Why Personalization Matters in Direct Mail

Many times, companies shy away from complex personalization because they are worried about getting it wrong. Don’t let your fear stop you. Check out these stats from an InfoTrends 2016 study.

personasBefore we really get started, let’s define what personalization in direct mail is. It’s more than just putting the name and address on the piece.

In 2016, even just adding “Dear name” or just a name is no longer the best way to personalize your direct mail. Don’t get me wrong, you still need to have the name, but you can get so much more creative than that. So don’t just stop there, get more personal with offers, images, landing pages and more. Here are three reasons to get personal:

1. Recipients Like It

With all the technology out now, there’s no reason why you can’t personalize your direct mail, so just do it. Recipients have stated in multiple studies that they pay more attention to mail pieces that are personalized. It makes them feel special.

2. Better Targeting

With personalization, you are better able to target your message to each person. Using the information you have collected in your data base, you can create custom offers that appeal to the right people based on purchase history.

3. Better Response

Since your recipients like it and you can better target them, you are going to get a better response rate with personalization.

Many times companies shy away from complex personalization because they are worried about getting it wrong. Don’t let your fear stop you. Check out these stats from an InfoTrends 2016 study.

Survey Question: Does the customization or personalization of a direct mail piece make you more likely to open/read it? 29.2 percent said “Yes, Much more likely” and 55 percent said “Yes, a little more likely.” With numbers like that, you need to be personalizing.

Personalization in 2016 isn’t hard. There’s great software out there to help control the variable data and ensure that the correct information is on each piece. The key component is what you have in your data base. The more information you have, the better the personalization will be.

Top 3 Ways to Personalize Direct Mail

1. Images: The visual component of your direct mail sets the mood and draws the recipient into your message. Getting the images that will appeal most to each person is very important.

2. Offer: Using the data you have about each person to tailor the offer to their needs is very powerful. The right offer will get the response, the wrong one will not.

3. Copy: The copy is the obvious personalization to the recipient. It uses their name and other information from your data. Use the copy wisely to draw interest. Even though they like personalization, too much copy is a problem and they will not read it.

Are you convinced that personalization is the key to better ROI? I am. If you want to start smaller to take some of the fear out of it, you can do that. Just make sure you don’t get stuck in the mode of just using a name and calling that personalization. Build up your personalization with each mailing by incorporating more data and more complex variables. This gradual build up will give you the confidence to keep getting more personal. What ways have you used personalization?

Author: Summer Gould

A blog about Direct Mail Marketing, tips, tricks and what not to do.Summer Gould is President of Eye/Comm Inc. Summer has spent her 27 year career helping clients achieve better marketing results. She has served as a panel speaker for the Association of Marketing Service Providers conferences. She is active in several industry organizations and she is a board member for Printing Industries Association San Diego, as well as a board member for Mailing Systems Management Association of San Diego. You can find her at Eye/Comm Inc’s website: eyecomm.org, email: summer.gould@eyecomm.org, on LinkedIn, or on Twitter @sumgould.

6 thoughts on “Why Personalization Matters in Direct Mail”

  1. Excellent advice. Interestingly written. Brief and to the point. And important in today’s fast-paced more insulated world. Thanks.

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