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Direct Mail Isn’t Dead: 5 Reasons to Use Direct Mail in 2023


In our digital world, the idea of direct mail marketing—sending consumers advertisements through the postal service—can seem out of date. However, we’re here to make the case for direct mail. A well-done mailer can delight consumers, have more interactivity than a digital ad, and can even be paired with modern technology to make for a really impactful asset in your strategic marketing plan.

Let’s take a closer look at how direct mail really works today and the benefits it can bring.

5 Reasons to Use Direct Mail in 2023

1. Stand Out from the Crowd

There’s no denying, the digital advertising landscape is crowded. When consumers are online, they are surrounded by ads and content vying for their attention. Direct mail offers an opportunity to stand apart and be much more eye-catching. When consumers are physically sorting through their mail, there’s a lot less competition for attention. And when they are assessing whether to keep or pitch a direct mail piece, they are giving it more of their attention than they would a display ad or an email. A study done by Fundera showed that direct mail open rates can reach 90% and that 42% of recipients scan or read the direct mail they receive.

2. Longevity

It’s easy to click the delete button on an email, many times without even opening the message at all. When you send a direct mail piece to consumers, it is much more likely that they will at least scan it, especially if it’s a postcard, and maybe even hang it on their refrigerator as a reminder for later. And the chances of this go up if you include a promo code or some other kind of incentive.

3. The Chance to Delight

Direct mail gives you an opportunity to truly delight potential consumers, which might entice them to try your business for the first time or to return and make another purchase. The tactile nature of direct mail lets you get creative with the printing or enclosures to surprise consumers. You could use a unique paper, employ bright colors, send small relevant gifts like calendars or stickers—the possibilities are endless! Additionally, modern printing techniques give you the opportunity to run small batches of mailers or print personalized messages on each piece. This lets you offer unique promo codes to each customer, reference their purchase history or interests or utilize any other relevant data points you might have in your CRM to make each customer feel unique and special.

4. Targeting and Tracking

A well set up direct mail campaign can (and should) contain audience targeting and performance tracking, just like you would utilize in a digital campaign. You can segment and target your list based on zip code, purchase history and more. You can even set up online-based triggers for sending mailers. For example, you can use a website visit as a trigger for a mailer which could then feature the product the consumer was considering online. To track the performance of your direct mail, include a QR code with a link to a special campaign-specific landing page or a unique promo code.

5. Direct Mail Works

Companies across industries are seeing real ROI from direct mail campaigns. At B&Y, we created a direct mail packet for one of our clients that was sent to consumers who were known to have moved into our client’s market. The result? An over 100% increase in household utilization of their services.

Now, an important caveat is that if you are using a first-party customer list for your direct mail, meaning a list of your current customers, you want to be sure that they have opted in for marketing and mailing outreach, otherwise you risk potentially turning off existing customers. When using third-party data like a mailing list you purchase through a service, you don’t have the same level of control, so make sure you’re working with a reputable partner.

It might be surprising, but direct mail marketing can still be advantageous if used well. Will you give it a try in your 2023 strategy? Want a creative partner to help you execute ideas like this? Let’s start a conversation to see if B&Y is a fit for your needs.