The Complete Guide to Direct Mail Campaign Tools

[POSTALYTICS] The Complete Guide to Direct Mail Campaign Tools (Hub)

While direct mail is a less common method of reaching your leads and customers, statistics prove it’s far more effective. 

But here’s the catch: creating a great direct mail campaign isn’t as easy as picking an image from Canva and sending it in the post. It’s about creating the right message, conveying it effectively to maximize conversions, and sending the campaign to the right people. Fortunately, direct mail campaign tools can make your job easier without being cost-intensive.  

As a direct mail automation platform, we will help you learn more about these tools and how to utilize them to your advantage. Let’s get started. 

What is a Direct Mail Marketing Campaign? 

A direct mail marketing campaign involves sending a physical letter, mailer, brochure, etc., to your prospect’s mailbox through the United States Postal Service or any other delivery service available in your country. 

The common types of direct mail campaigns initiated by businesses cover onboarding mails, engagement mails, event invites, purchase reminder mails, offers and coupons. 

Many businesses use this strategy to introduce a new product or service. You can integrate direct mail campaigns with your online campaigns to target your prospects online and offline.  

With the advent of direct mail marketing tools, it’s possible to design, deploy and integrate campaigns and track responses in only a few days.

How Effective is Direct Mail Marketing? 

While a digital marketing strategy has advantages, direct mail marketing has shown tremendous results in recent years. 

Here are six reasons the direct mail marketing space has become so effective:

1. Mail is enjoyable 

Did you know that Americans feel most comfortable receiving direct mail compared to any other advertising channel, including social media ads and TV? This is because people are becoming increasingly frustrated with the volume of digital information being bombarded to them daily.  

Many businesses also create unique and engaging door direct mail campaigns that appeal to their audience and create a great experience for them. People like receiving direct mail due to such campaigns and the personalization that can now be implemented with direct mail tools. 

2. Better response than email 

The response rate for direct mail is 5X any other digital channel’s response rate, including email, paid search and even social media. 

The reasons why are threefold: 

  • It makes the receiver feel more important, as direct mail is rarely used by businesses these days.
  • Many companies personalize direct mail; when the recipient reads his/her name or sees any targeted copy, they are more likely to act.
  • With the advent of pURLs and pQR codes, taking action on direct mail is as easy as scanning with a mobile camera, and thus, response rates are generally higher.

3. Valuable for ABM 

Account-based marketing is a growth strategy that involves collaboration between marketing and sales teams. 

Collaboration often results in the creation of personalized experiences for valuable accounts. In addition, this improves the conversion rate for ABM, as direct mails do not need initial permission for GDPR compliance as email and text messaging often do. 

These direct mails are also targeted and creative so that you can create personalized experiences for your valuable existing customers. 

4. Reaches multiple customers 

Direct mail can have a wider reach than other digital marketing strategies, especially if your target audience is inactive on social media or email.  

It’s also effective for communicating with a customer base overwhelmed with online outreach. For example, if you’re addressing executives and managers that get a lot of emails and messages online, your mails could get shadowed or ignored. Direct mail, in such cases, can get your attention when digital ads would have missed it. 

Another advantage is that when you send direct mail to a household or office, you get the attention of more than one person.  

5. Less competition than email 

How many emails do you get in your inbox every day? We’ll guess it’s a lot. 

Your target audience is likely just as overwhelmed with emails, meaning your email may get lost amongst your competitor’s outreach. That’s why direct mail gives businesses a better chance to get noticed by their recipients. 

Even today, many businesses are not reaping the benefits of direct mail. That means while this market remains untapped, you face much less competition and have a greater chance to create a good impression. 

6. Creative and memorable outreach 

If you have a creative team in place, they will have a lot of fun creating direct mail campaigns because direct mail holds tremendous potential for out-of-the-box creativity. 

For example, to promote World Water Day, one marketing team sent direct mailers with a message that only became visible once soaked in water. 

Image source 

You can combine your direct mail efforts with digital marketing campaigns to create unique and memorable experiences. 

Direct Mail Marketing Campaign Tools 

You can create and deploy campaigns quickly with direct mail marketing campaign tools. Postalytics provides you with the following campaign tools on the platform. 

Self-service direct mail campaign wizards 

Postalytics allows you to create two types of campaigns: smart-send and triggered drip campaigns. You can choose one depending on your marketing goals and the campaign’s purpose. 

When you select one, the Postlaytics wizard walks you through the entire campaign creation process. This is perfect for beginners as it will not let you move on to the next step before completion. 

CASS/NCOA address verification 

If you’re following a manual process or your tool doesn’t provide address verification, you may get mail bounce back. You have to re-send it, which puts a crunch on your budget. 

Postalytics provides three ways to verify your addresses: (i) we clean mailing lists and automatically mark invalid addresses (ii) we run the address through CASS (Coding Accuracy Support System) to ensure the correct format and proper address (iii) put an end to “dead” mail by referring to NCOA (National Change Of Address) database. 

CASS/NCOA smart lists 

The smart send direct mail campaigns wizard in Postalytics uses lists imported from other tools. The wizard guides you through the entire process. Once you select the campaign you wish to create, you’ll be asked to fill in the recipient details from your list. 

You can even see the direct mail marketing cost savings from suppressing invalid addresses with CASS and NCOA smart lists. 

List/batch based campaigns 

With a few simple steps, you can create a list/batch based campaign in Postalytics. All you need to have ready is a mailing list and a selected design option. You can use a ready-made template in Postalytics, create a custom template in the Postalytics editor, or upload the design built in from another tool. 

Once this is done, you can get on to creating your list based smart send campaign. 

Multi-drop campaign wizard 

Would you let your salesperson call a prospect just once and never follow up? Probably not. That’s what multi-touch campaigns are for direct mail. 

You can create them easily using the “add a mail drop” feature by clicking the edit button after choosing the smart send campaign option. 

You can then fulfill all the steps and send unlimited mail drops. 

Multi-drop campaign segmentation by response 

You wouldn’t want to send multiple direct mails to everyone on your list. Today’s direct mail tools like Postalytics understand this and allow you to segment your audience based on their response (or non-response). 

This allows you to send subsequent direct mail advertising pieces with more targeted copy and personalization

For example, if someone responds to an offer you shared in the direct mail piece, you can send them a subsequent offer for the future or a simple thank you postcard. 

pURL/QR code landing page/conversion URLs 

You can personalize your landing pages using Postalytics’ variable data and logic. For example, this personalization could be in greeting the campaign target by name, pre-filling all or parts of a form on the landing page, varying imagery, offers, and CTAs for different personas, etc. 

Here’s what this looks like in action: 

Campaign response testing draft mode 

You no longer have to shell out money to test your direct mail campaigns. With the test mode feature in Postalytics, you can test your triggered drip campaigns to ensure everything works properly without using your credits or producing mail. 

You can easily switch to the Live mode once your testing is done and you want to start deploying your campaigns. 

Campaign response testing draft mode

Campaign scheduler 

With Postalytics, you can schedule and launch your campaigns in three easy steps: 

  • Use the drag-and-drop template builder or upload your creative
  • Upload your list or connect to your Postalytics integrated tools and import it
Campaign scheduler
  • Schedule or send a campaign with a few clicks

You can also read through the guides or let the wizard help you with all the steps to avoid missing out on anything. 

Triggered/drip-based campaigns 

You can easily set triggered mail workflows with the different integrations Postalytics has. These drip campaigns work 24 X 7 X365 and send out postcards and letters at the right moments in the customer journey. You can use these campaigns for different purposes, like engaging new leads with personalized letters, re-engaging with leads that have gone quiet on the email, etc. 

Here’s an example of a triggered mail campaign. 

Triggered campaign testing draft mode 

In a standard triggered drip campaign, you may be dealing with a lot of direct mail as opposed to sending just one direct mail. In such a scenario, you need to test all these mails and have the proper lists ready to target your audience effectively. 

When you trigger the mail to your campaign in test mode, a PDF will be generated, and you can easily proof the campaign for any errors or inconsistencies.

Variable return addresses 

You may have to use different return addresses for different campaigns/clients within a single campaign. For this, you can use variable data in Postalytics.  

This feature is currently available in Smart send campaigns only, and you’ll need to adhere to specific formatting within your data to utilize it correctly. 

Here’s a detailed guide to using this feature in Postalytics’ direct mail service. 

How Do Direct Mail Marketing Campaigns Work? 

To launch your direct marketing campaign, here’s a process you can follow: 

  • Define your goals: Do you want to increase visitors to your website? Or do you want to promote an offer? The goals you set will help you make informed decisions later on.
  • Know your audience: Understanding your audience demographics, behaviors and past actions will help you create targeted messages that improve conversions.
  • Create a mailing list: While you can purchase lists, the best way is to look into your existing data to create the list.
  • Decide the format: You can choose from formats like postcards, letters, self-mailers, catalogs, brochures, etc., depending on the purpose of your campaign.
  • Design your direct mail piece: When designing the piece, pay attention to the copy, white space, proper imagery and other design best practices.
  • Proof your mail: Before deploying the campaign, get your mail proofed by your team.

Final Thoughts 

Creating a successful direct mail campaign can reward you with tremendous results. The catch is strategically developing these campaigns by following the above steps and using online tools to help you create data-backed designs and personalizations. 

With Postalytics, you get all the tools you require in one platform, and you can even use ready-made templates if you’re just starting your direct mail journey. 

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