“Direct Mail is dead!”
How many times have we heard “Direct mail is dead!” shouted over the proverbial rooftops of the Internet marketing world?
Perhaps it’s the same people who are proclaiming that cold calling is dead?
The fact is, direct mail is alive and well. Statistics like that of DMA’s (Direct Marketing Association) found a 4.4% response rate for direct mail versus an average of 0.12% for email.
Of course, email is virtually free – and direct mail can be expensive. So of course those numbers don’t exist in a vacuum – ROI must also be taken into account.
But I won’t be pitting email and direct mail against each other in this post. Luckily, there’s room for both heroes in this town.
Instead, I’m going to talk about a technique referred to as “remarketing” (with a twist of course). But first, for the less initiated – what is remarketing?
Remarketing – “those ads that follow you around.”
Remarketing via display ads (or retargeting) is best described as “those ads follow you around the web.”
For instance, view a product on Amazon without purchasing, and the next time you log on to Facebook, CNN or another website with an ad-network partnership, you’re very likely to see an ad for that product.
If you’re worried about the creep factor of Google tracking your customer’s every move, don’t be. According to a post at eMarketer, 89% of consumers surveyed had a neutral or positive reaction to remarketing ads.
You’re marketing to people who have already expressed an interest in your product or service. There’s no unqualified eyeballs seeing your offer. In many cases they just need two or three extra exposures before they’re willing to invest.
Remarketing via Email – “those emails that follow you around…”
Ok, so email remarketing is somewhat similar to remarketing via display. Of course, the difference is that your customers or prospects receive emails instead of (or as well as) seeing ads online.
How email remarketing works:
You visit your favorite hipster online clothing store and see a new t-shirt you’d love to have. It’s a bargain at $175 so you decide you must have it!
You enter your details in the shopping cart and are just about to click CHECKOUT when the doorbell rings! One hour, 4 cups of tea and some stimulating conversation later and your Hipster t-shirt is all but forgotten.
Here’s where email remarketing comes in.
Because you abandoned your shopping cart mid-purchase – that tells Hipster T-Shirt Company that you are an engaged prospect (and you are!). What happens next?
Well, you get an email another hour later asking if anything went wrong with your purchase, and perhaps you’d like 5% off your order to nudge you into buying now.
You gladly accept and complete your purchase. Another sale saved by remarketing!
But what if you hadn’t seen that email?
After all, a 2013 study by Experian Marketing Services found that abandoned cart remarketing emails achieve an average of 40.3% open rate. That’s quite high, but it still means that almost 60% of those remarketing emails won’t get opened.
Which brings me to the topic of today’s post:
Saving Lost Conversions with Direct Mail Remarketing
Hmmm… probably should have saved the Mighty Mouse meme for this section.
So, just as with display ads and email, the same principle of remarketing can be used with direct mail.
But instead of an either/or scenario, use direct mail in combination with your email and display remarketing.
When a lead abandons their shopping cart, send the email out 30 minutes later. If that doesn’t immediately convert to sales, send out a postcard or note inviting the lead back to complete their order (with an enticing discount if necessary).
36x Higher Response Rate than Email
Although there’s very little data on retargeting via direct mail, consider that direct mail enjoys a 36x higher response rate than email (according to Direct Marketing Association). With those numbers, don’t you think it’s worth a test?
Of course, to send postcards and handwritten letters you’ll need the mailing addresses of these people who drop out of the sales funnel. If they are registered users, you’ll most likely have that data.
Consider this: 3 out of 4 people who abandon shopping carts say they plan on returning to the website to make a purchase (according to data from SeeWhy). 8% of them actually do. That means 67% of abandoners should be marketed (and remarketed) to consistently until they do buy.
The more channels you use to remarket to (while maintaining a good ROI), the better.
Email, Facebook, Display and Direct Mail should all be on your testing calendar.
If you’re interested in setting up a handwritten, direct mail remarketing campaign for your business, get in touch with one of our friendly account executives today and we’ll be happy to discuss your options.