Direct Marketers must determine how their brand remains relevant to regular buyers, instead of just continuing previously successful methods to stimulate interest. In the past, regular mailings of a multi-page catalog with very few changes brought a reasonable response rate. Today, communication devices are changing the landscape of how shoppers connect with marketers and their products. Many marketers have moved to email marketing as a way to keep their brand and products in front of busy consumer buyers. But direct mail remains a very strong influence that should not be discounted.
“Customer behavior is evolving more rapidly than retailer behavior,” says Lou Weiss of The Vitamin Shoppe. “The proliferation of technologies gives consumers the opportunity to change how they interact with retailers. The consumer is getting further away from us everyday. They may not be able to hear us. That’s not a comfortable place for a retail marketer to be.”
It has been said printed direct mail pieces arriving in the mailbox bring greater effectiveness by actually placing a well-designed piece into the hands of the consumer. Marketer printed materials have better odds of being viewed. Consumers are constantly bombarded with emails and have become desensitized and conditioned to eliminate them before even opening them.
The reduced direct mail volume of late means a printed piece has less competition for attention in the daily mail pile. It is not necessary to mail multiple catalog pages, secured by three wafer seals to gain consumer attention. Rather, it is necessary to reach these consumers many times throughout the year, keeping your brand in front of them. Direct mail accomplishes this the way it always did. Finding a less expensive way to communicate through direct mail is something worth considering.
Combining direct mail efforts with the interactivity of the website experience with video, chat, QR codes, promotions, and special discounts are all necessary in this evolving market.