Archive for the ‘Direct Mail’ Category

Is the Royal Mail’s potential price hike a reflection of the shift from traditional to new channels of marketing…?

Monday, June 13th, 2011

The Direct Marketing Association (DMA) reported last week on the implications that the Postal Services Bill passed by Parliament will have on Royal Mail and businesses use of direct mail as a way of communicating with consumers.  According to Marketing Week the report emphasized the price increases that we have seen in the last 12 months and how this is expected to rise yet again. The likely result being that companies will move away from mailing consumers direct and find other forms of marketing to communicate their message. This is a reflection on how digital marketing is growing and that price increases in mailing information will certainly lead to more companies abandoning this form of marketing completely.
This is evident with the latest benchmarking report from the DMA indicating that email is in fact driving the growth of the digital economy with email volumes rising a whopping 50% in the first half of 2010! Businesses are turning to email to achieve their marketing goals.  This again highlights that businesses are not necessarily abandoning direct marketing, with all the hype surrounding Twitter and Facebook but certainly moving to more cost effective ways of targeted marketing.  Is this a result of the improvement in tracking response rates?
Is there a shift from traditional to social media marketing? NO… marketing is not abandoning direct, targeted marketing, rather marketers are recognizing the importance of data validation and tracking successes of marketing campaigns and are therefore increasing digital marketing activity as a channel to conduct their marketing campaigns.  Chapter 15 of Marketing Communications: A Brand Narrative Approach refers to a successful Bluewater. Retail Shopping Mall Promotion still using a combination of direct marketing and experimental marketing to launch a promotional campaign (page 440).  –This goes back to the importance of integrated marketing communications once again!


Are Royal Mail encouraging or discouraging companies to use direct mail…?

Wednesday, April 27th, 2011

In a bid to support businesses in their direct mail campaigns and grow the direct mail sector, the Royal Mail has launched the new ‘Advertising Mail service’, to promote the role of direct mail as a form of advertising activity (for detailed information on the new service visit,  This is positive news for the industry and as we are all well aware, the increase in support comes at a price…! ).  The question will be whether the costs incurred will impact decisions on the allocation of resources within marketing departments.

This is one of many campaigns that Royal Mail has launched in recent years and according to Mark Thompson, Royal Mail’s media director, direct mail is performing well as a result of increasing ROI compared with other forms of marketing communications such as TV, press and digital (for the full report visit,  An interesting claim from Mark Thompson, however is he not considering the fact that by increasing prices, Royal Mail will impact on ROI and therefore companies will need to evaluate whether direct mail is cost effective.  A similar concern has been voiced in a recent report from the DMA with regards to Direct Mail’s price increases.  Chris Combemale, executive director of the DMA, expresses concern that the raise in funds at the expense of businesses will have a massive impact on marketing decisions and the move to digital (for the full report visit,

The changing nature of marketing communications means that companies are exploring marketing channels such as social media, more and more to communicate with consumers.  Micael Dahlen explores the rate of change in the digital revolution and how advertising campaigns using sites like YouTube are being used more widely (for more information see chapter 16, Beyond Traditional Marketing Communications)

Will companies see this as an incentive to increase direct mail activity, or will the hike in prices drive more marketers online? Companies are tightening budgets on marketing spend, consumers are going online more and more to obtain information, and companies are investing more resources on researching online marketing communications.  We may well see a drop in direct mail after all…!