Within the last ten years industry commentators stated that Direct Mail was dead, in fact, print was finished as a direct marketing media. Email was the new king, it was trackable, and importantly it was relatively cheap!

Is Email Still Effective?

Signing up to an email list is as easy as a click of a button, so little wonder that over 70%* of consumers feel that they are bombarded with too many emails. This has led to a reduction in the effectiveness of email communications; recipients are becoming blind to individual emails. Ignoring and deleting pages of brand emails is fast becoming the norm. ┬áTo put this in perspective emails have roughly just 2 seconds to make an impact on a customer. With 74 trillion emails sent each year, it’s not surprising that this is the case.

Is Direct Mail The Way Forward?

Enter Direct Mail, by blending stunning creative, unique mailer designs, and personalisation brands can land your business directly onto customer’s doormats. Recipients on average keep and interact with a mailer for around 17 days (on average), this generates a 75% recall rate. All this means that they’re more likely to act on a call to actions and become a live customer.

On the face of it, sending out an emailer is a more cost-effective medium to reach customers. This assertion would be correct; it’s important not to move away from email marketing. This tool should be a key part of your strategy. At Gecko we fully champion the use of intelligent Direct Marketing. By creating a data-led approach and analysing customers, it’s possible to develop an integrated strategy that maximises the strengths of both channels to engage customers throughout their customer journeys. Strategies will vary depending on the industry and segment in which a business operates in, there’s no one size fits all approach.

When to use Email or Direct Mail?

As referenced, there are times to use each tool, for example, bills and account statements are better sent as Direct Mail, as is information on loyalty rewards, welcome packs, and catalogues. While email is perfect for news and updates, as well as sharing information on related products.

There are many complex reasons to why customers feel certain types of communications suit specific mediums. Email is felt to be informal, informative but throwaway while Direct Mail is percieved as being formal, important, considered and also personal.

What have we learned about Direct Mail and Email?

No one platform is dead. Indeed Direct Mail is a more engaging and dynamic medium than it has ever been. Engaging with industry experts, such as Gecko, can help brands develop a smart strategy which enables the use of both Direct Mail and email to complement one another to achieve goals. This will drive cost-effective communications with customers and also impact the bottom line. This intertwining of both mediums will help brands create a lasting impression which can generate further insight into the customer to allow further refined targeting.

There’s no denying that it’s a complex process to get it right, the good news is that we love solving complex problems here at Gecko. This is why we are the UK’s leading Direct Marketing agency, creating market-leading marketing automation technologies to make a difference to our clients.


*Royal Mail Marketreach, Mail and Digital Part 1