It’s mail time! There are a few bills, some flyers, and a couple seemingly unsolicited postcards advertising a new local business opening up in the neighborhood. How many of those direct mail pieces make it anywhere but the trash can?

Chances are not that many.

Some marketers swear by direct mail and are unwilling to let it go, but we know there are better alternatives to running a successful campaign. Here are 4 ways to avoid direct mail and utilize smarter marketing tactics.

Email Marketing

How often does someone open their inbox? 91% of consumers use email at least once a day, but we all know if there’s a smart phone around it’s probably more like every few minutes. Instead of taking chances with the postal service and mailing out physical pieces, consider email marketing as a great alternative. With no money necessary to spend on postage or the materials needed to create a mail piece, email marketers will be saving money from the get go.

Clearly, email market is not only cost-effective, but mostly everyone uses it as their main source of communication. It’s also a great way to get news out fast for a company.

Social Media Marketing

Want to engage customers in real-time with no cost? Never ignore the power of social media marketing! Not only is it free to set up most profiles, but there are so many potential customers ready to learn more. A whopping 95% of marketers who use social media at least 6 hours per week indicated their social media efforts increased exposure for their businesses.

Direct mail finds consumers where they live, but social media finds consumers where they like to play. Social media marketing will help humanize a brand and make them approachable.

Press Releases

If there’s company news that’s worth sharing, don’t skip the press release! A good press release can receive a lot of exposure that will help a company spread the word about their products, services, and time-sensitive offers. Sharing positive news with customers will help build up a brand.

Online campaigns also make it easier to track progress, which can be very hard to do with direct mail. With press releases and email marketing, businesses will know who is responding to their offers and what works and what doesn’t. Press releases can also be utilized in a variety of ways and will improve a company’s visibility.

Mass Market Ads

Instead of spending a lot of cash on mass mailings, setting up an online ad might have more impact. Certain social media sites offer ad placement for a reasonable price and there’s a chance thousands of people can see them on a daily basis. If a business wants wide-spread exposure, advertising online is certainly the way to do it.

There’s a chance people might throw out mail before even opening, but it’s hard to ignore display ads, especially when the message is seen a few times.

What types of campaigns does your company run in place of direct mail? Has anything worked best for you? Let us know!