Anyone who believes direct mail is dead likely hasn’t been following the world’s largest companies too closely. That’s because, rather than being dead, direct mail is alive, well, and used to great effect by some of the world’s major corporations to great effect. Here are a few of the companies and campaigns we’ve featured over the past few years.
In March of 2013, we highlighted five big name companies that were (and still are) using direct mail to great effect to reach customers over a large geographical area. These are the companies, and their basic strategies:
- Burger King has been using a combination of surveys and in-store opt-ins and coupons mailed to customers to generate business for many years. They keep doing it because it continues to work.
- Enfamil, the infant formula brand made famous by Mead Johnson, is another company that has successfully used coupons as a direct marketing strategy for many years.
- Tylenol, probably the best known over the counter pain relief brand in North America, built its brand (at least in part) by inviting potential customers to write to them in return for free products.
- Botanic Choice, a health company in Indiana, uses flyers, coupons and other opt-in methods to great effect in their extensive and frequent marketing efforts.
- Google has been using direct mail to send coupons, information and other items to customers for years, and they’re likely to continue to do so for many more to come.
- Apple, arguably the world’s coolest tech company, is another regular user of direct mail marketing. They’ve also successfully put their own spin on direct mail, by choosing cool posters instead of flyers for one of their campaigns.
If direct mail is cool and current enough for a company that routinely has fans camping out to await the release of their latest products, it’s definitely cool enough for everyone else!
When a quirky, original and pretty unique company chooses to use a method of marketing that most people would consider to be outdated and old fashioned, it’s probably time to sit up and take notice.
- IKEA, that uniquely Scandinavian purveyor of affordable furniture and homewares, is the final major brand on this list, and one of the companies out there that still chooses to send out regular catalogs, with real success. They are masters of direct mail and have turned their catalog into almost magazine-quality pieces.
All of these companies have employed very different strategies with their direct mail campaigns, and they’ve had phenomenal success. It’s proof that even when you’re at the cutting edge of technology or design, old fashioned marketing and tangible pieces can still have an enormous impact.
If you are considering something new for your marketing this year, maybe it’s time to try something older instead? After all, there’s overwhelming evidence that a well-executed direct mail campaign can boost your retail store, as well as online and other sales.