With the summer months being typically a low volume period for direct mail coupled with the threat of a disruption of service by Canada Post, marketing mail volume has dropped significantly in recent weeks—by as much as 80% by Canada Post estimates.
We expect the mail service to continue without interruption at regular delivery standards while Canada Post and their employees’ union are in negotiations. Under these circumstances, today’s near-empty mailboxes present a unique opportunity for your brand.
While business customers and consumers are inundated with digital messages and emails, a well-crafted direct mail campaign is now likely to garner far more attention than ever before and give you a chance to break through the noise and reach your customers.
The Advantages of Direct Mail
While both direct mail and digital messages allow for targeted marketing, direct mail has a number of distinct advantages*:
- Direct mail enjoys a time slice in the life of the consumer. Collecting mail is part of the “coming home” routine, and is so embedded in life that many consumers have “ritualized” it — or made it a routine that is significant for them. People tend to sort it in the same part of the home every time: the kitchen, home office, living or dining room. Every time a brand contacts a customer via mail, it is a unique opportunity to embed themselves within and benefit from the positive emotions of arriving in the intimate home setting. This can increase a consumer’s openness to offers.
- Consumers are far more likely to notice, open and read mail than digital forms of advertising. Consumers state they are more likely to notice and read direct mail than email. One third say direct mail is the most effective way to get them to remember a product or service.
- More than twice as many consumers say they enjoy receiving direct mail than digital advertising. They’re more likely to associate feelings of happiness or surprise with physical advertisements, while digital ads are more often experienced as distracting or intrusive. Research in a Royal Mail paper even suggests more than half of consumers are more likely to feel valued and to have a better impression of a company if they contact them by mail rather than email.
- Direct mail is kept – catalogues and flyers often in the living room, other promotional mail on the fridge or by the couch, restaurant menus in a kitchen drawer. Mail that is kept and displayed presents repeated opportunities to engage the consumer.
- Direct mail persuades, starting by being a go-to source of information and inspiration early in the purchase journey. More than 9 in 10 consumers say they get ideas for household shopping from flyers, and check grocery flyers at least once a month. Around one in five used unaddressed mail for unintentional purchases, and one in three use it to help with planned purchases.
- Direct mail drives traffic, and is a powerful complement to the digital channel: a significant portion of consumers visit a website or a store, or engage in social media, in response to receiving direct mail or a catalogue.
*Research findings obtained from Canada Post’s Breaking Through the Noise, an ethnographic study that explores how consumers behave with mail, their attitudes and emotions toward it, and how they interact with it.
The bottom line
The mailbox is one of marketing’s least cluttered channels — helping to deliver high response rates and good return on investment. With so little competition for your customers’ attention, now is an ideal time to consider adding direct mail to your marketing mix.
Contact us now to discover more about how with the help of Kirk Marketing, direct mail can drive your business.