Want to make an impact with your next direct mail campaign? Personalization should be a strong consideration. Need proof? The statistics speak for themselves: marketing campaigns that include personalization average an increased conversion of 63%. Additionally, 78% of consumers report personally relevant content increases their purchase intent for a brand’s product or service.
Despite these benefits, challenges remain in fully utilizing personalization in marketing. According to a 2017 study, most marketing professionals (55%) feel the industry doesn’t get personalization right and nearly half (46%) give their company’s personalization efforts a “C” or below.
My belief? Most marketers are merely scratching the surface of what’s possible with personalization, focusing mainly on digital marketing as what they believe to be their only “real” possibility of getting ROI and tracking results. In reality, adding personalized direct mail to your campaign could provide the brand impact and ROI boost your marketing efforts need.
Considering that direct mail averages a response rate is 5.1% (compared to .6% email, .6% paid search, .2% online display, .4% social media), the evidence is difficult to refute.
But, where does a marketer looking into the possibilities of personalized direct mail get started? Aren’t small print runs the only option?
Thankfully, not in today’s world. High-speed production inkjet technology makes the dream of combining the value of personalization with the tangibility of direct mail a reality.
To drive deeper into the possibilities of direct mail, we spoke to Karen Weil, Director of Procurement at IWCO Direct—a direct marketing services company focused on creating and printing direct mail campaigns that generate a response for many of the top corporations in the United States.
At IWCO Direct, helping customers identify the right solution starts with working with the clients to help them develop a strategic direct mail campaign with compelling creative. A strategy they commonly use is the creation of what they call a package—a direct mail piece with the potential to contain a vast array of items including forms, brochures, inserts and/or promotional cards wrapped in a self-mailing package. The items are selected based on the goals of the client, and often contain items that showcase personalization.
“The success created for clients is based on effectively leveraging each of their marketing channels at the right time with the right offer to the right person,” said Weil.
That strategic planning of IWCO Direct’s marketing and creative teams often leads to using a combination of printing technologies to reach the right audience and drive response. A vast array of techniques and printing technologies are often used—including shaped envelopes, soft touch coatings, variable imaging and multicomponent packages—to get their clients’ offers and services noticed.
“IWCO Direct continually tests offers, whether it’s creative and targeting or segmentation and analysis, in an organized and strategic way to maintain that success.”
If you want major impact, including personalized direct mail as part of your omni-channel campaign is a must. Consider this: according to a recent study, more than half of consumers are “somewhat likely to switch brands” if a company they buy from doesn’t personalize communications to them. When it comes to personalization, the printing method IWCO Direct relies on is high-speed production inkjet. This print technology, when treated inkjet paper is used, has made huge strides in print quality in recent years and makes personalization at large quantities in print a reality.
“Inkjet technology and the use for personalized messaging meets the growing need for data-driven marketing campaigns. The treated inkjet paper that we use on a regular basis allows us to maintain consistency and efficiency,” said Weil. “The main benefit of inkjet technology for direct mail is the ability to provide true one-to-one marketing through variable and dynamic content and optimizing postal discounts,” explains Weil, “variable data printing provides the platform that enables our clients to create a highly targeted personalized communication.”
As with any printing process, the right paper can make or break the job. So where does a marketer that’s new to high-speed production inkjet start?
If you’re lucky enough to work with a company like IWCO Direct, they’ll guide you through the process. “Many clients understand the importance of selecting the right paper, but we work to educate them all the time,” said Weil. “In addition to IWCO Direct’s educational blog, we offer client training on site and even offer opportunities to tour paper mill facilities with our core suppliers. So we are always trying to continually educate our clients.”
Another thing that sets IWCO Direct apart is their use of analytics post-campaign to measure return on marketing investment (ROMI) and look closely at what the client is getting based on their investment in marketing and creative. Although IWCO Direct’s capabilities might not be within reach for everyone, the personalization aspects of high-speed production inkjet can help marketers better measure and test various offers to many personas—and therefore measure the effectiveness of their campaigns.
Ready to include personalized direct mail as part of your next omni-channel campaign? Order our Printing Papers Inkjet printed sample to get the paper selection process started.
Need to research inkjet more to find if this method is right for you? Discover a vast array of information on how to create a printed piece that exceeds expectations by signing up for a complimentary subscription to our Paper Matters magazine today!