Why Targeted Lists Are Key to Dimensional Mail Success

Prospecting with dimensional mail is both attractive because of high response rates and risky because of high costs. So what’s the key ingredient of success? Mailing lists that are appropriately and tightly targeted, answers a recent Entrepreneur magazine article on dimensional mail. That’s certainly in line with our proprietary list research and years of list brokerage success delivering highly targeted lists for business and nonprofit mailers.

High Response Can Offset High CPM

Here are the facts: The Direct Marketing Association’s 2015 “Response Rate Report” shows dimensional prospecting mail earns a median 2.8% response that betters the 1% of a letter envelope and postcard, or even the 2% of an oversized envelope. Dimensional mail works because it’s often lumpy, bumpy, unusually shaped and/or weightier, which grabs attention in the mailbox and sparks a curiosity about internal rewards that leads to opens. However, while dimensional mail may earn top response rates, it also has the highest cost per thousand, at an average $1,205 compared with a standard letter envelope package’s $583, per the DMA report. This raises the stakes but does not disqualify dimensional mail as an acquisition tool. Overall, dimensional mail for prospecting still comes in at the lowest $43 cost per response, compared with the highest cost per response turned in by catalogs ($112) and oversized mail ($105), per DMA stats.

Targeted Lists Are Key

Success in this response-cost balancing act depends on another ingredient: list targeting. In his recent Entrepreneur article, Craig Simpson, owner of Simpson Direct, Inc., explains why dimensional mail works best with “a small, highly targeted group of prospects.” It is also “invaluable” with “hard-to-reach niches,” especially business-to-business  promotions that need to get past office “gatekeepers,” he notes. Beware the broadly targeted list likely to produce a lower response rate that will “not bring in enough customers to offset the higher production cost of dimensional mail,” advises Simpson.

Reduce Risk With Testing

So if you think dimensional mail could work for you in generating more response from a highly targeted group of prospects, reduce the inherent cost risk by starting small, as Simpson suggests, with list and creative testing. Results tracking can pave the way to rollout of a winning dimensional package. Read Simpson’s article at https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/276555