I am among the 85% of people, according to Direct Marketing News, who sort through and read selected pieces of mail every day. I don’t know about you, but I’ve noticed a significant increase in the number of credit card direct mail offers I’ve received lately. No two direct mail packages are alike and I look forward to seeing which pieces will get my attention. Big envelope, small envelope, business envelope; large single window, pistol window; faux card, heavy insert. Credit card direct marketers must be creative to stand out in the mailbox and grab attention of prospective applicants.
So, has the number of credit card direct mail packages recently increased, or is it just my imagination? According to Comperemedia, yes, credit card direct mail volumes increased by 16.12% in Q1 2016 compared to Q1 2015. More than 1.52 billion credit card offers mailed during the first quarter of this year. The top five users of direct mail for credit cards were American Express, Capital One, Chase, Citibank and Discover.
Credit card direct marketers have done their homework and targeted demographic groups identified as most likely to apply for a new credit card during Q1 2016. This demographic is made up of young professional millennials who are under age 34, college graduates, married, employed full time and have income over $50K.
Credit card direct mail campaigns that successfully market to this group highlight what is important to them by using convenience, time savings, money savings and earnings to differentiate their offers. Digital response opportunities are predominant in these campaigns. Comperemedia identifies the following opportunities when marketing to young professional millennials:
- Use direct mail to position products and services that resonate, such as establishing credit and the value of a strong credit score, or the dos and don’ts of a healthy financial future.
- With a growing number of millennial women earning more money and staying single longer, messaging should revolve around how financial knowledge leads to financial control and how this can lead to achieving one’s personal goals.
- Millennial men are more likely to do a lot of research before deciding on their primary financial institution and prefer to have all their accounts with a single institution. Credit card companies can leverage this by offering benefits such as discounted fees or loyalty points to consumers who open multiple accounts with them.
Another common trend is rewards programs, with 68.6% of all credit card direct mail campaigns in Q1 2016 including a rewards program. The most popular options for young professional millennials were those offering cashback (26%), points (21%), miles (6%) and rebates (1%).
While there are many offers that appeal to young professional millennials, direct mail is one of the best channels to reach them. Consider the following recommendations to increase your credit card response rates:
- Textured envelope paper stock, a heavy stock insert, or plastic card creates a unique feel and heightens interest for the potential credit card applicant.
- Utilize full-color, variable-data digital printing technology to create personalized, highly-targeted, direct marketing messages. The great advantage of digital technology is that you can highlight and vary the specific benefits of your credit card offers for men and women, all in one mailstream.
- With 97% of applicants applying for a credit card online, employ cross-channel marketing and direct a potential applicant to your website. Plan ahead to ensure the website is mobile-friendly and up-to-date.
Need help marketing to young professional millennials and making your credit card direct mail offers stand out in the mailbox? Our direct mail creative experts can help. Contact us today.
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