Thursday, June 27, 2013

Snail Mail Response Still Beats Digital Channels

Direct mail response is 10 to 30 times higher than that of e-mail, and other digital channels have similar low response rates, according to the latest survey by the Direct Marketing Association (DMA). The DMA report explains that "for every 1,000 existing customers receiving a direct-mail piece, 34 will respond on average. For e-mail, the average response -- measured by taking the click-through rate and multiplying the conversion per click -- is 0.12%," or one in 1,000. And that is true even though direct mail response has declined over time, from 4.37% in 2003 to an average response rate of 3.40% today. When it comes to ROI, however, the survey found that e-mail and digital channels win out. The ROI for e-mail was $28.50 in sales generated for every $1 dollar of e-mail spending. The direct mail ROI is pretty much equivalent to e-mail when acquiring a new customer, but e-mail definitely has the edge when it comes to existing customers, with an ROI that's four times higher than direct mail. For more data, see the Advertising Age article at

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