How many promotional emails did you get in your inbox today?
How many Facebook ads did you scroll past, and how many page updates did you ignore?
The answer, as all too many marketers know, is a lot. With adblocker software use increasing, even on mobile devices, digital ads return fewer and fewer potential leads. In the United States, the primary use of ad blocking software is on desktops, but in South and East Asia, over 100 million mobile devices use ad blocking.
So before you spend the rest of your day crafting email subject lines with the latest tools you learned to increase engagement by a percentage point or two, consider a new way to engage your audience. Catalogs. Print ones, to be specific.
Print catalogs, of course, have been around a long time. They have existed, in fact, since the invention of the printing press, with the first catalog printed in 1495. For a marketing method to have endured for more than 500 years, it must have done something right.
And while marketers may have decided that print was dead as digital advertising took the world by storm, evidence suggests that print catalogs still have a great deal of appeal. According to the USPS, Millennials are strongly engaged by physical marketing, perhaps because they are already so inundated with digital content.
People in that same critical age group are also the ones most likely to be using adblocking software.
Millennials are estimated to spend $600 million a year, and economists expect to see that number increase as the generation has children and buys homes. If digital ads aren’t reaching them – and they aren’t – then marketers need to reach Millennials a different way.
According to the US Postal Service, 64% of households still look forward to receiving the mail, and 81% take the time to look through their mail every day.
If opening the mailbox is equivalent to opening an email, then you’re getting a 100% open rate. Customers can look at your catalog, see your branding and logo, and determine whether they want to look through the offerings or recycle the catalog. Catalogs have staying power too. Customers can pick up the catalog and physically flip through the pages while they drink their morning coffee or as they wind down in the evening.
According to Accenture, 95% of Millennials say that they want to feel actively courted by a brand, and to know that they personally matter to a company. Getting physical mailings is one way that Millennials get the connected feeling they crave.
Marketers constantly say that content is king, and that’s true – but a catalog is an ideal place to showcase your content. Think of Penzey’s, the spice company that got famous for the essays by its founder in the front and back of the catalog. Or the J. Peterman catalog with its amazing sketches and detailed, often humorous, copy.
And if all of that isn’t enough – in a world that keeps insisting that print media is dead, Amazon decided to send out a catalog last year, full of toys and gift suggestions for the holidays. The catalog doesn’t include prices but instead has scan codes to push customers online to make their purchases.
While social media and email campaigns are still important and effective, and content will always be king, don’t rule out the benefits of printed, direct mail marketing. Coupons, flyers, and catalogs are all still winners when it comes to bringing in the shoppers with the most buying power.
Need to know more about how direct mail can get your company the jumpstart it needs? Get in touch with us today to learn more.