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5 Ways to Make Your Direct Mail More Relevant Using Data

Written By Amber Breeden

January 12, 2022

Today, personalization in direct mail goes way beyond including a recipient’s first name. Consumers have come to expect a highly customized, relevant experience across all channels. Delivering this level of personalization may be more work for you as a marketer, but the effort pays off. According to a report by Epsilon, 80% of consumers are more likely to transact with a brand when they’re offered personalized experiences. It’s important to use your customer data to make your direct mail as relevant and effective as your digital marketing.

The real question is: how can you do this in a way that’s realistic and scalable? It can be a challenge, especially for small businesses that have limited marketing data or resources. Here are five ways you can use your data to make your direct mail more relevant. These ideas run the gamut from simple to sophisticated, so there’s something for every marketing team.

1. Use giving history.

If you’re reaching out to previous donors, acknowledge their past gifts. And if you know they usually donate a certain dollar figure, tailor your suggested donation amounts to fit within that range. For example, if John Doe gave $100 last year, suggest donation amounts of $100, $150, $200, and $300 rather than $50, $75, $100, and $200.

2. Segment by job title/level.

Let’s say your association is offering a new professional development course for training managers. You want to target both the person who would take the course as well as the person signing off on the expense, like a VP of HR. But the benefits you’d highlight for each audience would be very different. For the training manager, you might focus on how the course will make them more successful in their current job and better prepared for future opportunities. For the VP, however, you want to highlight the value of the investment in terms of efficiency, business goals, and quality of outcomes. Creating key messaging by job title or level keeps your marketing relevant for each group

3. Leverage location.

Using a recipient’s location can be helpful in both practical and conceptual ways. If you’re marketing a franchise with multiple locations, you can use a recipient’s address to match them to your nearest location and even provide a map to help them get there. You can also use location to create a sense of competition or urgency. Show your prospects how many people in their immediate area are already benefiting from your product or service, with the implication that they’ll be missing out or left behind if they don’t take advantage of your offer. Peer pressure can be a helpful marketing tool.

4. Follow up on an action or event.

If 100 people sign up for your webinar on data security, follow up with a postcard recapping your main points and driving them back to your website for more resources. This is also a great opportunity to highlight your full suite of security consulting services. Only have email addresses for attendees? No worries—there are tools that can match data and fill in the gaps to provide you with mailing addresses

5. Use one data point to cross-reference another.

If you’re trying to reengage lapsed customers, you can use their inactive date (when they stopped using your product or service) to show them what they’ve been missing. You might highlight recent features you’ve released, new properties that have come on the market, or how much money they could have made if only they’d followed your investment advice.

As you can see, it doesn’t matter if you’re a nonprofit, a consulting firm, or in real estate—there are ways to use the data you have to make your marketing communications more effective and relevant. Interested in learning more about how to leverage your data? Drop us a line.