Direct Mail's Value in Omnichannel Marketing

Woman holding an iPhone and MagazineWith the advent of digital communication methods, many theorized that hard copy mail would suffer a sharp decline. But while mail volumes certainly have dropped (and will likely never return to pre-digital levels), it would be a mistake to assume that mail is no longer relevant. Indeed, marketers are finding that hard copy mail is once again the cornerstone of their communication efforts, especially given the digital fatigue that plagues the younger generations.

Digital messages on their own are often ignored or distrusted, while hard copy mail pieces are anticipated, enjoyed, and promote customer engagement.

Mark Fallon, president & CEO of The Berkshire Company, a print and mail consultancy, attests to mail’s continued relevance and sense of legitimacy. “Many companies, nonprofit organizations, and government agencies rely on physical mail to connect with their customers,” he says. “[These are] statements, bills, and payments that companies need to thrive. Marketing mail drives online sales and charitable donations. [Furthermore,] many legal documents, like insurance cancellations or utility shutoff notices, must be delivered through the USPS. Some laws stipulate the class of mail or special services (e.g., Certificate of Mailing) that must be used when sending the notice. Changing those laws won’t happen overnight.”

iPad and magazine on a tableResearch in recent years has also proven that readers remember more of something they read when it’s presented in hard copy format as opposed to digital. “Neurological studies have shown that the human emotion and recall of hard copy outperforms our response and memory of digital messages,” confirms Kathleen Siviter, assistant executive director, National Association of Presort Mailers. “Hard copy mail has tremendous ability to evoke human response, not just through its visual components but with today’s technological advances, marketers are able to cost-effectively use paper texture, scent, fold/design, and more techniques to build on that human response to hard copy mail."

More and more businesses are realizing the impact hard copy mail has with respect to customer communications, and when combined with digital offerings, physical mail pieces produce some of the best results.

From placing QR codes on the mail piece that will link to a personalized webpage with offers specific to the recipient, to the United States Postal Service’s (USPS) Informed Delivery offering, which allows mailers to grab their customers’ attention via email before the mail piece even hits the mailbox, mail is proving itself to be a must for any marketer who wants to see concrete results from their omnichannel campaigns. Read more on the benefits for your business.

In addition to direct mail's value in omnichannel marketing, the USPS is providing critical services amid the COVID-19 pandemic. If you missed Monday's post on how you can help PRINTING United Alliance in urging Congress to add USPS to its industries receiving stimulus funding, click here.