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Junk mail in waste basket

Decline in ‘junked’ mail

7th November 2016 • Notebook

Better targeting is cited as a key factor in a “significant” reduction in the number of pieces of direct mail that are thrown away and recycled unopened.

Research from Wilmington Millennium Mortascreen reveals that 1.3 billion items went straight in the bin this year, a drop of 500 million from 2013. This equates to an additional £1.6bn being added to the channel’s return on investment.

A reduction in the addressing of items to the homeowner or occupier has also played a part. Almost 60%t of consumers believe that a correctly addressed piece of mail which uses their name suggests that the mailing will be relevant or of interest to them. Only 16% of people think that “dear occupier/homeowner” mailings are worth opening.

Sixteen to 24 year olds are the least likely to bin their direct mail with only one in 12 throwing it away unopened, probably because getting a letter is something of a novelty for this age group. However, over a third (38%) of 45 to 54 year olds will ditch it straight from the mat. Furthermore, areas that are environmentally conscious such as Brighton (14%) are the least likely to bin unopened direct mail, although common sense suggests that opening an envelope does little to increase its environmental impact.

“Direct mail is experiencing a resurgence in popularity amongst consumers and marketers alike,” commented Karen Pritchard, Product Director, Mortascreen. “This is because the industry is cleaning up its act and reducing the amount of irrelevant, poorly targeted, low quality mailings that were the blight of the homeowner a decade ago.

“The number of ‘dear occupier’ mailings are at an all-time low whilst the number of suppressions are up which demonstrates the desire of marketers to build profitable relationships with consumers rather than bombard them in the hopes they’ll buy. As a result, the medium’s ROI is improving, making it one of the most cost efficient and effective ways for marketers to reach their target audiences.”

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