How a new fascination with an old channel is grabbing business buyer attention
Overflowing inboxes and a barrage of pop-ups have decreased our attention spans and caused in-box triage strategies that delete messages literally in the blink of an eye. Printed direct mail, on the other hand, causes pause while you decide if the envelope deserves to be opened. It’s this tangible interaction that makes print such a memorable and valuable link in the customer acquisition chain.
According to a Canada Post Report, 74% of Canadian consumers always or sometimes notice advertising in direct mail while 86% of Canadian consumers open mail that’s personally addressed to them.
Whether you’re producing a digital or printed direct mail campaign, it requires that you know who it’s going to and what type of an offer (call-to-action) matters enough to prompt an open or click.
The CMO Council forecasts direct mail volume will increase at an average of 4 or 5% annually.
People shy away from Direct Mail for any number of reasons. Cost is a primary concern and so is fear of print. This is because the digital landscape has changed the way print is purchased and consumed. However, new technologies, presses, software, papers, inks, finishes, and more have opened infinite business potential for both seasoned and new print providers. It’s also why printers are uniquely poised to reduce fear, expose print’s value, and drive business.
Integrated direct mail and digital campaigns boost attention spans – people spend 39% more time engaging in direct mail vs digital campaigns alone, cites Canada Post.
Direct Mail is data driven
For a long time, personalization meant inserting someone’s <FIRST NAME> and/or <LAST NAME> into a form field throughout a document. Today, technology has removed those shackles and liberated us with unlimited data mining, audience segmentation and predictive modeling opportunities. Looking at the data through a variety of lenses, you can isolate the information that will help you embrace and then entice a new generation of print buyers.
Late in October 2019, Prime Data – a data-driven direct-mail and marketing solutions provider, began offering direct mail and inkjet printing through Print Three locations across Canada.
Direct Mail, whether digital or print, is only as good as the data driving it. It’s why data-driven companies like Prime Data are partnering with Print providers like Print Three – and why marketers are excited.
Print Transcends generations
One of the major factors driving the growth in the print industry is the increasing need to keep customers engaged through communication over every channel they use. According to Forbes, Generation Z and millennials combined are the biggest consumer group in history – they’ll soon account for $4 billion in discretionary spending. Highly personalized and customized direct mail engages these buyers with a memorable brand experience. Adding textures and finishes like embossing, debossing, raised ink, foil or glitter teases people to do more than just see the print. It entices them to experience a truly unique sensory experience that screams out: “Touch me!”
According to the USPS, 84% of millennials take the time to look through their mail, 87% like receiving direct mail, 57% have made purchases based on direct mail offers and 50% say they like to discover what the mail brings every day and consider time spent looking at and reading it time well spent.
Print is Phygital
Simply put, phygital solutions enable brands to bridge the physical-digital gap and engage customers with an experience that transcends platforms, devices and location. Brands like Netflix, Amazon, Shopify and Nike are using physical stores and “pop-ups” to provide memorable immersive experiences – that showcase a wonderland of print.
Using neuroscience, Canada Post showed how physical print-mail increased conversions when combined with digital e-mail. Integrating direct mail with digital actually was better at driving consumer action than just using one or the other. Combined, the results showed:
Print is a Premium Channel
For a while, direct mail (junk mail as I knew it growing up) was abandoned in favour of digital. Today, this premium channel is being embraced as an integral part of the customer acquisition process – through multichannel campaigns founded on the psychology of marketing and behavioral science – to connect with a new generation of print and business buyers.
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Portions of this article were published with permission in Graphic Arts Magazine.
Image by Gerhard Gellinger from Pixabay