Direct Mail1According to an article in the most recent issue of Target Marketing magazine, nearly 12% of direct marketers say they’re doing to decrease direct mail spend in 2013. That’s the largest percentage decrease for any direct marketing method.

The study asked direct marketers whether they would increase spend, decrease spend, or spend the same for 16 different direct marketing mediums. A relatively surprising 11.7% of direct marketers surveyed said they were going to decrease direct mail spend in the next year.

This was the highest percentage of any medium for the ‘decrease’ question. By way of comparison, for example, only 2.3% of direct marketers said they would decrease affiliate marketing spend and only 2.3% said they would decrease spend designed to spur social media engagement.

So…that’s not good for direct mail firms…but there was some good news.

The Good

The study also found that 28% of direct marketers said they will increase spend on direct mail. That’s much better than other methods like DR TV–only 5.1% of direct marketers said they would increase spend on DR TV–and mobile SMS marketing–where only 16% of marketers said they would increase spend.

What Does All This Mean for Direct Mail Firms?

Some marketers are abandoning the channel wholesale (more than other channels) and other marketers say they’re going to increase spend  on direct mail (more rapidly than other channels).

This means there are certain industries, and companies that are finding value in direct mail.

Direct mail firms must rely on data to show them the industries they should pursue.

How Does a Direct Mail Firm Differentiate Itself?

The bottom line is this: as a direct mail firm, you have to do something that will make you different from your competitors AND from other advertising channels.

One of the best methods of differentiation is call tracking.

Direct mail firms that provide call tracking numbers for each mailing they produce increase revenue, retain clients longer, and have better customer satisfaction.


Because they’re able to provide their clients with concrete data that PROVES mailers produce phone calls. Their clients can see, clearly and quickly, how many phone calls mailers are producing.

If you were a client, wouldn’t you want the data? Think about it! If you were choosing between two direct mail firms–one of which could tell you how many phone calls their mailers were generating, and one that couldn’t–which would you choose?

Yep. Me too.