Email Marketing Tricks to Boost Direct Mail Performance

14 July 2020 / By Mike Gunderson
Email Marketing Tricks to Boost Direct Mail Performance on gundersondirect.com
Reading time: 5 minutes

Despite their differences, the goals of email and direct mail are similar and some of the techniques can crossover between the two channels.

Email and direct mail marketing have a lot in common, both serving the primary goals of raising awareness of your brand and making some sales. How the two marketing methods go about reaching these goals differ, but there are techniques you can use from one to be more successful in the other.

By taking advantage of technology, for example, you can make your direct mail offers more accessible and bring your brand to a broader audience.

You can also look at how email marketing generates clicks and use similar methods to improve engagement with your direct mail.

As you test your direct mail, make adjustments and don’t be afraid to incorporate aspects of email marketing that are proven to be useful in your campaign.

Direct the reader to a landing page

One of the principal purposes of a marketing email is to funnel a potential customer from their email inbox to a landing or sales page. You can do the same thing with direct mail, although with some slight adjustments.

For starters, you can’t include clickable links in a piece of direct mail, so you’ll have to get creative. Marketers are using QR codes as an easy way to bring readers to their websites and push them further along in the sales funnel. A QR code is essentially a barcode that users scan with their phones to go directly to a web page.

Near-field communication (NFC) is another technology you can use in conjunction with direct mail. NFC is used to transfer information between two electronic devices in close proximity and it’s appearing practically everywhere, such as when paying with your phone at a checkout.

By adding NFC technology to your mailing, recipients can load offers directly onto their smartphones from the marketing material. This technology also allows marketers to direct customers to sales pages on their phones, which can easily be personalized, and to track the information they present to customers and their reactions, too.

The hope is that by integrating technology into your direct mail campaign, you’ll make it easier for potential customers to respond, much like with email.

Present exclusive offers

When you open a marketing email, it’s often because the title promises some exclusive benefits for email subscribers.

Maybe the email will include a promo code for a discount, or possibly you’ll receive early access to a product that isn’t yet available to the general public.

The time delay between creating a direct mail campaign and it reaching customer mailboxes can discourage marketers from taking this approach, but that’s a mistake because customers want to feel special.

By including an exclusive promotional offer or discount code in your direct mail, you make customers feel like they’re receiving an exclusive benefit that isn’t available to the general public. In doing so, you not only give them a reason to respond but also develop brand loyalty because they feel like you’re taking care of them.

Create appealing marketing

Email marketers know how challenging it is to get a reply, as potential customers end up deleting or ignoring many of their messages. However, savvy emailers increase those response rates by making sure their emails always feature content that recipients want to read and that their subject lines and titles encourage clicks.

When sending direct mail, don’t take readership for granted. You shouldn’t assume that someone from every household will read your content just because it came to their mailboxes.

Much like an email advertises with its subject line, you’ll want to make sure your direct mail is as physically appealing as possible and gives readers a reason to open it.

Beginning with the most visible portion of the mailer is a key strategy. An outer envelope can include teaser copy or a window that reveals a portion of what’s inside. A postcard might use imagery, a bold statement, and colors that highlight the message.

Follow up on your first mailing

Once you’ve sent your first mailing, follow up with a second round. Email marketers do this frequently because they understand that people get busy and forget to respond. When an email gets buried in an inbox, the chances of a reply significantly shrink.

Direct mail tends to sit around the house for longer and, therefore, your window for receiving a response is wider. At the same time, you should follow up to remind consumers who didn’t have time or forgot to respond to your initial mailing.

It also helps to include a simple opt-out option on your direct mail, so you don’t waste your time and money sending mail to someone who isn’t interested.

Consider the timing

When you wake up in the morning, marketing messages from many brands often flood your inbox. That’s because advertisers know that most people check their inboxes first thing in the morning, and they want to be among the first to reach you for that day.

While you don’t have control over the time of day, or even the specific day, your direct mail arrives at a particular house, you can send it at a time that ensures customers will have enough time to react.

Generally, you should send your first promotional letters four to six weeks before the sale, event, or expiration date, giving customers time to follow-up. This timeline differs from email because an email can reach customers immediately, and they, in turn, can make an immediate purchase.

Getting the most from your direct mail material

Integrating email marketing techniques into your direct mail campaign opens up new ways to attract customers and extends the life of your message with consumers.

Gunderson Direct is a full-service direct mail marketing company that can assist with every aspect of your advertising campaign. If you’d like to use some of these email marketing tricks to spice up your mailing strategies, our team can get you started. Visit our contact page to set-up your free consultation.

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About The Author

Mike Gunderson

Mike Gunderson is the founder of Gunderson Direct, Inc., a direct marketing agency that helps businesses drive new leads and close more sales through traditional offline channels, especially direct mail.

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