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Email Marketing VS Direct Mail


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When it comes to marketing your business, there are several options you can take advantage of such as using opt-in emails and sending direct mails. Both options have their pros and cons but with the recent Internet development email marketing seems to be more efficient in getting a marketing message across. It’s also a great way to generate sales and leads and may help anticipate the needs of your potential clients and dedicated customers. However, direct mail advertising is also considered to be a sure-fire way to reach a target audience. This article compares the above mentioned types of marketing – email and direct mail advertising.

Cost-efficiency is on the table

It’s as clear as day that quality email marketing is considerably less expensive than direct mail advertising. A promotional email doesn’t cost a fortune to design as you don’t use any materials except text, pictures and graphics incorporated in an email. What concerns direct mail marketing, creative development, printing out brochures and flyers as well as postage can be really expensive, especially taking into account the recent increase in the cost of paper. Thus, using email advertising is really cost-saving for enterprises having mostly online customers. When it comes to companies having a blend of online and non-online clients, advertising via email is a great way to reach email-equipped customers while the rest can be reached through direct mail.

Which way of marketing your business is more effective?

Developing an effective email marketing campaign may take a few hours which makes it possible for the company to respond to market changes quickly. High quality email delivery systems are able to discover wrong email addresses and delete them from the customer list right away. Additionally, it’s easy to control your email open rates and analyse whether your online campaign is successful or requires improvement. It’s also suggested that email marketing may help make money on the web much faster. Moving from an advertising email to the site for getting more information and ordering the necessary product is a piece of cake. It takes the customer just a few seconds to copy and paste the necessary URL or click on the link contained in an email which is impossible with direct mail. Having to type a link from a brochure is not that convenient, especially if the URL is not a simple one.

It may take several weeks to work out a successful direct mail campaign: to design, lay out, print and send your mail. It also takes considerable time to deliver your direct mail though deliverability and response can be easily tracked. Furthermore, it may take several weeks to get undelivered mail back and then you have to spend some time on removing addresses from customer lists manually. On the other hand, using direct mail marketing is beneficial when sending special discount items, giveaways, contest materials and other items which can only be sent via direct mail. When advertising very large or expensive items, the physical presence of the ad reminds the customer to make a buying decision whereas emails sometimes end up in spam filters and recycle bins before being read. To avoid that, it’s essential to make sure your email marketing campaign is well developed and as personalised as possible.

Green marketing

It’s a common fact that lots of commercial enterprises are introducing green standards in their companies. If your business is going green, using email marketing is a great idea as you don’t have to use paper, petrol and other petroleum-based products to get your marketing campaign up and running though you need electricity for email servers, of course. What concerns direct mail marketing, it requires a lot of paper and generates paper waste.

Email vs direct mail marketing: decide for yourself

As can be seen, there are pros and cons of both email marketing and direct mail advertising and it’s imperative to consider your business model before choosing the type of marketing suitable for your company. Take into account that email advertising is really cost-effective and helps reach numerous potential customers at the click of a mouse, without spending time and money on printing and postage. It’s also more environmentally friendly than direct mail marketing requiring a considerable amount of paper which may cost you an arm and a leg. On the other hand, using direct mail is effective when sending promotional items or trying to reach clients without email accounts and Internet access. All in all, it’s a good idea to utilise a mix of both email and direct mail marketing to dramatically increase your customer base.

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