Michael Gonzales CEO of ValCards elaborates on Why Direct Mail is Not DEAD in 2014

For years we have been hearing direct mail being called “Dinosaur Marketing” in todays digital world. In 2014, this still is a common misconception. The facts are, according to Pitney Bowes survey, 76% of small businesses today say that their ideal marketing strategy encompasses a combination of both print and digital communication.

Direct Mail is an excellent way to get in front of potential consumers. And with the recent introduction of Every Door Direct Mail, it is easier than ever before for small businesses to reach their audience. From pizzerias to local financial offices, small businesses are praising the EDDM program from the U.S. Postal Service.
These following strategies are a must if you want to maximize your ROI:
1. Excellent Mailing List
The quality of the mailing list is responsible for 40% of a direct mail campaigns profitability. Targeting your audience is key. Here is a small example of Mailing List options –
  • Age Range
  • Income Range
  • Gender
  • Marital Status
  • Homeowner or apartment renter
  • Households with or without children
  • Age range for children
  • Households with seniors
  • Address type
  • Home value
  • Year home built
  • Length of residence
2. Variable Data

Variable Data Printing (VDP) is a great way to bring your mail pieces to the next generation of direct mail and more importantly, get more out of your precious marketing dollars. By adding personalized variable data to each mail piece – you are speaking directly to the recipient, addressing their specific interest or needs. By speaking directly to needs – statistics are showing response rates and correspondingly, returns on investments increasing considerably, thus actually reducing the cost per lead.

3. Direct-mail postcards The simplicity of the postcard is its secret to effectiveness. Your message is short and directly to the point. Postcards do not have to be opened, and therefore start selling at a glance. You are able to hold each customer’s attention for the duration of the postcard’s offer. Postcards can be used for a short survey to help you develop your next direct-mail campaign. You can offer a free gift if a customer signs up to your emailing list. Postcards are the best solution to direct marketing for those who are on a tight budget. They can be produced for pennies a piece and reach thousands of customers per mailing.
4. Free offers
A free pizza … free gift card for signing up … six month’s service free … The free offer is perhaps the most effective in all of business. People will always take something for free, and they’re usually willing to share valuable data such as contact information, demographics, opinions and other data you can use in future campaigns. What’s more, a free offer is like a carrot on a stick, you can use it to draw customers into upsells that really push profit.
5. Plastic. Not Paper.
Unique credit card thick plastic postcard mailers with card pop-out are generating the highest redemption’s compared to any other direct mail piece. They have been proven to produce 6-10 times higher ROI compared to paper postcards. The pop-out incentive card are being used to promote a gift card, coupon discount card, rewards card, loyalty card and VIP card.
6. Tracking
It seems that for a lot of businesses today simply use postcards on faith. Often the line you hear is, “I know that half of my marketing is working, I just don’t know which half”.  The problem with that thought is that good businesses don’t run on faith (at least not ones that want longevity). Tracking your postcard results should be an important step in any campaign.
For more information on Mr. Gonzales please visit valcards.com