Marketing postcards, like other direct mail pieces, offer something unique in the digital age: a way for your B2C audience to physically engage with your communications.
Unlike the daily bombardment of digital advertising, marketing postcards capture and hold a recipient's attention right at the mailbox, giving them something to hold in their hands and post on the fridge. They’re a persistent reminder to act in a world where most messages are fleeting and forgettable.
When all the ingredients of a great postcard campaign are present (a highly-target mailing list, personalization, and a compelling offer), that attention isn’t lost. Coupons make their way into wallets and event reminders get posted in the home –– coveted spaces that keep brands top-of-mind in a way other channels simply can’t match.
Whether this is your first time planning a postcard campaign, or you’re interested in informing your efforts with data and best practices, read on for a quick stats and tips of how well postcards are working and where they fit best in your marketing mix.
Making the case for direct mail postcards
If you’re considering a postcard campaign as part of your multi-channel campaign, but not sure if you can justify the investment required to design, print, and mail postcards, consider a few statistics:
- Direct mail response rates are actually growing. According to the 2018 ANA/DMA Response Rate Report, direct mail response rates were 9% to a house list and 5% to a prospect list. By comparison, the 2017 report showed a response rate of 5.1% to a house list and 2.9% to a prospect list. Going back even further, the average between 2003 and 2015 was 3.6% to a house list and 1.6% to a prospect list. Taken together, since 2015, customer response rates for direct mail have increased 37% and prospect response rates have more than doubled with a shocking 190% increase. What accounts for the increase? A few things are likely happening: Marketers are getting smarter about sending mail to people who appreciate receiving it; data has enabled better-tailored offers, and cheaper digital printing means more volume for less money.
- Most young people report spending time consuming mail and over half prefer scanning it over email for useful information. ANA/DMA’s 2017 and 2018 research finds that more than 3 in 4 millennials (84%) take the time to look through their mail. Similarly, 64% would rather scan for useful information over email––believing it to be a more viable and reliable source of communication from brands.
- Direct mail still outperforms any digital direct marketing channel for response rate. The 2018 ANA/DMA Response Rate Report pegged direct mail response rates at 5 to 9 times greater than that of email, paid search, or social media.
Postcards are the most likely marketing mail pieces to be read by recipients.
Some slightly older AMA/DMA research parsed the differences between various types of direct mail pieces and found that over half (52.5%) of consumers reported that they’d read a postcard versus less than a third who said they’d open a letter-sized envelope.
Survey respondents report responding to relevant, compelling postcards more than letter-sized envelopes. The same AMA/DMA report that looked at response rates for different types of direct mail pieces found that 23.4% of consumers will respond to postcards that are relevant and of interest to them, compared to 7.9% for letter-sized envelopes.
To learn more about how OneTouchPoint can help take your national, regional, and local direct mail and marketing efforts to the next level, sign up for a personal consultation with one of our mailing experts.