30 Direct Mail Statistics Worth Knowing

Posted on  by Compu-Mail

It’s that time of year again! Once again, we’ve pulled together a brand new list of direct mail stats to show why direct mail is still the best medium for cutting through the clutter and getting your marketing message directly in the hands of your customers.

Direct Mail Still Gets the Best Response

  1. Direct mail household response rate is 5.1% (compared to .6% email, .6% paid search, .2% online display, .4% social media). This is the highest response rate the DMA has ever reported, since coming out with the Response Rate Report in 2003.1
  2. Direct mail median household return on investment is 29% (compared to 124% email, 23% paid search, 16% online display, 30% social media).1
  3. At 6.6%, oversized envelopes have the greatest household response rates over other mediums (followed by postcards at 5.7% and letter-sized envelopes at 4.3%).1
  4. At 37%, oversized envelopes have the greatest household return on investment over other mediums (followed by postcards and letter-sized envelopes at 29%).1
  5. The response rate for direct mail among people aged 18-21 years old is 12.4%.1
  6. The top response rate tracking methods are online tracking such as PURLs (61%), call center or telephone (53%), and code or coupon (42%).1
  7. For every $167 spent of direct mail in the US, marketers sell $2095 in goods.2

The Bottom Line – Direct mail has the greatest impact because it offers a tangible experience for the customer. Oversized pieces stand out the most.

Personalization Boosts the Response Even Further

  1. Adding a person’s name and full color in the direct mail can increase response by 135%.3
  2. Adding a person’s name, full color and more sophisticated database information can increase the response rate by up to 500% vs not doing any of these things.3
  3. Targeting customers on a 1:1 level increases response rates up to 50% or more.4

The Bottom Line – People are even more likely to respond to a marketing message when it feels like it was written just for them.

Click here to see how to use data to power up your customer acquisition

It’s a Multi-Channel World Out There

  1. The average person receives more than 2900 marketing messages a day.5
  2. It can take up to 18-20 touchpoints to reach a customer for the first time.6
  3. The average number of mediums used by marketers is 3.4% (up from 2.7% in last year’s study).1
  4. Only 11% of marketers are just using one medium.1
  5. Single media users are most likely to use email (54%) or direct mail (22%).1

The Bottom Line – Your customers are on multiple platforms. Are your messages clear and consistent across all of them?

Direct Mail and Digital Work Together

  1. 90% visit website first before calling.7
  2. 96% leave without making a purchase.8
  3. Direct mail with digital ads yield 28% higher conversion rate.9
  4. Marketing campaigns that used direct mail and 1 or more digital media experienced 118% lift in response rate compared to using direct mail only.10
  5. Website visitors who are retargeted are 70% more likely to convert.11
  6. 26% of customers will return to a site through retargeting.12

The Bottom Line – Direct mail response rate can be difficult to track, because not everyone calls in right away. Most customers head straight to the web to learn more about the product online, rather than calling to speak to a sales representative about the product directly.

It’s Easier to Nurture Existing Interest than Create New Interest

  1. It is 10X harder to create new interest than nurture existing interest.13
  2. It can cost as much as 5-12X more to acquire a new customer than retain an existing customer.13
  3. The probability of selling to an existing customer is 60-70%, vs. the probability to sell to a new customer at 5-20%.13
  4. A 5% increase in retention yields profit increases of 25-95%.14
  5. The average response rate for direct mail pieces sent to former customers of a given brand is 18.4 percent.15
  6. The household cost per acquisition for direct mail is $26.40 (compared to $10.32 email, $20.32 social media, $16.22 paid search, $24.75 internet display).1

The Bottom Line – Use direct mail to nurture existing interest, keeping current customers and prospects engaged and delighted. While the cost per acquisition is higher for direct mail, average response rate and median return on investment is competitive enough to make up the difference.

Success is in the Data

  1. 40% of a direct marketing campaign’s success is in the data.16
  2. In general, purchased lists have a margin of error as high as 20-30% for various reasons (people move, change jobs, get married/divorced).
  3. 73% of firms aspire to be data-driven but only 29% of firms succeed at turning data into action.17

The Bottom Line – It’s critical to keep an accurate, updated customer database list.
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  1. DMA Response Rate Report https://thedma.org/
  2. Print Is Big http://www.printisbig.com/
  3. Canon Solutions America https://csa.canon.com/
  4. Data & Marketing Association https://thedma.org/
  5. FireSnap https://www.firesnap.net/blog/why-inbound-marketing-has-become-so-popular
  6. How to Kickstart Your Next Omnichannel Marketing Campaign https://compu-mail.com/blog/2017/03/06/kickstart-omnichannel-marketing-campaign/
  7. How to Transform Your Website Into a Marketing Powerhouse for a Mobile World http://www.huffingtonpost.com/ernesto-sosa/how-to-transform-your-website-into-a-marketing-powerhouse-for-a-mobile-world_b_9141792.html
  8. Google Analytics https://analytics.google.com/
  9. Non Profit Pro http://www.nonprofitpro.com/article/doctors-without-borders-uses-remarketing-retargeting-extend-reach/all/
  10. Merkle https://www.merkleinc.com/
  11. Criteo http://www.criteo.com/
  12. Retargeting: The 10 Stats you Probably Didnt Know http://blog.wishpond.com/post/85825723836/retargeting-the-10-stats-you-probably-didnt-know
  13. Invesp https://www.invespcro.com/
  14. Small Business Trends https://smallbiztrends.com/
  15. USPS Household Diary Study https://www.usps.com/
  16. Above the Fold Magazine http://www.abovethefoldmag.com/?q=article/40-40-20-rule-marketing
  17. Forrester Global State Of Strategic Planning https://go.forrester.com/

ABM MARKETERS: There are Vegetarians Lurking in Your Sales Org

poor salesJust when you think everything you have been doing as a marketer is starting to come together:

  • Enough content across enough of the sales pipeline to have something to talk to to a wider range of potential constituencies
  • The start of personalization on the third (maybe fourth) iteration of your website
  • Paid media that can be the sharp end of the spear for Account Based Marketing
  • The fact that you are dabbling in or even have rolled out some sort of lead scoring – dare I say: predictive?
  • The issue of data integrity across your martech and CRM platforms is a thing of the past (yeah, right)
  • You’re even getting data in and out of the stack in a much more friction free basis
  • Tech folks are coming to you talking API’s- tech’s version of sugar plums dancing in their head
  • You finally understand what a DMP is and what it should do
  • Heck – you can even explain to friends at a cocktail party the meaning of DSP, SSP, PMP and ATD

Now you are ready. Nothing but blue skies. Leads a plenty. Demand Gen-A-Go-Go. A marketing nirvana.

And then, it happens. You learn there are vegetarians in your sales org. Yup, that’s right, V-E-G-E-T-A-R-I-A-N-S: Bona fide, carrot-crunching critters who will not navigate an account.

And your whole marketing world domination teeters on the brink. And you did not see it coming.

I have news for you – there is a HUGE GAP in the marketing/sales continuum when it comes to effective use of a logical stack and a sound ABM strategy. And there are two major reasons for that gap:

  • Sales orgs are not being trained and introduced to ABM strategies fast enough to fulfill the aspirations of ABM
  • Since ABM is a forensic exercise built on many different data points – someone needs to own the forensic methodology that allows real ABM and data driven marketing to flourish

So, let’s get back to reality (and sales vegetarianism):

  • ABM establishes a new paradigm: essentially, the ACCOUNT = LEAD
  • The LEAD is not the LEAD – so the Glenngary Glen Ross notion of leads no longer applies
  • In order to understand the dynamic of an ACCOUNT – a thorough research-based approach needs to be taken
  • This means using as many tools and data sources at your disposal to form the basis of which, how many and what roles constitute a team of decision makers and also, the influencers whose jobs will be impacted by any buying decisions
  • This takes time and a solid process
  • At the end of the day, you want a solid view in on the corporate tree structure that forms the basis of info and intelligence that begets a specific playbook for that account
  • Every account is different – heck – we have learned that many accounts even defy the logic of going solely on PERSONAS – we’ve seen accounts that have people in the mix whose functional title has nothing to do with who you would think is in a decision making position

Now back at the all you can eat crudité platter, you will quickly learn that:

  • Sales people are trained to make calls – and they are very insecure when they are not making 20, 30, 40+ calls a day
  • Many would prefer a cold call list to actually learning how to actually penetrate an account through good use of tools and data
  • With all we know about how B2B buying decisions are made – AN ACTUAL LEAD may not even be in the decision making process – so knowing more about the account that a LEAD comes from will help with any communication with that LEAD
  • It’s not my job: I have been told straight on in not a few situations that this whole ABM, research thing is not my job – Just give me the damn lead
  • And, of course, sales compensation, in many cases is not aligned with ABM strategies

We have had clients tell us point blank that they wished they had never tried to flow ABM types of data and intel through their mainstream processes because they are rejected.

To be frank, the meat-eaters are not passive aggressive. You meat-eating hunters have the determination and mentality to get to an end goal.

Your task is to figure out: Do we, as marketers, hand all the intelligence, recommendations and to-do’s to make our ABM strategy work once in the hands of sales. Or, do we share and teach folks how to use the various tools that your org has spent so much money on – good tools that will act as the sales compass, astrolabe, telescope, etc…

Regardless, whatever you decide, you cannot underestimate the vast change in mentality at the sales level that ABM will bring. Across your ISR’s, BDR’s ASE’s, Field and Channel people on the front lines need to be armed with the right data to break through to find the right people that constitute a buying team inside any account.

While going to your sales organization and telling them that ABM requires a shift in process: from asking sales people to go from 100 calls per week to working on 8 – 10 strategic accounts with the goal of framing out what the account actually looks like. Rome is not built in a day. But, there are many ways to initiate and drive change that result in positive change. Those thoughts will be part of a future missive.

Right now I have to get to a meeting between marketing and sales and it’s my turn to bring the tofu and seitan mock duck and bok choi!poor sales.jpeg

#Marketers beware: Privacy Please: How the GDPR Can Elevate Marketing

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Boost your blog

A lot of small business proprietors are jumping on the blogging bandwagon and there is a very good reason for this. A blog is a really effective tool for your small business, if used properly. You’re most likely asking yourself if a blog can truly aid your business or if it is simply an additional […]

via How a Blog Can Boost Your Small Business — my five experts

Marketing Transformation and Artificial Intelligence

Artificial Intelligence and Marketing
Artificial Intelligence and Marketing

7 examples where artificial intelligence is transforming marketing:

1. Content curation

Predictive analytics allows Netflix to optimize its recommendations. This kind of clustering algorithm is continually improving suggestions, allowing users to make the most of their subscription.

Uniting information from diverse datasets is a common use of AI.

Under Armour is one of the many companies to have worked with IBM’s Watson. The sports apparel company combines user data from its Record app with third-party data and research on fitness, nutrition etc.

The result is the ability for the brand to offer up relevant (personalized) training and lifecycle advice based on aggregated wisdom.

2. Search

In 2015, Google admitted it was using RankBrain, an AI system, to interpret a ‘very large fraction’ of search queries. RankBrain utilizes natural language processing (NLP) to help find relevance in content and queries, as well as better interpretation of voice search and user context (e.g. Google Now).

3. Predictive customer service

Knowing how a customer might get in touch and for what reason is obviously valuable information.

Not only does it allow for planning of resource (do we have enough people on the phones?) but also allows personalization of communications.

Another project being tested at USAA uses this technique. It involves an AI technology built by Saffron, now a division of Intel.

Analyzing thousands of factors allows the matching of broad patterns of customer behavior to those of individual members.

4. Ad targeting

As Andrew Ng, Chief Scientist at Baidu Research, tells Wired, “Deep learning [is] able to handle more signal for better detection of trends in user behavior. Serving ads is basically running a recommendation engine, which deep learning does well.”

Optimizing bids for advertisers, algorithms will achieve the best cost per acquisition (CPA) from the available inventory.

When it comes to targeting of programmatic ads, machine learning helps to increase the likelihood a user will click. This might be optimizing what product mix to display when retargeting, or what ad copy to use for what demographics.

5. Customer segmentation

Plugging first- and third-party data into a clustering algorithm, then using the results in a CRM or customer experience system is a burgeoning use of machine learning.

Companies such as AgilOne are allowing marketers to optimize email and website communications, continually learning from user behavior.

6. Sales forecasting

Conversion management again, but this time using inbound communication.

Much like predictive customer service, inbound emails can be analyzed and appropriate action taken based on past behaviors and conversions.

Should a response be sent, a meeting invite, an alert created, or the lead disqualified altogether? Machine learning can help with this filtering process.

7. Image recognition

Google Photos allows you to search your photos for ‘cats’. Facebook recognizes faces, as does Snapchat Face Swap.

Perhaps the most exciting implementation of image recognition is DuLight from Baidu…Designed for the visually impaired, this early prototype recognizes what is in front of the wearer and then describes it back to them.

Protesting Trump is easy. These CEOs did the hard, adult thing at White House tech summit

Democrats and the left-wing media should take note.

CEOs at the American Technology Council summit this week at the White House displayed a level of maturity and leadership that is absent with Democrats and the left-wing media.

While many of the CEOs supported Hillary Clinton and aggressively oppose President Trump’s policies, they put aside their political ideology to seek ways to use their expertise to benefit the U.S. (and perhaps their investors).

The 18 CEOs and three university presidents were invited to the White House to explore ways technology can improve the federal government’s lagging operations. Unlike Democrats and the left-wing media that are intent on destroying Trump, the tech CEOs exhibited business-savvy pragmatism to make the most of their White House access.

The business leaders did what mature adults do — they met and talked despite divergent political views and likely personal animosity. Even though they have deep philosophical differences with Trump on numerous issues, they made progress on the issue of modernizing government technology while also freely expressing their political concerns.

Attending the technology summit was undoubtedly not easy for the major tech titans that reside in a progressive bubble. Most live and work in deep-blue states and cities surrounded by progressive Democrat employees, friends, and families.

Apple CEO Tim Cook, for example, held a fundraiser for Hillary Clinton last year and he strongly opposes Trump on immigration and environmental policies.

Following the 2016 presidential election, questioned by Apple employees about his decision to meet with Trump last December, Cook defended the meeting, saying, “Personally, I’ve never found being on the sideline a successful place to be.”

To date, Cook’s effort to influence Trump on political matters have not been successful. Cook lobbied Trump to stay in the Paris climate accord, and criticized Trump after the president decided to have the U.S. leave the agreement. Under Cook’s direction, Apple joined with almost 100 other companies in filing an amicus brief to oppose an executive order on immigration by Trump.

Despite being a high-profile critic of the administration, the president invited Cook and Cook participated in the American Technology Council meeting. Cook made the most of his access and pushed his idea to make computer coding a school requirement. Among other issues, he also expressed his views on the important role immigration plays in the U.S. economy, as well as the need for improvements in veterans’ health care.

IBM CEO Ginni Rometty also attended, despite Trump’s unpopularity with some of the company’s workforce.

During an interview on CNBC’s “Mad Money” with host Jim Cramer, Rometty said the summit was an opportunity to advance an issue she is personally passionate about — technology skill training for the future.

Following Trump’s presidential victory, IBM employees criticized Rometty and her open letter to the then president-elect, as many felt it was a tacit endorsement of Trump and that she offered the backing of IBM’s global workforce in support of his agenda.

One employee quit over Rometty’s outreach effort, and others signed a petition that included five demands (including Trump-related demands). Rometty cast aside the internal pressure and negative press and carried on to advance her fiduciary responsibility to shareholders.

In today’s politically correct world, the easy thing for Cook and Rometty would be to use their personal feelings to protest Trump and not participate in business summits. Such a decision would make them heroes in Progressiville.

Indeed, that’s the approach Tesla CEO Elon Musk and Disney CEO Bob Iger took with Trump. Musk followed through on his threat to leave White House business advisory councils over the Paris agreement. Iger also bolted from a business council group over Trump’s climate change decision.

Again: Protesting Trump is easy for business leaders that live and work in a progressive bubble. But taking your ball and walking away is not what real leaders do. Resisting Trump is the major focus for Democrats, and they refuse to work with the president on important policy issues, including health care and tax reform.

The left-wing media are also working hard to undermine Trump where their political agenda supersedes the truth. Democrats and the left-wing media should take note from the actions of the 18 tech CEOs at the White House this week.

Source: Protesting Trump is easy. These CEOs did the hard, adult thing at White House tech summit