Why Direct Mail Gets Opened More Than Email

Written by | Direct Marketing

Do friends and relatives still send your holiday card by mail? Or do they instead dash off an email, or post a message on Facebook to everyone at once?

Only one of those greetings offers the more personal touch and is most likely to be opened and read. We’ve previously discussed why direct mail still matters in the age of social media.
Here are a few more reasons why you should consider direct mail as part of your next integrated marketing campaign, as highlighted by Entrepreneur.

Get Personal

Direct marketing doesn’t get much more personal than direct mail. A compelling message allows you to gain direct access into someone’s residence or workplace. Your mail gets a spot at their kitchen table or desk, where you can present your product or service in the comfort of your prospect’s own home, without hiring a door-to-door sales team.

On the other hand, email messages are competing with a variety of digital distractions. In this era of multitasking, the competition is fierce for attention from smart phone users and computer users.

Be Trustworthy

Traditional mail has a better chance of getting opened than most emails. Many people don’t fully trust electronic communications. Email phishing scams are widespread and unsolicited emails with links or attachments are viewed as suspicious.

Your email may inadvertently end up flagged as “junk” or have images blocked by the filter. Certain words (think “Free!”) that might work in a direct mail letter will get you flagged as spam in email.

Direct mail doesn’t have the same problems. Attach all you want to your mailer. Fancy, bulky packages are a sign of something special inside when they arrive.

Special Delivery

Remember “You’ve got mail?” Emails used to be something special way back in the ‘90s.

These days, direct mail feels special because there simply aren’t as many people doing it. The difference can be as simple as a different colored envelope, or a font that makes the address look handwritten. Even a traditional physical stamp (versus a postage meter) can add a special touch.

Other proven direct mail gimmicks such as bulky or unusual shapes also help generate interest. You can also include free promotional items with your mailer as a small gift. Of course, it’s not so easy to send a keychain or a pen with an email.

Avoid Inbox Clutter

Do you get more emails each day than you actually open and read? You’re not alone.

A report by Epsilon revealed that 77 percent of consumers sort through their physical mail as soon as they get it.

According to the U.S. Postal Service, 98 percent of people check their mail daily, which means your direct mail message is far more likely to get read and less likely to get buried than email.

Email might sound more environmentally friendly and cost effective, but that also means there’s a lot more competition for attention. Meanwhile, direct mail offers a greater chance for you to stand out from the competition. To help boost your response rates in the year ahead, ask your creative services provider about the latest direct mail trends and list-management practices.

Last modified: September 21, 2017

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Why Direct Mail Gets Opened More Than Email

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