Direct Mail Tag

Direct Mail Trends

The 5 Most Consistent Direct Mail Trends That You Can Apply Now

The national direct mail database Who’s Mailing What! (WMW!) recently analyzed its database of more than 130,000 mail pieces to find the strongest, most consistent direct mail trends over the past 20 years. We’ve picked five that we think are most relevant to small to mid-sized businesses. How many of these do you see in your own marketing?


1. Postcards are on the rise


Between 2009–2021, the number of postcards being mailed increased by approximately 20%, while self-mailers and envelopes declined slightly. This trend is in line with the next one, which is…


2. Businesses are using less copy


Over the past 20 years, WMW! found that the number of words used in direct mail pieces has declined, on average, by 62%. Direct mail is also using shorter sentences, more concise paragraphs, and bullet points. Many campaigns have replaced the text with images, charts, and graphics that provide quick, easy comprehension in today’s fast-paced world.


3. Focus on print-to-digital


Whether businesses are engaging with their audiences with QR Codes or driving them online to their websites or social media channels, the interaction between print and digital channels is rocketing. The use of user names (@ username), QR Codes, and digital CTAs such as “follow us” or “visit our website” have doubled in the past four years.


4. Sustainability messaging is hot


Buyers care about the environment, and they appreciate brands that show they care, too. The WMW! database was established 20 years ago, and of the direct mail messaging that contains a sustainability element, 75% has come in the last five years.


5. Even young companies are using direct mail


When WMW! looked at the age of the companies in its direct mail database, it found that the percentage of companies founded in the 1980s, 1990s, 2000s, and 2010s was nearly identical. Very young companies like Uber Eats, DoorDash, and Payson are all using direct mail.


Why has direct mail remained strong, even in the age of digital? Who’s Mailing What! editors wrapped it up concisely:


  • Done right, it has a higher response rate than digital channels.
  • It reaches audiences that digital channels don’t.
  • Using paper, ink, and interesting finishing, even young companies can stand out from their older, more established competitors.


The numbers don’t lie – direct mail still works!

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Want Better Direct Mail Copy? Tighten It Up!

Want Better Direct Mail Copy? Tighten It Up!


What’s one of the keys to creating great direct mail copy? Keeping it tight!


Over the years, the amount of copy used in direct mail campaigns has dropped. In fact, according to Who’s Mailing What! (WMW!), a national database of direct mail, the amount of copy used in direct mail pieces has dropped by a whopping 62% over the past two decades.


WMW! discovered this trend after analyzing its direct mail database for its “Top 21 Direct Mail Trends for 2021” report. It cites as a prime example:

For years, [Amazon has] been mailing letters to remind Prime members that they’re entitled to watch Prime Video, but there’s a big difference in word count from 2014 to 2021 example. [In the 2021 piece,] you see…


  • Shorter sentences,
  • Much smaller paragraphs, [and]
  • A few bullet points.


This finding is consistent with what we are seeing elsewhere in the direct mail space. Shoppers are busy, and they have limited time to read. Rather than text-heavy copy, more and more mailers are using images, charts, and graphics that readers can digest quickly.


The trend toward shorter copy ties in another trend on WMW!’s list—the growth in the use of postcards. With any direct mail piece, but especially postcards, you have only a fraction of a second to grab someone’s attention and get your message across before they move on to something else.

If your direct mail copy – whether a letter, a postcard, or any other marketing piece — looks text-heavy, think about where you might be able to tighten up. Where can you use charts or images instead of words? Can you break concepts into bullet points? Imagine that you only have half the space to work with – what information can go?

Buyers are busy, so make it easy on them. Tighten it up!  Need help? Talk to us about our services ☎ 713.956.8555


Do Self-Mailers Have Benefits Over Direct Mail Envelopes? You Bet!

Do Self-Mailers Have Benefits Over Direct Mail Envelopes? You Bet!

For many businesses, direct mail letters are their “go-to.” They are inexpensive to produce, can include BREs and other inserts, and depending on the design, can seem more personal than self-mailers. Still, the popularity of self mailers is growing. They, too, are inexpensive and have many benefits.

Self-mailers are created when a single piece of paper is folded to create a self-contained mailing format. Depending on the size of the sheet, self-mailers can be folded into two or more panels. They can be sealed using glue lines, wafer seals, or glue spots along the edge. SEO tools

Let’s take a look at some of their benefits:

  • Because they require no envelope, self-mailers have no envelope or inserting costs. This makes them a great option for tight budgets.
  • When unfolded, self-mailers provide lots of real estate for graphics and messaging.
  • Even on digital presses, self mailers can be printed on a wide variety of substrates, including heavier substrates.
  • While we tend to think of self-mailers as simple, folded formats, their substrate flexibility allows them to include pockets and interior panels into which you can insert gift cards, reply cards, or small samples.
  • Because self-mailers can be digitally printed, they can be fully personalized like any other mailer.

Self-mailers are readily identifiable as marketing mail, so they can have lower response rates. For this reason, some businesses use them for mailing to people with whom they already have a relationship—loyal customers who will open them simply because of their relationship with the brand. Others use them for campaigns in which people want promotional mail. Examples include promotions around clearance sales, new store openings with discounts, and free samples. We see them heavily used around college recruiting, as well.

In the end, choosing the correct format depends on your target audience and the goals of the campaign. Testing will be critical in helping you identify when and where each format will work best for you.

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Top Reasons Consumers Open Mail

The more you know about why the mail gets opened, the more you can tweak your campaigns for maximum effectiveness. Recipients’ top reason for opening any direct mail piece is that they are interested in the products or services you offer. But did you know that there are other reasons that recipients open their mail, too? These include:

  • Having a positive view of the company.
  • Seeing reading direct mail as a leisure activity.
  • Seeing the production quality (printing/images/paper) as exceptionally high.


Add personalization on top, and you have a potent combination! Why? Personalization increases the chances of your mail being relevant to the recipient. For example, If you know someone’s age and marital status, you can use profiling to assign them to a life stage that gives you insights into their buying habits and needs. Likewise, if you know that a customer regularly buys books by a particular author, you can alert them when that author releases a new title.

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Studies have found that recipients also open direct mail pieces because they have a positive view of the company. This tells us that regular, ongoing branding plays a key (if indirect) role in sales. When you invest in branding campaigns, even if you aren’t selling anything in those campaigns, this increases the likelihood that the recipient will open your direct mail piece. Even if the recipient does not have an interest in the product at the time, if they like your brand, they are likely to check out the offer anyway.

Production Quality

Want to increase the effectiveness of your direct mail even more? Studies have found that adding high-quality printing, imaging, and paper quality can increase open rates as well! When a piece is of very high quality, recipients feel obligated to open it and see what you have to say.

Combine these with personalized messaging, and your marketing pieces will have incredible stopping—and converting—power.

Would you like to CONTACT US? You can expect to receive a response back QUICK by calling, messaging, or emailing us!


Direct-Mail Top 11 Eye-Popping Stats


11 Direct-Mail Eye-Popping Stats

When it comes to ROI, some channels are just more effective than others. Knowing the effectiveness of each channel puts you in control. For example, did you know that one channel has an open/read rate of 42%? Or that recipients of content sent via this channel purchase 28% more items and spend 28% more than those who do not? Which channel is this? It’s direct-mail. Surprised? You shouldn’t be. Here are nine more statistics about direct-mail that you should know.


41% of direct mail recipients look forward to checking their mailboxes each day. (Source: Gallup)


73% of American consumers say they prefer being contacted by brands via direct-mail because they can read it whenever they want. (Source: Epsilon)


Direct-mail offers a 29% return on investment. (Source: Marketing Charts)


Consumers aged 45-54 are the demographic group most likely to respond to direct-mail pieces. (Source: Data & Marketing Association)


80–90% of direct mail gets opened, while only 20–30% of email does. (Source: United States Postal Service)


Only 44% of people can recall a brand immediately after seeing a digital ad compared to 75% of those who receive direct mail. (Source: Marketing Profs)


Direct mail requires 21% less cognitive effort to process than email. (Source: Ipsos/Canada Post)


Brand recall is 70% higher for consumers exposed to direct mail ads than to digital ads. (Source: Ipsos/Canada Post)


30% of Millennials say that direct mail is more effective at getting them to take action compared to 24% who say the same of email. (Source: Direct Marketing News)


Think direct-mail is a marketing rock star? We do, too! Talk to us about creating your next direct mail campaign.


Editor’s note: Thanks to Small Business Genius for compiling many of the stats cited here.


Signature ASPEN is one of the best commercial printing companies in the city of Houston. We provide Direct-Mail services to its targeted areas. Furthermore, we offer top quality services to our clients by offering competitive rates on direct-mail. Signature ASPEN are very confident in offering top quality service and are willing to help in anyway to accomplish the needs of our targeted areas.


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