Did you know that direct mails have a response rate of 5% compared to less than 1% for email, paid search, online display and social media?

The cause of such a heavy response is simple — direct mails are more personalized and tangible. Hence, engage more people.

Study shows that 73% of Americans like to receive direct mails over digital advertisements.

With this stat in mind, including direct mail marketing in your marketing technique to boost your ROI is an excellent choice. Here’s how you can leverage direct mail marketing for better results.

Not Just Mailing List, Use Validated Data

Most businesses treat direct mailing lists as a secondary option and send their mailpieces to as many prospects as they can reach based on area. This approach is no-good. It results in heavy misspending and brings no significant results.

The best way is to create a highly targeted mailing list based on your buyer persona and market research. Once you’ve completed your mailing list, it’s highly effective to get your mailing list verified with address verification software. It helps in standardizing, parsing, and validating your data.

This way, you reduce your bounce rate, number of lost mailpieces, and the amount you might spend on the duplicate direct mails. The uttermost benefit is that your tracking results will be quite accurate.

Work the Right Direct Mail

Sending your prospects merely a postcard or catalog and expecting them to be responsive is futile. They may engage with your mailpiece, but it’s doubtful that they will respond to a generic direct mail, which by the way, they might also be receiving from ten other companies.

Hence, make sure that your mailpiece is unique, delivering value, and the next step you want them to take from there (your CTA) is crystal clear and easy to follow. The idea is to send the right offer to the right audience with just the right design and copy.

It’s necessary to note that most designers, while creating their mailpieces, get caught up in their creativity, and eventually, end up adding wonderful, but not useful, images in the piece of mail.

Unless each part of direct mail is delivering value, don’t bother adding it. It’ll do nothing but add up to the cost of your direct mail. Hence, it is crucial to understand first how much direct mail costs before you launch your direct campaign.

Code Allotment

You might have designed your mailpiece, but it’s not yet ready. Because your aim is not just to launch your direct mail campaign but measure the results. Hence, allot a code to each of your direct mail campaigns.

The code should reflect the time (year or month) when you have launched the campaign, the mailing list, to whom you’ve mailed this campaign, and the offer you made in that promotion.

It later helps evaluate the results of your direct mail campaigns and determine which of your designs and offers are working the best and which ones are just falling flat. Furthermore, it also helps you find out your most engaging mailing list. And from which one of them is coming most of your revenue generation.

Launch and Test

Before you launch your direct mail campaign to all of your prospects, it’s always suggested to test your mailing list.

You cannot predict your prospects’ response. It’s just something highly unlikely unless you have detailed knowledge of each of your potential and existing customers in your database, which is again implausible.

Hence, you should go with testing your direct mail campaign by launching it for 10% of your mailing list — it helps you find out the quality of your mailing list. Because experts say, your direct mail response rate should never be less than 2%.

If such a thing is happening, you might want to reconsider a few things, for example, the value your offer is delivering, the strength of your copy, and of course, the quality of your mailing list. A 6-7% response rate or more is often considered excellent.

Add Personalization

Despite what your marketing method is, personalization is no more a choice. It’s a necessity.

Most businesses overlook this fact and end up wasting much of their resources and money on generic direct mail campaigns.

If you can’t afford to personalize each of your mailpieces – addressing all of your prospects by their first name – consider using “I,” “You,” and the contractions like “isn’t, don’t, and others.”

Additionally, ensure to add your best benefits in the first few sentences of your direct mail message. Because no matter how engaging your direct mail is, it can be overlooked, as people are busy. Your job is to make sure that your maximum mailpieces get read.

Last but not least is your call-to-action. It must be apparent and easy-to-follow. This way, the chances of a higher response rate increase even more. You can also add a sense of urgency, if applicable.

Use Triggered Response

Triggered based direct mails can increase your revenue up to four times, as they tend to engage your prospects greatly, and with direct mails already getting a great response rate, it can add to your overall returns.

To leverage this technique, you’d need to use an integrated marketing approach to fetch your customers’ collected data and send them offline responses based on their actions.

You can also send the thank-you, welcome, birthday, and festival mailpieces using it. For example, if you’re a health insurance company, you can send triggered direct mails wishing birthday to your prospects, slipping a note about your after-retirement insurance plans with it.

Retarget and Convert

Retargeting can increase your conversion rate by around 150%. That’s why it’s always recommended never to let go of the prospects and customers showing even a little interest in your product or services.

By tracking your customers’ and prospects’ responses through direct mails, your next step should be following up with them through various means. For example, you can follow up with them using display ads on their web activity, through social media ads reminding them of the products they were checking, or by personalized emails.

You can also use direct mails to follow up with your potential and existing customers and re-introduce the product or services they showed interest in via last direct mail. Another technique is showing your customers their buying history of the year and gaining more repeat business.


Gone are the days when direct mail marketing was just a traditional way to send your prospects Christmas cards. Using the tactics mentioned above and deliberately trying to bond with your audience instead of being salesy, you can considerably increase your revenue generation.