Direct mail and door drops continue to be key channels in efficiently delivering key messages to consumers when times are tough, with both engagement and effectiveness at their highest level in a year.
That is according to the latest figures from Jicmail, based on data captured from a panel of a thousand households every month, which reveal that 95% of mail was engaged with, which has in turn led to better returns for advertisers, with 30% of mail prompting commercial actions from consumers such as purchases, voucher redemption, website visits and store footfall.
Both mail engagement and mail effectiveness were at their highest level in a year in Q1, with the report maintaining that, at a time when the inflation rate has remained in the double-digits and consumers’ wallets are feeling more stretched than ever, mail has again proven itself to be an effective channel to communicate with households during tough times.
In addition, mail open, read and retention rates have experienced year-on-year growth for the third quarter in a row. Three-quarters of all mailshots – including direct mail, business mail and door-drops – was read in Q1 2023 and 46% was still “live” in the home after 28 days.
Jicmail insists that while increased levels of mail interaction gives advertisers confidence that consumer exposure to their advertising comms is being maximised in the mail channel, they will also be reassured by the growing effectiveness of the mail channel across the entire purchase journey in Q1 2023.
Key metrics related to product discovery improved year-on-year, with 16% of mail driving discussions about brands and 6% prompting consumers to search online for more information. Key customer engagement metrics also improved, with 8% of mail prompting advertiser website visits and 6% driving account log-ins.
When it comes to purchase fulfilment, mail also continued to experience growth in Q1, with 4% of mail prompting a purchase, 2% triggering a voucher redemption and 2% driving store footfall.
Meanwhile, business mail has proven to be an effective channel for delivering much needed money-saving vouchers and coupons to cash-strapped consumers, with voucher interaction rates increasing for the second quarter running (up to 5.6 interactions across a 28-day period).
In addition, the lifespan of door drops grew by 10.9% year on year, with retail and online retail particularly contributing to this trend by recording their highest longevity in the home for two years.
Jicmail director of data leadership and learning Ian Gibbs commented: “Despite stubbornly high levels of inflation, there have been a few rays of sunshine in Q1 with the IPA Bellwether report pointing towards increased advertiser confidence in 2023 and PwC reporting that high street store closures have slowed.
“For those advertisers who are active in the channel, they have seen the reward of improved commercial effectiveness throughout the customer journey.”
Jicmail engagement director Mark Cross added: “The opportunity for practitioners is to appreciate the mindset of their audiences – who in Q1 have yet again demonstrated commercially savvy behaviour as well as high engagement with mail.”
Mail defies strikes and cuts to outgun rival channels
Where will we be in 2023…with data-driven marketing?
Brits far more likely to open a mailshot than an email
Major rise in consumers retaining direct mail for longer
Brands race to embrace mail as confidence returns
Direct mail industry group backs new Jicmail data tool
Email and direct mail ‘the best bedfellows for response’
Mailshots ‘driving record levels of digital engagement’