Postage is expensive, no arguments there, but if direct mail is still a winning channel for you then it’s important to make the most out of your campaign. Here are our top 7 tips to get more bang for your buck.
1. FIX YOUR DATA
Mailing to incorrect, duplicated, incomplete or invalid addresses is a waste of money, so make sure your data is as clean as possible before you hand it over to a mail house. If you are unable, Printcraft can perform some data cleaning magic, but you must remove all returned mail records first.
2. USE THE BEST POSTAGE DISCOUNT APPLICABLE
Generally this will be the job of the mail house, but if you’re managing your own processing you’ll need to present the mail correctly to Australia Post to receive a discount. Here is a quick run down of some of the options Aussie Post offers.
Clean Mail – 300 plus machine addressed letters with no barcode. This is the easiest option to prepare and lodge outside of a mail house and will save you a few cents per item off the standard rate.
Print Post – publications mailed at least twice a year with more than 100 records. You must register for a Print Post number and sort and present the mail correctly for Australia Post. For more information on Print Post read our recent article.
Promo Mail – Large volumes of promotional mail under the size of 240 x 130mm. You must sort and present the mail correctly for Australia Post but this will save you around 30c per item compared to full rate.
Presort – 300 plus machine addressed letter with a barcode. You must sort and present the mail correctly for Australia Post but this will also give you a nice discount.
Charity Mail – discounts for tax exempt charities.
3. CONSIDER THE SIZE & WEIGHT Size does matter when delivering any sort of mail, and Australia Post are very strict about enforcing their guidelines, especially when it comes to the heavily discounted options. In saying that, unique sizes and shapes may give you a higher response on your campaign, especially if the mail out numbers are small, so make sure you calculate your ROI to see if it’s worth the extra postage.
4. CUT THROUGH ON THE PACKAGING There are a few ways to send your direct mail via Australia Post.
Inside a Carrier – This can be either plastic, cardboard or an envelope. All have their advantages and disadvantages, and some may impact on the post charge. Plastic will make your product visible without opening, but create more of a ‘magazine’ type feel. Envelopes hide the contents making them more likely to be opened if personally addressed.
Self Mailer – A self mailer is a multi fold brochure, sealed by glue strips or dots. It does not require an additional carrier and can be mailed as a stand alone piece.
Postcard – Double sided postcards are cost effective to produce and mail. Add a touch of personalisation for a bigger impact and better response.
Impact Mail – Australia Post does have a special category for items of any shape or material. For more information on Impact Mail check out the Australia Post web link here.
5. SEGMENT YOUR DATA Try breaking up your data and sending different offers, messages and creative to each segment. This doesn’t necessarily need to blow your budget, but it could give you a better response. Simple segments could be geographical, gender, existing vs new customers, regular donors vs non regular donors. Using one supplier to print and mail will economise your production costs, yet not restrict the opportunity to communicate differently to each segment.
6. PERSONALISE Far beyond the salutation, use personalisation to make the piece truly unique and targeted to the recipient. Change imagery to suit gender or lifestyle. Switch up content to make the message more relevant. Read more about personalisation in print.
7. CALL TO ACTION Marketers are often critical of direct mail because the response is often hard to measure and the user experience disjointed. Even with our own direct mail campaigns, although engagement is high, response rates are often low. Our solutions was to add a QR Code, linking a personalised landing page. This created a better flow and far higher response rate.