A search on the internet will turn up several generic statistics to answer this question, but in reality there is no one magic answer. A solid direct mail response rate will vary by customer and depends largely on the key elements involved in the mailing campaign.
A key factor that often proves to be more important than the actual response rate is the return on investment. Return on investment (ROI) is a percent that expresses how much money you gain as compared to the money you spend. While there are many factors that can affect the actual ROI, the hints below are designed to help you improve the return on your direct mail investment.
Improving direct mail ROI always starts at the beginning, with the end in mind. Ask yourself these questions:
1. What is the goal of this campaign?
Lead generation, sales, increase awareness, drive traffic to your store or web site…
2. How will you track your results?
Coupon redemption, register rings, website traffic…
3. What would you consider a success?
% Increase in sales, number of sales, number of visitors, increased email list…
Once you outline your goals you can establish a baseline and track responses against that baseline. For example, determine the average number of calls that you receive per week and compare that number to the number of calls you receive immediately following your mailing. Add a digital component to your mailing by way of a QR Code or direct URL to send readers to a landing page where you can track the number of visits and how those visitors interact with your website from that point on.
Know Your Target
Who are your best customers? Where do they live and work? How much money do they make? What are their hobbies? Identify who you wish to target with your mailing and then design the campaign to appeal to these customers and prospects that are exactly like them.
To get prospects to respond to your mail piece, you should always include a call to action. This might include a discount, special offer, guarantee of service, free download, or any other type of reward for taking action. Whatever your campaign offers the target audience concentrate on selling the benefits of responding to the offer. Remember that the goal is to get the person to respond so that they can purchase your product and increase your ROI. If you can get someone interested enough to respond to the offer, then you have the chance to get them to buy.
Hire a graphic designer who understands mail. You have only a few seconds to grab your readers’ attention. A designer who understands direct mail can create a piece for you that gets the attention it needs to turn into a sale.
To be truly effective with any marketing you must follow through with the tracking the results. Be sure that your staff is also ready to help you track results by collecting coupons, counting phone calls, or simply taking note of where customers are coming from. If you don’t track your results, it may be difficult to know if your mailing campaign was a success.
Wondering about the return you might expect from your planned mailing campaign? Want to see what would happen to your ROI if you were to increase your market coverage or change the product/service you were promoting? Did you track your results from a recent campaign and now want to confirm your ROI? Click here to use our interactive ROI Calculator.