Pump Up the Volume: Hottest Direct Mail Verticals

Now that spring has officially arrived there is a sense of energy in the air. Birds are chirping, kids are playing outside and the mercury is slowing rising. But the weather isn’t the only thing warming up; volumes for certain direct mail verticals are rising as well. Today we wanted to look at which industries are increasing their mail volumes, and what is leading to the success of their campaigns.

From our perspective, the insurance and financial services industries are still at the top in terms of volume. However, the multiple system operators (MSO) space is the fastest growing and coming on strong. The natural question becomes: why?

To start, it may be a bit misleading to term the insurance and financial service verticals as “hot.” Rather, they are running at consistently high volumes because they know direct mail works and remain committed to it. The MSO space is “hot” both in volume and in how they are transforming the way direct mail is used. MSOs are finding that innovative formats and the application of digital technology to allow deeper/better segmentation are driving greater return on marketing investment (ROMI).

Our experience coincides closely with the recent “Media Usage Survey” found in the March issue of Target Marketing magazine.  The study found more marketers are increasing acquisition budgets compared to retention budgets. In other words, they are shifting to offense instead of playing defense. This makes sense, as direct mail has always been one of the most effective customer acquisition channels available.

You Always Need to be Right

While high mail volumes are always a welcome sight, it’s not necessarily about sending more mail. It’s a matter of finding the harmony between the creative, offer and data to send the right piece, to the right person, with the right offer, at the right time. Based on conversations we’ve had with our customers, the following factors are driving the most success:

  • A focus on digital print
  • Using formats with a tactile feel such as cards inserts and textured outer envelopes
  • Increased segmentation
  • Robust testing strategies to find the next control

We’ve seen clients step up volumes on proven packages with great results. However, it’s important to be ready when that package fatigues. This requires having a stable of champion packages to rotate so the offer and messaging stays fresh and resonates with recipients.

Please let me know if you’d like to learn more about incorporating the tips above into your next direct mail campaign, or how our Creative Services team can build out a series of champion packages for you.

Now get outside and enjoy spring!

Blog Author

Mike Ertel
Executive Vice President of Sales and Marketing. Graduate of the University of Wisconsin – Stout. Bringing the “it’s the people that make us great” philosophy to IWCO Direct since 2002. Loves Father’s Day, spending time with family and cheering for the Green Bay Packers.

View More Posts by Mike

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