to other existing marketing campaigns. Be it digital, traditional or social, the capabilities direct mail marketing offers can enhance any engagement campaign, targeting consumers that otherwise would have got ignored the marketing strategy.

Here are a few ways marketers can implement direct mail into their strategy to boot ROI:

  • Use direct mail to connect with non-digital responders: Direct mails enable us to reach out to people who simply ignore or block digital ads and messages. Firms should keep a list of non-responders and create a direct mail marketing campaign targeting those particular individuals.
  • Create one hub for both digital and direct mail offers: Creating one hub for digital and direct mail campaigns promotes cohesive campaigns and boosts ROI.
  • Combine QR codes with personalized websites: While QR codes haven’t been able to sustain a marketing campaign by themselves, personalized URLs to these campaigns allow marketers to gain actionable insights into customer preferences.

Brands need to realize that for a successful campaign, marketers must think about the variety of mediums they can use to interact with their customer base. By being creative with a wide array of marketing channels available, businesses can achieve higher brand awareness and recall, and increase ROI.

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