Marketing strategies, today, should consider direct mail a priority. Recent reports have suggested that the combination of direct mail and digital advertising can contribute to a 118% lift in response rates, further expanding your customer base and, subsequently, profits.
When considered direct mail marketing campaigns, you must look into the direct mail fulfilment. This is crucial to the success of your advertising and will ensure a smooth process for the project. A good mailing house will provide advice on direct mail fulfilment and host the necessary technology. Washington Direct Mail, a UK wide mailing company, are sharing their guide to direct mail fulfilment.
What is Direct Mail Fulfilment?
Firstly, we need to understand the procedure for direct mail fulfilment. This service refers to everything that happens from the initial campaign idea, to the final steps – the point where the consumer receives your mailing and, hopefully, engages with your brand.
After the design has been agreed upon and printed using the finest materials, there are some critical stages to discuss with your mailing house, before your order is fulfilled. There are several different steps involved to ensure your campaign is successfully distributed and your desired results – whether that involves improved response rates or website visits – are achieved.
Primary Direct Mail Fulfilment Stages
Once your campaign has been printed and is ready to go, it’s possible you may need somewhere to store it. If you’re sending your direct mail campaign in stages, you should discuss the warehouse possibilities with your mailing house before going ahead with the project. If they do not offer this service, you may need to source an alternative warehouse if you do not have the resources in-house.
Packing and packaging
There are always packing and packaging requirements to consider with your campaign:
Envelope inserting can be done by machine or by hand, depending on the volume of your marketing campaign. Usually, a requirement is needed for both, so you need to consider the services offered by your chosen mailing company. If you are sending our transactional direct mail, inserting options are, typically, required.
Automated folding capabilities are vital, especially when dealing with thousands of mailing campaigns that need inserts and letter folding. Leading mailing companies should continuously adapt to this technology.
If you are running your direct marketing campaign on a smaller budget, polywrapping is a low-cost solution for direct mail fulfilment. The technology is often used for magazines, books and catalogues (for E-commerce brands), and can include inkjet printing and carrier sheet addressing. Mailing houses using automated systems are preferred, as they can guarantee security and speed.
The final stage (aside from measuring the success of your campaign) is distribution. Your mail campaign should be produced to maximise postage savings and minimise time – one of the primary reasons companies use the services of direct mail companies. Always look for services that offer the best mailing options, whether that be 10 pieces or a million.
How to Choose a Mailing House
Direct mail fulfilment is relatively standard across the industries. However, many direct mail companies may offer different components and ideas on how best to achieve your results, so you should always consider all aspects. Factors to consider:
- Referrals are essential: Other businesses and colleagues within your industry may have experience in producing direct mail, helping to ascertain a list of mail service providers in your area.
- Site visits: You should always arrange to visit the mailing house prior to sending your campaign to get a feel for the processing, how they work etc. and meet the people dealing with your advertising.
- Security: As mentioned above, you may need to secure direct mail in their warehouse, so security is a priority.
- Quality: Ask to see previous examples of campaigns to assess their finalised products and timescales.
- Guarantees: Speaking of timescales, your direct mail provider should give you a guarantee of when the order will be completed, and to the desired standards.
Ultimately, direct mail fulfilment will contribute to your campaign success and should always be considered as part of your marketing strategy.