• GFI Digital

The Value of Direct Mail in Marketing Communications



In the constant battle for consumer attention, printed direct mail sometimes struggles to get the attention it deserves when marketing managers are creating their budgets. In today’s world, marketing is a continual struggle over which methods (or combination of methods) will work best for acquiring new customers and maintaining existing customer relationships. Ongoing research provides actionable insight on what consumers value in the marketing pieces they receive across various communication channels.


How Does Direct Mail Stack Up?

According to Keypoint Intelligence’s survey data, consumers’ opinions about direct mail remain quite positive, even in this digital age. In relation to direct marketing messages, consumers were more likely to agree that they read most of their direct mail. They were also more likely to consider their printed direct mail relevant, and reported spending more time reviewing this mail when it was personalized and relevant.



The data in the chart clearly shows that consumers pay more attention to direct mail—whereas 55% of respondents reviewed most of their printed direct mail, only 38% of these same respondents read most of their digital marketing messages. We all know how easy it is to mass-delete or ignore spam e-mail or unsolicited digital messages. In contrast, printed direct mail pieces are at least individually considered before the recipient makes a decision about keeping or discarding them.


Combining an online presence with a direct mail presence can ensure your company gets noticed. Multi-channel communication (communicating with clients or customers through more than one medium) is something organizations today are increasing in their marketing strategies. In fact, direct mail still accounts for the highest share of enterprises’ overall marketing spend.


Firms of all sizes spend marketing funds on a variety of channels. Diverse messaging is important because today’s customers and prospects favor different media. One potential customer might favor digital communications, whereas another prefers paper.


Mail is a way to spread the word about your company’s offerings or simply bring attention to your brand as a whole. Don’t forget: although digital communication is effective, print remains a powerful means of communication.


Direct mail is less cluttered than email. Consumers receive 3.5 times more digital messages than printed messages in a typical week. Sending someone direct mail increases the chance of engagement due to the fact that there is usually less competition in their mailbox compared to their email inbox, and direct mail is not as immediately disposable as an email.


An important part of putting together a direct mail campaign is deciding how you are going to stand out. One way to do this is avoiding anything that looks boring. Many people flip through their mail and immediately throw away anything they consider “junk.” There are ways to make your mailer stand out so someone takes a second glance and becomes curious.


Surveys have found that 41% of Americans look forward to collecting their mail each day (Gallup). Additionally, nearly 60% of consumers are reading all or most of the direct mail pieces they receive (Keypoint Intelligence). This enthusiasm for mail can translate to engagement and call-to-action.


According to neuroscience researchers, tangible materials, like direct mail, leave a deeper impression on the human brain by activating regions associated with the integration of visual and spatial information. This is even truer when that tangible material is interesting-looking and intriguing. One way to have more fresh and innovative direct mail is to print it on a quality machine. Printing in-house can save your business money, but it is important not to sacrifice quality when you choose to print in-house.


Direct mail pieces with color and bolder graphics are more likely to be noticed than a boring black-and-white flyer or postcard. Contact us to learn what printers can give you better-quality color printing.


Along with color and bold graphics, interactive prints are extremely effective as well. Folded media like brochures invite the reader to look through multiple sections of information. Some multifunction printers come with an Internal Multi-Folding Unit that can fold the paper for you! Having a visually engaging mailer is more likely to generate responsiveness and strike curiosity that can bring your brand to the top of someone’s mind.


If you are really looking to make your mail pop, a RICOH production machine can do things no other printer can. It goes beyond CMYK color and can give your prints effects such as neon colors, clear toner embellishment, and can print on a wide variety of sizes and materials. They are capable of printing booklets, catalogs, and magazines for companies that want to maximize the information in their mailer. Physically printed products like catalogs linger in offices and homes long after emails are deleted!


We can help you find the machine that will change the way you print direct mail. There is no better time than now to expand your reach in a way that does not involve in-person interaction.