Communication is the key to any successful client-business relationship, whether you are thanking them for their support or encouraging to engage with you further through promotions or sales. The question then becomes: what is the best way to communicate with your customers? The options are nearly endless in the age of technology, but it is worth it to take a step back and stick with what works.

In our previous blog post, we discussed email marketing, the method of communication that has gained more and more popularity over the years. The draw of its low costs and low effort requirements are clear, but if you have an inbox that seems to get more crowded every day, then you already see the disadvantages. In today’s blog, we’ll be going over the pros and cons of direct mail, so you can see for yourself why it should still be in the running for your communication style of choice. When you are ready to see the benefits of going retro, contact ADI Business Machines! We have the mailing equipment you need, refurbished by factory-trained technicians for top-notch quality and available without an expensive, long-term contract. Call today to get a custom quote!

The Advantages of Direct Mail


Direct mail does seem “old school” to a lot of people today, but there is still great value. In fact, as your customers’ inboxes become more and more cluttered, the value of direct mail grows. Studies show that direct mail is actually more effective than email, for several reasons, which we will go into in a moment. How much more effective is it? A study by the Direct Marketing Association showed that when it comes to acting on information or promotions, direct mail prompts 34% more consumers to take action immediately. It also generates 10% more new customers, and prompts a 4.4% response rate versus an average rate of 0.12% for email. If that doesn’t convince you, keep reading!

Longer Lifespan

For one, direct mail has a much longer life than that email you can send with a click. After all, the recipient can simply ignore – or delete – that thoughtfully crafted communication just as quickly. It can also be buried under other marketing emails in a matter of seconds.

On the other hand, postcard or other form of direct mail marketing has a lifespan of seventeen days, which gives your audience the time and space they need to actually read the copy you spent so much time writing.

Creative Opportunities

With physical mail, you also have far more creative freedom — and responsibility. The long life of a piece of physical mail gives more weight to the design of your campaign, since it will be sitting on someone’s table or countertop for more than two weeks, catching their eye every time they walk by. Your design has the time to work its magic and convince your customer to take action, and with a physical, tangible medium, your imagination is effectively the only limit to what you can do.

More Personal

Direct mail also offers a more personal, emotional experience. Studies show that recipients see physical mail as more trustworthy and reliable than email — after all, who knows what viruses might be hiding in those links or attachments? Having something to hold and admire also helps increase your customer’s ability to remember your brand. Instead of becoming obsolete in the digital age, direct mail has actually become something truly special.

The Disadvantages of Direct Mail

Physical Design

There are drawbacks to using direct mail marketing, but they might not be as predictable as you might think. As we pointed out, direct mail actually has more value, both emotionally and business-wise, because it has become rare. You are still faced with the challenges of working with a physical medium, however. You have to consider design elements like ink and paper and how things might change from the computer screen to the printer.


There is also the cost, of course. The return on investment is high, but compared with the minimal cost of email marketing, paying for paper and postage may seem daunting. If you really want to utilize direct mail marketing, you may also be considering mail automation equipment like address printers and folder inserters, which are not insignificant investments. There are trustworthy sources for discount office equipment that you can turn to, however, like ADI Business Machines.

Challenging Contacts

The other problem with direct mail marketing is curating a list of addresses. Consumers these days are hesitant to give out a physical address, which can be a challenge when you are first building your list. It can also be difficult to keep those addresses up-to-date as people move.

Don’t Miss Out

Direct mail may seem like a thing of the past, but it holds incredible value when you truly take advantage of all of its benefits. Email is fast and simple, but direct mail has been shown to be more effective. Email is cheaper, but it’s also easier to ignore. The fact of the matter is, you don’t have to choose one or the other. Direct mail and email work even better when used together, which is a discussion you can look for in an upcoming blog post.

Are you ready to start connecting more with your customers? Invest in direct mail marketing with help from ADI Business Machines. We offer a wide selection of high-quality, refurbished office machines that can make mail automation easy, from automatic folding machines and Pitney Bowes folder inserters to address printers and pressure sealers. Our team of experts can help you find exactly what you need. Explore our site to learn more about the mailing equipment we offer and call today to get a custom quote!