Why people of all ages – even the youngest, most tech-savvy – love print marketing and direct mail.
In September 2012, Internet giant Google chose to design, print, and utilize direct mail. They made sure that great numbers of people opened their mailboxes to their familiar, multi-colored logo with a crisp, neatly folded printed piece that offered inside secrets on “How to Get Your Small Business to Show Up on Google.” Attached was a coupon for $100 in free advertising. In this cursor-blinking ready, smartphone-as-an-extra appendage society, why would arguably the greatest online presence on earth resort to organizing a printed campaign?
Perhaps a study on digital vs. direct mail marketing completed by Ball State University can answer: A resounding 70-90% of the respondents to their survey indicated that while email plays a “vital role,” direct mail is still a dominant force, driving purchases in an irreplaceable way for customers across a wide spectrum. In fact, all age groups confessed that they made purchases based specifically on a direct mail piece they took out of their mailboxes.
Conclusion: Google used direct mail for the same reason we little guys use it… because direct mail works!
Do you think Millennials prefer to receive your messages digitally? WRONG. They hope you leave them printed gifts in their mailboxes!
Born between 1980 and 2000, there are 80 million strong (and spending) members of the highly touted Millennial generation. They represent $200 billion in purchasing power and by 2020, Forbes magazine says they will define 50% of the workforce. And guess what? Millennials LOVE print. They eat it up. They are as sick of pop-up ads and digital come-ons as the rest of us.
Here, the generation that is supposed to be the most plugged in shun their gluttonous digital inboxes and turn to the authentic mailbox that contains what they receive as gifts from brands wise enough to print something cool and smart for them. InfoTrends teaches us through a most recent study on printing and added-value services that Millennials are more likely than any other generation to read your company’s direct mail, believe it or not. It adds that 25% of this younger generation looks to reading the direct mail they are presented with as a leisure activity and they take their time to sort and get into the content more than other generations, according to this particular study.
And they don’t just engage with direct mail content, they ACT on it!
80% of Gen-X successors sleep with their phones right next to their beds and yet it is printed engagement that puts them in the spending mood in a way on which you can capitalize, if you are a small business owner. According to Compu-Mail, 92% of these Millennials are influenced to make a purchase decision (as opposed to the 78% influenced by email).
Brands of the world, here this: 80% of Millennials want you to entertain them, and they find direct mail entertaining – (based on a statistic from IWCO Direct)
You would be correct to assume that all generations appreciate print marketing. It is important to emphasize that the youngest consumers love it too in order to strike down the misled idea that digital advertising is all that is necessary. With that understood, let a recent Compu-Mail study assure you that 67% of physical mail is considered “more personal than electronic.” However, it is more important than ever before to reach out to your target audience through all channels and to do so in a quality way.
There is a lot of energy and buzz around the use of the latest apps and the more established social media marketing outlets, but we need to be more attentive to quality than ever before to cut through the sheer digital mass, most of which is not of high quality, targeted or complimented by a professionally designed and executed print campaign. The expectation of value and the need to make your content spectacular is higher than ever before because it is all too easy to click your brand away and move on. Print makes your digital efforts stronger. If it is done with the assistance of a digital print, design and marketing specialist, it can properly complement your brand online, reaching your specific audience and making them feel that you hear them. A lot is said about the tangibility of print and for good reason. It breeds trust and it impresses people with a REAL brand presence…and a couple of high value offers.
If you apply the fruits of your digital analytics to your direct mail campaign, you will earn a peek into the desires of your audience and have a better idea about what to give them from discounts to free shipping to added services. From there, your design specialist can help you isolate your most effective message in order to drive the most traffic online, in person and into conversions.
What can go wrong with direct mail? Doing it yourself without professional help!
Studies repeatedly confirm its efficacy, but using direct mail to promote your brand can fall flat if you do not know what you are doing. It is a giant digital world out there and while this traditional print marketing channel is powerful, remember you are a layperson when it comes to design and printing so to hit your mark, you need help. It is all too easy to misread or not even bother to look at your metrics and therefore you are not sure how often, when or how to target what you are putting into the mailboxes of your potential and current clients. If what you send isn’t timed well and if it is misdirected, you will seem outdated and out of touch. I mean, you don’t want to send your Army/Navy promotion addressed to the resident 3 year old girl.
The neat thing about the modern printing industry is that digital and direct marketing are not only working together for you, print is adopting digital concepts like QR codes and virtual reality so it is more “digitally interactive” than ever before. So, the gift of your brand presence in their mailbox makes what was once regular mail a genuine real-time experience.
Neal Sugarman owns International Minute Press in Cary, NC, and he is an invaluable source of digital print, design and marketing solutions for his B2B clients with direct mail as a potent ingredient in the mix. Minuteman Press franchises review the specific needs of each client through personal consultation so that their message cannot get lost and their money not wasted on a weak, incomplete effort. Neal says, “There is no one way to effectively market your business. It requires a constant and deliberate effort to create a variety of touchpoints with your customers. Social media or website marketing can be an effective part of this effort, but they represent only a few tools needed for success. Print is still a major part of most companies’ marketing efforts, even in today’s digital world. Print media is effective in summarizing your company’s features and benefits. It can be a brochure used as a hand-out on a sales call, a rack card in your lobby or a banner used at a fair. Direct mail can be extremely effective if designed and planned well. It will reach people at home and it will reach businesses to help cover your target audience from every angle. It can be a great tie-in with all the other advertising you do.”
According to Canada Post, “every time a brand makes contact with a customer via mail, they embed themselves in it, tapping into the emotions involved, nestling within the intimate home setting, and taking advantage of the brand reinforcement that comes with its often prolonged shelf life.”
Dealing with digital mail means pings and notifications through the day and we can use the speed of it to our advantage, but if you wish to promote your brand it is a tightrope walk that can lead to a tumble into the online marketing abyss where your brand is just another of many filling our inboxes in relentless and not so creative ways. If you are to use digital marketing (and you should), make sure you go to a marketing services provider such as Neal Sugarman from Minuteman Press and your campaign will be tailored to fit your exact goals.
In marketing gossip circles, assumptions are made that digital marketing is preferred these days for its speed and its ease, but studies prove that across all generations (even the youngest working adults) actually prefer the tradition of taking physical mail from their mailboxes into their homes for a ritual of sorting and perusing that is considered meditative in its process by many. It is an ideal way for you to take your brand, print your message with an offer just for them and put your presence in their mailboxes to be received as a welcome gift, one they have proven to respond to by making themselves clients.
To learn more about joining the #1 rated Minuteman Press franchise family, call us at 1-800-645-3006 or simply fill out the contact form on this page.