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5 Effective Use Cases for Personalized Direct Mail

People love getting direct mail. There’s something heartwarming about receiving a note or message that was composed just for you. It’s why 41% of people look forward to checking their mail each day. 

It’s also why 94% of people have a very positive reaction to getting a letter from someone they know. The time and effort involved are almost more impactful than the message itself. 

So, then why aren’t more marketing campaigns tapping into this visceral reaction to personalized direct mail? After all, direct mail campaigns have much higher response rates than email and mobile channels.

Too many companies are relying on broad, sweeping promotional campaigns when it comes to direct mail. These types of campaigns are often manual, requiring exporting customer segments large enough to print in mass quantities. All said, it could take weeks to complete!

This inefficient process meant that many strong use cases for direct mail were simply ignored.

In an effort to fill this gap, Iterable and Poplar have forged a partnership and integration to combine the power of customer data with automation and technology, allowing a user to print and mail any quantity in days—not weeks. This partnership unlocks the true power of personalized, automated direct mail campaigns. 

To help you get started, we’ve compiled the 5 essential use cases to improve the effectiveness of your direct mail campaigns.

The 5 Essential Direct Mail Use Cases

1. Cart Abandonment

After a  customer adds something to their cart, one of two things generally happens. They either buy the item(s)—yay!—or they don’t. Maybe they lost interest. Maybe they got distracted and simply forgot to complete the transaction. 

Whatever happened, it’s important to know that not all hope is lost.

In this situation, direct mail campaigns are vital to completing that transaction. Many brands use display ads, which are becoming less effective as ad blockers grow. Others rely on emails, which just isn’t enough for a well-rounded cart abandonment campaign.

You can greatly increase your chances of converting that customer by triggering an eye-catching direct mailer to the customer, and even provide a promotion or discount to incentivize a purchase.

The key to this step is automation. It can be cumbersome to create a new template or campaign with every abandoned cart. Based on our experience with customers, using Iterable and Poplar, you can now trigger a direct mail piece directly to that customer and have it arrive within a week.

2. Cross-Sell and Upsell

A comprehensive customer profile keeps direct mail campaigns effective. Understanding a customer’s behavior at a deeper level enables individualized marketing campaigns for greater success.

Establish specific purchase triggers that capture customer behavior at the granular level. For example, say you have a customer that has purchased multiple items in a core category. 

When your system takes note of these actions, you can immediately send a personalized direct mail with a cross-sell or upsell offer that incentivizes purchase of items in a related category to expand the breadth of this customer’s interactions with your brand. 

Relevance is key to successful cross-sell and upsell campaigns. If a customer has shown interest in furniture, it doesn’t make sense to offer discounts in kitchenware. Utilize the extent of your customer profiles to ensure your direct mailers are relevant to the recipient.

3. Personalization

Traditional direct mail can feel impersonal. With the way traditional printing works, you have to send the same message to tens of thousands of customers or prospects, even knowing that each individual’s interests are unique.

It’s inefficient and dampens the impact of your message. 

By feeding customer data into Poplar through Iterable, you can personalize each mailer on a one-to-one basis to make each customer feel as if you are speaking directly to them. 

The possibilities are endless: Promote new products in their favorite categories, personalize greetings with their name, or even offer an anniversary gift to celebrate a year since their first purchase date!

Personalization gives you the chance to incorporate the human connection of direct mail. Remember that visceral reaction from above? A personalized direct mailer builds that connection and sentiment of extra effort and care built into your marketing campaign.

4. Email Lead Conversion

As you grow, so too should your email lists. Depending on the size of these lists, it can get a little difficult to keep each user profile fresh and updated. 

Your ultimate goal is to convert as many of these leads into customers as possible. But how do you achieve this goal while still keeping a one-to-one conversation with customers through direct mail?

By feeding this data into Iterable, you can easily add direct mail to your marketing mix in a way that was impossible before. Even if you don’t have the mailing address of these subscribers, Poplar, using its network of hundreds of millions of contacts, can append physical addresses to those email addresses, allowing you to physically mail your prospect pool with up to a 60% match rate. 

As an added benefit, because you have all of your data in one place with Iterable, you can easily A/B test to optimize the right channel mix, ensuring you reach every customer at the right time with the right channel.

Such functionality allows you to round out your user profiles and enhance the cross-channel experience for increased chances of conversion.

5. Location Targeting

If brick-and-mortar retail locations are a big part of your business, then location targeting is essential to driving in-store purchases. 

Poplar offers dynamic location targeting to utilize information on a customer’s proximity to your store locations. This level of campaign specificity shows the customer you are keeping their experience and journey in mind. 

Poplar Location-Based Postcard

Dynamic location targeting enhances your direct mail to give customers more relevant, granular information.

Rather than having to seek out a location, the customer is informed directly by your brand where they can purchase items of interest to them. With Poplar’s dynamic creative abilities, you can even insert this store-specific messaging into each mailer without the need to generate dozens or hundreds of individual creative assets.  

Even if your brand doesn’t have retail stores, dynamic location targeting can impact direct mail messaging to tailor promotions or discounts to geographic-specific information, such as weather (hot weather messaging to Los Angeles, but cold weather messaging to New York!) or local events.

Location-specific details in your direct mail messaging show the customer you’re paying attention to the information they have shared with you, and that you are using this information to improve their experience with your brand.

The One-to-One Conversation

A high-quality direct mail campaign keeps your brand top of mind and in a positive light. 

Incorporating granular customer data with automated, triggered direct mail capabilities keeps your campaigns relevant and allows you to deliver them a direct mail at the perfect time when it’s most likely to impact their decision. 

You want the customer feeling as if you’ve taken the time to write them a note with information for them, and them alone. In essence, you want them to feel like you are a valued friend giving them a brand recommendation that they can trust.

Now that is impactful, effective and personal. 

Read our support article to learn more about the Poplar and Iterable integration or sign up for a demo today!

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