First Move Direct Marketing

35 Years of Delivering Direct Marketing Success

35 Years of Delivering Direct Marketing Success

Why Is Direct Mail Still Effective In The 21st Century ? Mail Volumes At Their Highest For 2 Years in 2022

Is Direct Mail old fashioned? Tired – past its Prime? Overtaken by e-mail?

…….. and now look at what is happening in 2022.

As direct marketers the main reason we do this is to build brands, inform, generate a response – so lets explore this and compare e-mail and direct mail – their strengths and weaknesses.


fast, quick, low cost and research shows it is preferred when they know the organisation that is contacting them. Average open rates in 2021 for Advertising and Marketing were 20.5% and a unique click through rate of 9%. Only 3.0% of those who received the e-mail actually visited a web page and that generated an average response rate of 0.12%. Where you have a relationship with the individual results improve and the top performers had an open rate of 38.6% but 25% of e-mailers only achieved 7%.

Data shows that e-mail can and does work but the sheer volume of clutter in peoples in-boxes. E-mails are great at communication mainly if the recipient knows you.

Generating new enquiries is far more difficult due to low open and response rates and the difficulty in sourcing good quality e-mail lists.

Direct Mail 

100% delivery, mail makes 70% of consumers feel more valued. A record 96% of all mail was engaged with during the lock down.

Mail is described by 87% of people as believable – printed marketing is the most trust worthy form of communication, 66% of consumers keep their mail for over 2 weeks. Even in a digital world direct mail gets 44% of recipients to go your website. Average response rates are 4%. Some sort of action is taken by 70% – discussed, passed to another, action taken.

Research undertaken at Bangor University looked at how the brain reacts to printed material vs. virtual stimuli. The “real” experience that the physical media provides means it’s better at becoming part of your memory. It generates more emotion. Helps to develop more positive brand associations. The materials have a more personal effect, and therefore aid motivation.

Over 35% of all people bought something, made a payment or donation having received mail in the last 12 months.

A response rate of 30 times that of e-mail and coupled with the availability of large quantities of reliable data provides a great opportunity to build your business. AND you can reach 30 million households in the UK.

There is no one way to undertake your marketing. You should be using all the methods available to communicate that are open to you.

Research proves that using direct mail and e-mail together increases effectiveness on average by 24% vs. using individual methods on their own.


2 Millward Brown Neuroscience –
3 A hierarchy of basic needs –
4 Marketreach

You might also be interested in the following articles:

5 Reasons to take another look at Direct Mail

Why use Direct Mail within your Marketing Mix?

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