Direct Mail Marketing vs. Junk Mail

Many people fear that their direct mail marketing campaign will be viewed as junk mail. Most junk mail is not personally addressed to the resident at a home. Direct Mail Marketing requires a more personalized strategy in order to grab the attention of the recipient. Strategic Marketing and Mailing offers tools and tips to help people create effective mail marketing campaigns. Here is some information on the difference between junk mail and direct mail marketing.

Strategic Marketing and Mailing

What is Junk Mail?

You usually know it right away when you see it. You may receive promotional material addressed to Resident. Or catalogs featuring products you would never buy in a million years. Some of it gets sent to you from big companies or retailers you may have heard of. Some of it comes from local businesses plastering your area with their marketing materials. Regardless of how junk mail gets to your mailbox or who sent it, you are not interested so it ends up in the garbage bin.

  • Junk mail is not targeted. It is sent to large lists of people or addresses. Its objective is to wind up in the mailboxes of as many people as possible without regard to demographics, needs or shopping habits.
  • Junk mail is not personal. It may come addressed to “Our Neighbor” or “Current Resident.” If you bother to read it at all, you will notice that it is filled with sweeping generalities designed to apply or appeal to as many people as possible.

Big companies with immediate brand recognition and millions to spend on marketing may be able to get away with mailing as many pieces as they can to as many people as they can. They are hoping that some small percentage of recipients responds. You, however, probably don’t have the budget to try to market your product or service to everyone via direct mailings. Besides, this is not the best use of your funds. Junk mail is no way for you the small business owner to build credibility and bring in more business.

Direct Mail Marketing vs Junk Mail

Direct mail advertising is much different. When done properly, direct mail marketing works very well for small business. Junk mail does not.

  • Direct mail is personal and specific. It speaks directly to the prospect by name. It addresses a problem that the recipient has, fills a need, or fulfills a wish. It compels them to act.
  • Effective direct mail advertising is primarily focused on the prospect, not on you or your business.
  • Direct mail advertising is targeted. The recipients have been identified and chosen for a specific reason. Direct mail is not sent to every address within a range of zip codes.

The difference between junk mail and direct mail should be clear in your mind before you start your first direct mail campaign. Before you stuff that first envelope or drop your postcard in a mailbox, ask yourself whether you’re sending junk mail or not.


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