Direct to the door – The marketing benefits of addressed mail

Andrew Gasper - Head of New Business, Ovato

Opening your email can be a daunting prospect at the moment.

From being on the lookout for phishing and scam emails, to sifting your way through an avalanche of marketing emails to find the stuff that actually matters to you, it can be easy to simply look at the unread emails growing and throw your phone down in exasperation.

We’re being marketed to 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, but not all marketing channels are created equal. That’s why it’s important for your brand to stand out from the crowd and offer something authentic and memorable.

That’s where addressed mail marketing comes in. We’ll explore why it’s the channel your brand needs to consider when it comes to reaching customers in ways that matter.

Changing the channel

“Mail’s Role in The Digital Age”, a piece of research conducted by Accenture on behalf of Australia Post, reveals much about why addressed mail is such a marketing difference maker.

According to the research, mail is more likely to gain someone’s attention, more likely to be read, and is effective at building brand trust with recipients. It also offers a variety of short-term benefits compared to digital channels, including driving a response from a recipient, and being particularly effective in encouraging people to an online offer or to make a purchase.

An astonishing 81 per cent of people immediately open and read addressed mail marketing. 74 per cent give addressed mail their complete attention when reading it, 62 per cent read every addressed piece of mail they receive, and 54 always remember the information inside.

The impact of addressed mail is further enhanced because mail holds an important place in the household. How many of us have a particular place, say the kitchen bench or an entryway table, where we keep mail easy to hand? With the whole family able to refer to it when needed, mail has a prominent place in our lives that cannot be beaten.

Better at building brands

When it’s compared to email, mail is also considered more trustworthy and more credible by many.
Why is that? People believe that if a brand is going to go to the trouble of designing, printing and sending mail, then they matter to you. It also helps the material to feel more legitimate to the receiver.

A big part of this is because receiving mail creates a greater emotional connection. Receiving something in the mail makes people feel more valued compared to the email (39 per cent to 30 per cent), more important (38 per cent compared to 29 per cent) and shows them that the sender considers the information to be serious (52 per cent to 32 per cent).

Brands looking to build trust and stronger relationships with customers (so, every brand) can use mail to build goodwill through a marketing channel that is considered legitimate and personal.

Impressing digital natives

At first glance, you’d assume that people who grew up surrounded by Facebook, email, smartphones and the Internet might not be the best target for addressed mail marketing. But millennials hold great faith in mail.
According to the Aus Post research, 56 per cent of 18-34 year old’s trust the mail they receive, 46 per cent of them have made a direct purchase as a result receiving mail and an impressive 62 per cent of them feel important when they receive mail.

The numbers don’t lie. Despite the assumption that digital natives would find mail less appealing, it appears that the opposite is true. Mail shows customers within the Millennial cohort that they matter, and brands that use mail value their business by contacting them through a channel that encourages trust and helps potential customers feel valued and special.

Reach more people

Addressed mail marketing has impressive reach throughout this sunburnt land of ours.

Mail reaches 24.1 million Australians through their letterbox, which is a truly impressive number of individuals. What’s more, addressed mail can reach the 3.1 million Australians who don’t have access to email.

While our inboxes are filled to the brim with marketing emails, letterboxes are less cluttered than ever. Paper notices like bills and bank statements have gone digital and moved online, clearing out space and ensuring that the letterbox is open for business.

And addressed mail is especially suited for cutting through other advertising material in the letterbox. A letterbox might have a “No Junk Mail” sticker on it, or otherwise have random catalogues and other paper in there. Direct mail bypasses the possible clutter because people filter for specifically addressed mail.

Stats don’t lie

Mail is the ideal complementary marketing channel that proves your bona fides to customers. It reaches a massive proportion of the population, and will help your brand cut through the marketing static and drive customers to purchasing decisions.