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Effective marketing is important for any type of business, but it’s especially essential for small to medium business owners. Smaller and newer companies are less likely to have budgets for investing in big, grand marketing campaigns. Ironically, however, these businesses feel the impact of effective (or ineffective) marketing more acutely.
Effective and relevant marketing is essential for the continued survival of SMEs, so it’s important for business owners to have a grasp of what works and what doesn’t. Previously, we’ve talked about ‘6 Ways to Improve Your Mobile Ad Campaigns‘. Today, we’ll take the more traditional route and talk about a technique that’s well-worn but still surprisingly effective: direct mail.
The first thing that businesses should know about direct mail is that it’s cost-effective. When compared against more modern approaches like email newsletters or PPC advertising, direct mail definitely seems less advanced. However, as a method, it’s got fantastic staying power, and that’s because of its cost-effectiveness.
Research by the Canada Post found that direct mail is more likely to motivate responses from customers than digital media. Direct mail marketing has one of the highest ROI among modern marketing techniques, which means you get more results per dollar spent.
The nature of direct mail marketing also means that you get a longer marketing shelf life when compared to digital advertising. That can be a big deal for SMEs, who don’t often have the funds for sustained digital campaigns. Triadex Services reports that the shelf life of direct mail is an average of 17 days.
Compared with email marketing, which often only lasts a few seconds or minutes, that longevity is incredible. With direct mail, you’re more likely to stay in customers’ minds for longer, and for small to medium enterprises that brand recall is a huge benefit.
According to statistics collected by Forbes, 71% of consumers feel frustrated when their shopping experiences aren’t personalized. Direct mail marketing is able to clearly address that on several levels. First, it can’t get more personal than literally holding marketing materials in your own hands.
Direct mail brings the campaign straight to the customer’s home— quite literally. Second, because direct mail makes use of sophisticated mailing lists that have been built over the years, it’s more likely to be relevant to the target market. Personalization is built into direct mail, and can often be the deciding factor between an effective campaign and an ineffective one.
Finally, unlike other traditional marketing techniques, direct mail campaigns are highly traceable. Entrepreneur has an article on ways to track your direct mail campaign results, including using tracking codes or a dedicated phone line or landing page to track leads.
With direct mail, you can not only test its effectiveness as a technique, but also the effectiveness of one type of material versus another, or the impact of your campaign on a specific mailing list. There are dozens of different configurations you can use to determine the effectiveness of direct mail. Additionally, you can use the data from your campaign to improve responses and future campaigns, much in the same way you use data from digital marketing.