Even in today’s digitally thriving economy, direct mail still maintains its status as one of the biggest ROI-boosting marketing methods. However, if you want to see any real benefit from your campaigns, you’ll first need to understand your options for using direct mail demographics effectively.
Targeting direct mail demographics takes more than just selecting age groups and ZIP codes. For your next campaign, consider these 4 best practices before you head to the post office:
1. Define habits first, demographics second.
There’s a difference between demographics and habits, and your customers’ habits should always be considered first. Understanding your ideal target’s buying preferences and pain points can help you better tailor your campaign’s purpose. Your direct mail demographics are then better positioned to support your direct mail goals.
People want to know the companies they do business with understand their unique needs, which is why generic mailbox campaigns won’t cut the junk mail clutter.
2. Don’t choose popular direct mail demographics simply because they’re popular.
Studies have shown that millennials (ages 18-34) and older generations (ages 65+) are most responsive to opening and acting on direct mail. But just because these demographics have been successful for other campaigns doesn’t mean you will receive the same response.
Recipients in the 18-34 age group tend to prefer direct mail over other forms of advertising, while people aged 65 or older lean toward direct mail because of a lack of adoption of digital media. But these aren’t your only options for segmenting by demographics. Depending on what you offer, age may have nothing to do with your ROI. Make sure you consider all your options, such as ZIP code, gender, family size, and income levels, before you send your campaign.
3. Know the pros and cons of investing in a mailing list before you purchase it.
Mailing lists can be a viable option for businesses who want new leads in specific demographics but don’t have the time to collect them organically. But that doesn’t mean that a paid list will always give you the results you expect. Before you pay good money for your direct mail demographics, you need to understand exactly what you’re buying:
- You get a list of names and addresses targeted by demographics for your direct mail campaign
- Someone else has done the research for you
- You can easily import most lists into your CRM or other databases
- There are a variety of service providers who can supply you with lead lists
- List data may not be current
- You know nearly nothing about the habits of the people you’re mailing to
- Lead lists can be expensive, costing upwards of $100 or more per 1000 leads
- People may not be as responsive to mail from a company they aren’t familiar with
There are ways to earn new leads without spending money on a pre-generated list. Consider sending a direct mail campaign to your existing customers in your database, or determine if an EDDM campaign will help you better achieve your goals.
4. Establish a way to measure your campaign through demographic response
If you are targeting one specific demographic with your direct mail campaign, you’re already positioned to measure how well that particular target engaged with your brand. However, if you are mailing to an audience that covers a variety of demographics, it helps to get creative in how you measure their response.
For example, if you are mailing to an audience in a variety of age groups, you might present a different call-to-action or offer code to each age category. Millennials might be prompted to redeem an offer online via a landing page targeted for consumers in that age range. This can help you determine which age demographic gives you the most ROI so you can better tailor future direct mail campaigns.
Direct mail isn’t always the best option for every campaign, even when you put the above best practices to good use. Understanding direct mail demographics options to target your campaign is only one of many areas you need to consider.
Talk to us at Las Vegas Color Graphics today and let our experts help you determine the best way to execute your direct mail campaign.