Why You Should Be Integrating Direct Mail with Social Media
Whose Side Are You On? Find out why the winning answer is BOTH!
In the fight between print vs. digital, digital wins, right? Wrong. While social media hype has certainly revolutionized the advertisement industry, it hasn’t obliterated the need for direct mail marketing. In fact, social media marketing tactics were learned directly from direct mail! That’s why when it comes to print vs. digital, the real secret to success is not in an ‘either or’, but in an ‘and’ approach. When the two are used in conjunction with one another, that’s when substantial success starts to unfold.
Direct marketers love social media for one very obvious reason – it gives instant access to the hobbies, interests, online behavior, etc. of target consumers. It should come as no surprise that direct mail experts are not discouraging the use of social media; they are actually lauding it. And why wouldn’t they? Social media enhances direct mail, making it even more profitable for companies who utilize it.
By encouraging interaction across various social media channels, marketers can use known data to better target consumers. Right now most companies are using some form of social media marketing. Most likely you are probably one of them, aren’t you? Social media helps businesses gain a clearer idea of who their target audience is so that they can devise strategies to reach them, which is why direct mail marketing and social media marketing actually go hand in hand when cross-channel integration is effectively executed.
Kristin Hambelton, Vice President of Marketing at Neolane, Inc. suggests using social media “as a supplemental, multi-function tool within your cross-channel strategy.” For instance, if you notice that a particular recipient has a low e-mail open rate, you could send the message via a different channel (such as direct mail) in order to reinforce the communication that they are failing to absorb due to their low open rate.
Direct mail campaigns can also be successfully integrated with social media by incorporating icons or encouraging action, such as liking your business’ page on Facebook and driving recipients for your website. Marketers suggest offering some kind of reward, such a coupon, discount or access to an exclusive sale, etc. to entice your customer to take action. When done correctly, marketers who use a direct mail and social media combination witness an increase in customer engagement rates.
While many people tend to think that there are two types of consumers: tech driven and traditional, this simply is NOT true. In fact, experts have found that direct mail transcends age demographics and appeals to younger generations just as much as their older counterparts.
So, why exactly is the winning formula social media and direct mail marketing?
Researchers have found that tangible direct mail materials leave a long-lasting impression in consumer’s brains. Studies have also shown that consumers tend to view direct mail as more ‘real’, perhaps because direct-mail materials require a deeper emotional processing, which commits brand association to memory.
“Deliver magazine recently published a statistic: Customers who received a printed catalog spent more meaningful time on the company’s website and purchased 28% more on average than customers who did not receive a catalog. And that held for every age category.”
When strategically structured and executed, direct mail delivers real results!