SoftVu Predictions for the Future of Direct Mail
Long past are the days of mail traveling by steamboat, of pneumatic mail tubes, of pigeon post, of five-cent stamps. Yes, direct mail has come a long way, leaving behind its humble origins to evolve into the highly refined, data-driven marketing tool it is today.
And yet there’s still so much direct mail can do. Read on to learn about the trends that are allowing direct mail to adapt to current demands and as a result, ensure marketing messaging remains impactful and engaging.
More and more businesses are incorporating cutting-edge technologies into direct mail pieces. Marketers are discovering that this blending of the innovative with the traditional creates a more inviting experience for recipients.
For example, augmented reality (or AR) gives anyone with a smartphone or tablet the ability to transform a direct mail image into a live video—all by merely pointing a webcam at the image. Thanks to AR, a 2D mailer becomes a 3D experience.
Video-in-print is another innovation that is expected to grow in popularity. The technology works exactly as it sounds: Printed on a card-stock base, a mailer contains a tiny LCD screen on which videos are played. In some cases, as much as two hours of video can be stored. With the press of a “play” button, a direct mail piece is brought to brilliant life.
Finally, there’s near field communication (NFC), which allows for wireless interaction between a direct mail piece and a smartphone. A recipient simply taps a NFC chip with their smartphone and information is then displayed on the device’s screen—a landing page, a sign-up offer, maybe a product video—granting them immediate access to a business’ digital resources.
Today’s hyper-connected consumers know exactly what they want: highly personalized experiences. In an effort to meet this demand, direct mail’s level of personalization will be enhanced greatly.
Here’s how: Better, more accurate data is giving marketers the ability to build campaigns that specifically target distinct segments of their customer and prospect bases. These capabilities will only increase in the coming years, resulting in direct mail that’s more personalized than ever before.
Connecting on multiple channels
Because consumers engage with numerous types of media on a daily basis it makes sense to connect with them across multiple channels. This line of thinking is leading businesses to more fully integrate direct mail into today’s multi-channel marketing efforts—an approach that will become even more prevalent in the years ahead.
Digital mail and direct mail both drive results on their own. But when the two are brought together in one robust marketing campaign, businesses fully maximize their interactions with both customers and prospects.
This is truly an exciting time for the world of direct mail. To learn more about our industry-leading direct mail solutions, please reach out to us today.