Direct Mail Printing Appeals to Recession-Conscious Consumers

And it's not bad for tight ad budgets, either!

I've had direct mail on the brain lately. First, it made my advertising/branding trends to watch list for 2008, THEN I listed it as a great way for designers to self-promote during this recession.

But I only just realized why the topic keeps coming up – because we've seen a rise in direct mail marketing in recent months. At a time when budgets are tight, direct mail is one of the most effective and economical forms of print advertisement. For advertisers, AND for consumers.

I'll be the first to admit that direct mail printing can be perceived as 'junk mail' at times. But not when people are watching their bank accounts, and looking for savings. For consumers, a piece of direct mail is now an opportunity to find out about sales and special pricing, and to cut coupons, of course.

In the words of print marketing expert Margie Dana, “In direct marketing, nothing matters more than the right offer to the right person at the right time.” And in today's economic climate, that means sending consumers budget solutions in the mail just when we need them.

As banks know all too well, direct mail is also a great means of connecting with clients and customers when they're feeling pressured or concerned about their situation. Print in the Mix – an amazing source for information on the effectiveness of print media – reports that in the last quarter of 2008, direct mail printing from local banks soared by 42%, most of it focused on reassuring customers.

So if you're stuck for print promotion ideas over the holidays or in the new year, consider a round or two of direct mail printing. Focus your print design strategy on the savings you're offering customers, present them with special deals, and most importantly, make sure they can access and buy off your website, guided by information in your direct mail piece.

From mailbox to website to credit card, direct mail can make a sale fast, even during a recession. People with money to burn may overlook a catalogue of savings that shows up at their front door, but anyone seeking to budget (and there's a few of us out there right now!) will actually appreciate your effort to connect.

And for businesses cutting down on ad spending, the savings and great ROI from something as simple as a postcard mailer can't be beat!

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