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3 Ways Technology Helps You Make Money With Direct Mail Marketing How to use data for happier customers and better conversion rates.

By James Jorner Edited by Lisa Lombardi

entrepreneur daily

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Sergio Delle Vedove | Getty Images

The average person is exposed to an estimated 6,000 to 10,000 advertisements per day. So it's not surprising that we are almost 'immune' to their charm.

Don't get me wrong — this doesn't mean they're not effective or they don't have their place in marketing. In fact, marketers have been able to experience a 96 percent increase in clicks with an active Facebook ad campaign.

However, there is another mode of marketing that might be even more effective. Direct mail marketing has been used for years, long before advertising online was a thing.

Although direct mail marketing might seem to be an archaic form of marketing, it does have its perks now that technology is here to change the rules of the game.

Technology has revolutionized everything we do including how we market our offers. Several years ago when things were pretty much all manually driven, there wasn't an efficient way of collecting and storing data.

Now, technology helps us work faster and smarter and provides us with more accurate data about our potential clients. And obviously, this leads to better conversion rates and happier customers. Technology has sharpened the direct mail marketing process to provide great results.

What makes direct mail so appealing?

Direct mail marketing is a form of marketing where advertisements and other promotional materials are physically delivered to your mailbox.

While some say direct mail is dead, research has proven that direct mail response rates are a lot higher than all other forms of advertising combined — in fact, direct mail's response rates have been getting better year after year as digital becomes more widely adopted.

Its advantages over the digital system stem from the long-standing accuracy of its data (which dates back decades) and the very real, tangible impression businesses can make on consumers by sending them a quality mail piece. Its disadvantages are rooted in the startup time it takes to move a campaign from conception to completion, along with the higher price that comes along with the logistics and manpower needed to make that tangible impression. Technology, however, has made direct mail easier to execute and more affordable than ever.

So what does technology have to do with direct mail marketing?

It's simple — with the presence of technology, direct mail marketing has gone digital. This makes direct marketing more accurate, reliable, and effective. Here are three ways technology has transformed direct mail marketing.

Related: 3 Secrets to Adding Direct Mail to Your Online Sales Funnel

1. Technology lets you digitize the direct mail marketing process

When done correctly and with the right technological integrations, direct mail marketing can create a more memorable experience for your ideal customer with your business. And some businesses are already taking advantage of that.

A good example that explains the process of digitizing the whole marketing process is PostcardMania, a $60 million marketing firm that specializes in direct mail. Just recently, PostcardMania integrated with Zapier and hundreds of other CRMs, giving marketers a chance to take data from their CRM or website and send targeted postcards to their marketing pipeline based on specific triggers like dates or seasons.

Some common trigger-based setups include: sending postcards to shoppers that abandon their carts without purchasing; sending welcome postcards to new online subscribers with special discounts to encourage conversions; and reconnecting with buyers for upsell opportunities.

This integration allows business owners to automatically send direct mail in any quantity, thereby putting an end to what normally would have been a very lengthy setup.

2. You can integrate direct mail into your marketing campaign

Businesses who use direct mail marketing can now utilize digital technology to optimize their campaigns. Through using personalized URLs, QR codes, or even SMS codes, they can get their potential clients to connect with them online and increase response rates. These integrations make the tracking of leads and revenue a very easy process compared to what it was before.

Related: The 3 Attributes of Every Successful Marketing Campaign

3. It delivers accurate data about customers for precise targeting

Unlike how it was in the past, where the success of direct mail marketing was all left to chance, businesses can now have access to more accurate data about their target audience before sending them their first mail in their mailbox. This helps increase the efficacy of the direct mail marketing campaign.

What this means is that when it comes to direct mail, you aren't just targeting a profile or an IP address — a targeted list can include first and last names, neighborhoods, even the date an insurance policy runs out. Businesses can leverage this data to speak directly to recipients individually on every mail piece. For example, a headline that states, "John, welcome to the neighborhood!" for John Smith and another mail piece that says, "Jane, welcome to the neighborhood!" for Jane Doe. This technology is called variable data and can definitely get the attention of your intended target market.

The future of direct mail

There's no doubt about it — technology has made direct mail marketing more effective. This is good news for a lot of business owners who were at a loss for what to do to get their products and services in front of their target audience.

Related: Going Green With Direct Mail

Through tech, businesses have a higher chance of making every mail they deliver count. With the right kind of tools and strategies in place, businesses will be able to receive real value for their money in direct mail marketing.

James Jorner

Business Development Manager

James Jorner is a digital marketer and social media advocate who aims to help businesses identify, connect, and engage their audience through digital media channels. He's the head of digital at Effective Inbound Marketing.

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