In this post, we continue our end of year review of the biggest trends of 2017. Memjet’s vice president of business development Maureen Brock tells us how direct mail is returning to the marketing mix – and the opportunities this trend is creating for print and mail providers of all sizes.
Marketing communications have undergone a tremendous evolution in recent years.
Today’s consumer now sees thousands of digital ads each day. As these digital messages overwhelm consumers, an interesting trend has emerged: the resurgence of printed direct mail.
This year, research studies proved the important role direct mail plays in successful marketing campaigns. InfoTrends, a division of Keypoint Intelligence, conducted a study titled, “Direct Marketing Production Printing & Value-Added Services: A Strategy for Growth,” and reported that direct mail (e.g., letters, flyers, brochures, and postcards) remains as a key marketing tactic because it creates a level of engagement that leads consumers of all ages to websites or into retail stores where, most importantly, they make purchases.
Achieving a Positive Return on Your Marketing Investment
For direct mail to succeed today as a trusted, “clutter busting,” attention-getting medium it must generate a sense of engagement with the recipient. Therefore, marketers need to focus more attention to the design of their campaigns, including color, size, paper stock, shapes, and even folding techniques.
In addition to these creative design elements, direct mail also needs to be customized with the recipient’s personal information and interests.
Producing Low-Cost, High-Engagement Direct Mail
The good news is that inkjet-powered printing solutions are keeping pace with the demands associated with creating and producing direct mail campaigns that break through the clutter.
Inkjet solutions allow providers to effectively use variable data to customize their mailings and produce short- and long-run customized print jobs without time-consuming and expensive setups.
In addition, the fast print speeds of these inkjet solutions mean that no matter what size of a printer you use, from a benchtop solution all the way up to a press system, you can produce jobs quickly and easily without sacrificing quality.
Inkjet printers are also a cost-effective alternative to toner printers. Providers can deliver color printing at a much lower cost of ownership than toner, saving money on each campaign they produce.
Expanding Creative Possibilities
These inkjet-powered solutions can also expand the range of creative possibilities providers have for enhancing their clients’ brands and increasing reader participation in a direct mail campaign.
To start, these solutions give providers a wide range of color options for creating an engaging and memorable experience for the recipient. Two-color and even full-color envelopes can be easily produced and can even include a full bleed.
Many inkjet solutions also offer duplex printing, so both sides of an envelope can be quickly produced in full color. Duplex printing not only speeds up production time, it also gives marketers the advantage of using both sides of the envelope as part of their campaign.
In addition to color, many marketers now use texture as a way to increase engagement. How a direct mail piece feels in the hands of the recipient creates a type of engagement that can lead to action.
Inkjet solutions support this trend by giving providers the capability to print on an increasing range of media types and envelope options and shapes.
For example, window envelopes, which were once only used for business mail, can now be used as a creative element of direct mail. Window envelopes can provide a peek into your envelope’s contents—no matter what you are selling. They can also reduce addressing costs.
Inkjet printers can also print on thicker media such as padded envelopes or boxes. This type of media is guaranteed to stand out in the recipient’s mailbox and get the attention you want. Some inkjet solutions can also accommodate envelopes that are specially designed with creative shapes such a circle or the outline of a house.
Best of all, these capabilities come at an affordable cost. Memjet-powered digital inkjet solutions are available in a range of sizes and prices, which gives anyone who produces direct mail—corporate mail rooms, dedicated print shops, marketing services providers, and mailing houses—the tools to deliver more impactful, short- and long-run campaigns that generate a much higher ROI.
Visit our mailing and address page to learn more how these solutions are meet the demands of today’s modern marketers.