I probably get asked this question, or some variation of it, about 5 times a day. And, being in the direct mail business, I would really like to be able to say direct mail, specifically postcards. But in reality, most businesses cannot survive and grow on one type of advertising.
Modern Postcard uses a wide variety of advertising including direct mail, email, tradeshows, print advertising, social media, search engine optimization and pay per click. And we do all this to get direct marketing customers. It is more critical today than ever before to advertise to your audience using the medium that they're most likely to respond to.
Think about what you respond to... Is it a postcard in the mailbox with a 2 for 1 special to the new restaurant that opened up down the street? How about a newspaper advertisement with a 40% off coupon to the sale at Macy's? Or an email from the local golf course you play at regularly, promoting a special twilight rate on weekdays? More than likely, each of these businesses advertised using all three media, but it was one that got you to respond. You may even have seen all three advertisements, but responded to only one of them. This is the power of multi-channel marketing.
While each medium is useful and can yield profitable results, it is important to determine where to focus your efforts and what percentage of your advertising budget you should dedicate to each medium. It really depends on what you are trying to accomplish.
If you are communicating with your existing customers, email is a great tool since you already have the email addresses and emails can be sent for a very low cost. Most open rates to existing customers hover around the 10%-20% with the same 10%-20% opening your email on a regular basis. That means you have 80%-90% of your customer base not opening their emails on a regular basis. This should be a little concerning to you in today's competitive business environment. By also sending a direct mail piece on a monthly, or at least, quarterly basis, you'll ensure that all of your customers know they are valued and you can continue to develop a relationship with them.
Remember, if you are not communicating with your customers, somebody else is. Most likely it is your competitor. Make sure you touch your customers using all of the tools that you have available to you. When you send a postcard, it is already open and your customer sees that you value your relationship.