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How to Measure the ROI of a Direct Mail Campaign


Direct mail campaigns provide the opportunity to have your product or service in the hands of your target audience. Even in today’s digital world, direct mail provides the ability to increase brand awareness and ultimately drive sales—but that doesn’t mean it’s easy to measure the success.

Is it Possible to Measure the ROI of Direct Mail?

The ability to measure the ROI of a direct mail campaign requires a great deal of strategy, which begins right from the initial creation the piece. Metzgers has years of experience with both direct mail campaigns as a whole—and with the implementation of digital marketing elements designed to drive conversions—as a result, we’ve learned which elements are able to provide the best indicators of success.

How to Measure the ROI of a Direct Mail Campaign

Measuring Traffic Through Personalized URLs

As we’ve previously discussed, a personal touch in a direct mailer can immediately get the recipient’s attention. Applying that logic to the digital aspects of your campaign can make sense as well. Personalized URLs (PURLs) can be created for audience segments, or even for specific individuals. By connecting PURLs to your direct mail campaign, you are able to measure traffic that’s a direct result of your mailer. Increased web traffic means there are eyes on your content that would not be there otherwise, which is an excellent measure of success.

PURLs offer the opportunity to assign different URLs to specific target audiences, allowing your company to measure the ROI for each group. By measuring the traffic to each specific webpage following the mailer, you’re able to attribute the increase in leads to the campaign itself, rather than the marketing mix as a whole. 

Linking Conversions to Direct Mail

Without a digital component woven into a direct mail campaign, it can be nearly impossible to link the piece of mail to an actual purchase. However, when incentives such as activation codes or coupon codes are included on a direct mail piece, you are able to bridge the gap between mailer and conversion.

How to Measure the ROI of a Direct Mail Campaign

Specific codes may be implemented in a variety of ways, many of which include incentives such as coupon codes or redeeming special offers. When including a coupon code, ensure that recipients are able to redeem it online or in-person. It’s also critical to track the use of the code, whether it be digitally or by adding an additional step for salespeople to follow.

Pro Tip: If using a code on your direct mail piece, be sure to create a sense of urgency by highlighting an expiration date or limited offer.

Unique Landing Pages and Event Pages

A popular way to add a digital component to a direct mail piece is through the development of a unique landing page. This is a page built on your website specifically for the campaign—one that cannot be directed to through your site menu.

Place the URL of the landing page on your direct mail piece for users to visit to browse your products, redeem a discount or take advantage of a special offer. Getting the recipient to take an extra step and visit your website is something they probably wouldn’t have done had they not received the direct mail piece. Now you have the opportunity to track the traffic to the landing page as a form of ROI. If you’d like to get more granular and track which users ultimately sign up for an e-newsletter, or enter their information for a free sample, you may create an “event” page.

A good example of a page that triggers an “event” would be the “Thank You for Subscribing” page that follows a newsletter sign up. You may not have sold the user your product immediately following your direct mail campaign, but establishing a line of communication with their email inbox is a step in the right direction. We’d definitely consider that a return on your investment.

How to Measure the ROI of a Direct Mail Campaign

Tracking ROI in Your Direct Mail Campaign

While it does take a bit of creativity, tracking the ROI of a direct mailer is possible. You may have to integrate a new step or two into your usual process, but the ability to measure and report your success back to the C-suite is extremely valuable.

Metzgers has years of experience implementing these initiatives into our client's campaigns—and we can help you do the same. Contact a Metzgers sales representative at 419.861.8611 to learn the best way for our company to reach your target audience and track your success.