First Move Names Rachel Smith as Managing Director

First Move direct marketing has appointed Rachel Smith as Managing Director, effective 1 January 2018.

David Amor, has led First Move as Managing Director since 2001 and will become Direct Mail Futurist and Chairman for the company, focusing on identifying new ways to grow the business using artificial intelligence and the companies world leading Xerox inkjet technology.

Rachel joined First Move 11 years ago after having an established career with Lloyds Bank, culminating in Group Risk at the company head office. This structure and process driven background has equipped Rachel with skills to make a real tangible difference across many areas within the business. She has never looked back on her move into direct marketing and her passion for direct mail is evident.

In her new role, Rachel will be based at First Move’s head office in High Wycombe.

Commenting on her appointment, Rachel Smith said: “I am excited to take on this new role and would like to thank David for his trust and support. First Move is at a very dynamic point in its history as we strengthen our proposition through customer and technology-led direct mail marketing solutions. I look forward to working with our partners and team, as we create the future of direct mail for our customers. David and I will continue to work very closely to ensure the companies vision is fulfilled from the ground up right to the very top.”

David Amor says, “I am proud to have led our fine team at First Move for the past 17 years and of the outstanding commercial and technology growth we have achieved over this time. We have grown by helping our customers to grow. I remain committed to the long-term success of First Move but in recent years have started to focus on a succession plan to build the next generation of leadership so that the company is always in highly capable hands and continues to thrive.

We are confident Rachel is the right person for the job with her specialist expertise in shaping strategic direction, transformation leadership, driving change, people development, and delivering significantly increased business performance. We are delighted to be giving Rachel this opportunity and expect great things to come under her leadership.

I will continue to work with First Move and develop our use of artificial intelligence in the analysis of data and its application in producing programmatic mail which is highly individual and relevant to the individuals being contacted. Our installation of a worlds first Xerox Trivor inkjet and its upgrade to High Fusion ink (another world first) gives First Move a fantastic platform upon which to build the future.”

Contact us on 01494 539300 or fill in our online contact form to find out more about our Direct Mail Services.

Digital Marketers return to Direct Mail

How Are Digital Marketers Using Direct Mail?

The propaganda from digital marketeers said direct mail was dead. Now they’re retreating with their tails between their legs begging to be let back in. After all, the already powerful direct mail can have even more impact when paired with digital. But how are the digital natives returning to direct mail and why?

The realisation isn’t surprising and we all predicted it; digital would become so big it was impossible to hear the message clearly. But now with technology it’s easier to refine the message and hit the recipient from multiple channels. Direct mail with digital marketing integration can be even more targeted, personalised to specific individuals and an interactive and offline hybrid.

Avoid the Opt-Out All Together
With digital direct mail you can remove yourself from a list easily, and as mobile phone technology evolves, without searching for the unsubscribe button. This is bad news to marketeers as once you’ve lost a contact’s subscription, you’ll have to have a miracle to regain their following. Direct mail is different. Sending something to someone’s house or business is easy, and provided that you’ve acquired their data legally, totally within the eyes of the law.

Consumers throw things in the bin without hesitation, but unless the content is particularly objectionable, they never bother to find out from where it has come or how to get rid of it. Without the worries of email sender reputation, spam filters or IP blocking, provided Royal Mail is doing its job, nothing will stop it from reaching its recipient.

Increased ROI
Just like email marketing direct mail measurement is a dream. By using metrics and KPIs you can understand the insight of campaigns at a glance. Direct mail shares the same measurements as its digital counterpart and it can even improve digital marketing results. Sure digital campaigns can have their impact, but they’re soon forgotten. A follow-up print mail alternative hangs around and can be the one things that converts to purchase. Rather than sending five emails isn’t one direct mail a better use of your time?

Programmatic Direct Mail Marketing
Even the display ad networks and resellers have found it tough of recent years and have had to evolve their strategies to combat ad blockers and decreasing impression rates. Digital advertising and remarketing has now turned to direct mail to convert customers to purchase. With sophisticated algorithms and the ability to track users’ browsing history, products can go from a wish list on the web to a DM flyer in their letterbox the following day. How could your customer possibly resist temptation when something they’ve coveted online comes directly to their hands?

Find out more about Programmatic Mail.

Seamless Synchronisation
Digital marketing is seeing the benefits of direct mail and how it aligns with general marketing objectives. It’s easy to integrate the physical nature of DM with online CRM systems to conduct a more telling and sincere communication with customers and prospects. Nothing beats a birthday card in the post and only DM can convey the emotion to express true gratitude to key customers.

 

Contact First Move today on 01494 539300 or email enquiries@firstmove.co.uk for help with your Direct Mail campaigns.

You might also like to download our Knowledge Guide on ‘The Power of Digital Direct Mail‘.

You might also be interested in the following articles:

Harness the power of digital to execute your direct mail campaigns

Why use Direct Mail within your Marketing Mix?

Key Statistics: Direct Mail vs Email

How Digital Print is changing Direct Mail – Interview with David Leitch

David Leitch

The Xerox Trivor – Interview with David Leitch – Digital Print Manager

Direct Mail has evolved and with First Move recently installing the new Xerox Trivor, A world’s first, we are now at the forefront of digital printing technology.

We interview our very own Digital Print Manager, David Leitch for his insights into the Xerox Trivor printer and how printing technology is changing the face of Direct Mail in today’s digitally focused world.

1. Why should companies take notice of the Xerox Trivor, how does it improve upon the current world of Direct Mail? Speed and Cost. The Trivor is a new era in terms of printing, inkjet has primarily been used for lower quality projects and to reduce costs. Whilst this is important, the addition of quality and the ability to make each sheet of paper totally individual, dramatically increases the options open to users.

2. What impact does the Trivor have on personalisation? The Trivor opens up new avenues of variable data and imagery in one file for customers, enabling you to target specific interests that their customers have expressed an interest in. In the Trivor arena personalisation is not just a name and address but potentially completely individual items of mail. Images and text driven through data analysis of the understanding of your customers buying habits, their likes and dislikes, their location, their proximity to the nearest supplier. In short improved relevancy to the reader of what is of interest to them – every page is unique!

3. EFI RIP what’s that and what’s the benefit to customers? The EFI RIP is where all of the data is collected and processed ready for the Trivor to print. The need to process thousands of pixels (drops) of ink per second requires huge computing power. The rip installed at First Move is the largest ever created by EFI (Xerox’s computing partner) and was shipped from San Francisco direct to High Wycombe. The RIP is the 1st of its kind in the world, its power enables clients to produce multiple image and multi placement of personalisation campaigns specific to each person. The benefit of this power is that it processes the information faster than anything previous.

Xerox Trivor 2400 Inkjet Press

4. How can companies save money when using the Xerox Trivor? Being a single process for print and variable data/images, longer run campaigns are printed in one run, rather than previously, where you would ‘litho’ print and then personalise.

5. How fast can a customer get something mailed using the Trivor and how much faster than the current world is that? As previously mentioned, we have taken a two stage printing exercise and changed it to a one stage. But let’s not be fooled, there are machines out there that can do low volume jobs quickly, what Trivor changes is quality and quantity. Trivor produces 270,000 A4 letters printed in colour both sides in an 8 hour shift.

6. Why should companies interested in Direct Mail speak to First Move? Now, with 2 world 1st installs of the Xerox Trivor and the EFI rip PLUS our understanding of marketing and mailing services as demonstrated in our book Direct Mail 101 (this details the process required to deliver predictable profitable mail campaigns) our ability to assist our clients deliver improved results is unique.  Our achievements in this area have been recently recognised by Xerox and we are proud to have been asked to become part of their worldwide ‘Premier Partners’ programme.

To find out more about the new Xerox Trivor Printer and to establish how Digital Direct Mail can transform your business please contact First Move today on 01494 539300 or fill in our online contact form.

 

Click here to watch our video to see how the Xerox Trivor performs.

You might also like to download our Knowledge Guide on ‘The Power of Digital Direct Mail‘ and find out more about Programmatic Mail.

See our recent blogs on How are digital marketers using Direct Mail? and Why use Direct Mail within your marketing mix?.

 

The Case 4 Direct Mail

 

Case 4 Direct Mail

We present you with our opening statement with evidence to support our client, ‘Direct Mail in the 21st century.’

 

It is our privilege to showcase direct mail in this case before you today.

 

You have heard the digital world explain what it hopes will be proven, but the digital world did not furnish you with all the facts.

 

The digital world has explained that our client was “identified” as an outmoded form of communication, but in fact this supposed allegation is from an entity that has held a grudge against our client for a long time, since 1989 to be accurate, and has made many inconsistent statements about this case.

 

The digital world has explained that our client was found to have an inability to sell products in a digital age, but none of those accusations actually stood up to any factual analysis and our client did have its own compelling responses to make.

 

In fact the response rates were substantially stronger with a longer sales tail than previously assuaged, as well as a shorter sales cycle. These direct responses could so easily have been in the possession of your business.

 

We put it to you, that Direct Mail has evolved and is thriving in the new environment of ‘just-in-time’ marketing, utilising augmented reality and big data, aiding marketeers to deliver highly personalised messages with tangible results from physical items.

 

We would ask you to keep an open mind and review ALL the evidence, and return a verdict of “tell me more about Direct Mail“.  Thank you.

 

#Case4DirectMail

 

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Combining direct mail with digital sees Gtech go from strength to strength

gtech-airrammk2

If you were living in Britain in 2014 there’s a high chance you saw the Gtech AirRAM vacuum cleaner, or even own one. A consumer campaign that achieved a sterling result, it is one of the best integrated campaigns this country has seen in decades. The proposition was simple: a cordless vacuum that rivalled both price and technology of the leading manufacturers and home delivered, it was both back and time-saving. But how did Gtech do it?

The 2014 campaign won a silver DMA award. With a campaign budget of £3m, two thirds of which was allocated to TV advertising, direct mail and online and PR spend accounting for the remainder. Over the promotional period it made 39,000 sales, which generated £14.4 million in revenue and a net profit of £2.9 million. This is an impressive result for a little-known brand and a new entry in the market.

And the detail is even more compelling.

While the star of the campaign was television advertising and possibly the best way to demonstrate the vacuum’s effectiveness, it only had an ROI of 3:1 (£6.5 million sales). The support acts: direct mail, PR and online actually converted better and closed the deal. With a fold-out mailer sent to 700,000 homes, direct mail made half the sales of television with an eighth of the budget. ROI? 5:1. So you can imagine with an increased direct mail budget how much better the sales would have performed on a hugely successful campaign. It’s important to note that there’s a 20% uplift in conversion when direct mail campaigns are integrated, so suck up some knowledge from Gtech’s success and build a campaign to draw your customers in.

Using direct mail as a key part of their integrated direct marketing, they are receiving hundreds of orders a day. Their products range from £150 through to £1,000 in value.

The direct mail return of investment for Gtech is 5:1 and it’s an extra revenue stream that is creating more and more profits and product movement than just press, digital and DRTV alone.

Direct mail has allowed Gtech to build a stronger, bigger and better database with every mailing, and they began with only a data set of 20,000 prospects.

In just over three years this has grown year on year to significant mailings over each seasonal variation with considerable growth planned.

Needless to say, our mailing house worked hard to achieve this success, success based on a brilliant product range, a great price and most importantly integrated campaigning, timed to perfection, to deliver the best results.

Gtech are going from strength to strength and just launched AirRam Mk2 last September.

Gtech work is currently running on our new Xerox Trivor 2400.

If you’d like to discuss your Direct Mail campaigns or to arrange a visit to see the World’s First Trivor printer, please fill in our contact form or call us on 01494 539300.

Digital Semantics of Direct Mail

Digital Semantics of Direct Mail – The language of the way we work

Though they come from the same discipline, direct mail and digital marketing are distant cousins rather than siblings in terms of terminology. They share a vocabulary, though depending on which camp you’re from you could be speaking the language with an accent. Each was founded on similar principles and they’ve since developed to suit the types of results each achieves. An open rate is one medium and means something completely different in the other, and response rates paint a different picture. Confused? We’ve lifted the mystery with our direct mail dictionary for digital natives; your comprehensive guide to the semantics of the world’s most powerful marketing tool.

Digital

Generally digital measurement is focused on the immediate, which lends itself to the nature of its lexicon. Here is a round-up of the most common terms you’ll encounter and in the next section a rundown of how they translate to direct mail.

 

  • Conversion rate: The number of desired actions resulting from email activity. For example, sales transactions, downloads or mailing list sign-ups.

 

  • Bounce rate: It is as it sounds and in either outcome the recipient never sees the email. A hard bounce rate is caused by incorrect email addresses or domain issues; a soft bounce rate is when there’s an issue with delivery such as a full inbox or server issues.

 

  • Deliverability: The measure of an email campaign’s cut-through. You should measure the returned email deliverability (volume of emails sent less the number of bounces) and inbox deliverability (volume of emails delivered to the inbox as opposed to the spam folder or not delivered).

 

  • Average unique open rate: How many emails were opened divided by the number of emails delivered.

 

  • Opt-out: The dreaded enemy; when a recipient opts out of further communications.

 

  • Response rate: The number of actual responses made as a result of the email campaign.

 

Direct Mail

So in terms of semantics, there are subtle differences between the two mediums and these largely depend on the way they’re consumed.

 

  • Conversion rate: In direct mail a conversion rate is the same as a response rate. Sales or information request, both forms of contact mean an interaction with your valuable customer.

 

  • Bounce rate: In direct mail a bounce rate means undelivered mail due to a change of address or a deceased individual. Once they’re gone, they’re gone.

 

  • Deliverability: Deliverability means that your DM is undeliverable all together. The only way to improve this is by improving the quality of your database.

 

  • Average unique open rate: According to Royal Mail the average unique open rate is about 90%. When you know your most of mail is guaranteed to be viewed, digital open rates tend to pale in comparison.

 

  • Opt-out: There’s no need to consider opt-out rates as all clients have opted in in the first place; it’s a legal requirement of all direct mail. Recipients who don’t want to read your mail simply bin it and your database retains its integrity.

 

  • Response rate: The major difference between digital and print, response rates reflect the number of sales or responses to an offer, which in virtually all instances is a sale i.e. conversion rates in digital is a response rate in direct mail.

 

Knowing how to talk the language not only gives you the vocabulary, but helps you establish your authority on the subject. With the right set of tools you can competently recommend direct mail and watch your direct mail response rates explode.

Contact First Move today on 01494 539300 or email enquiries@firstmove.co.uk for help with your Direct Mail campaigns.

You might also be interested in the following articles:

Harness the power of digital to execute your direct mail campaigns

Why use Direct Mail within your Marketing Mix?

Key Statistics: Direct Mail vs Email

 

Direct Mail for younger consumers

How to Get Creative with Direct Mail to Attract Younger Consumers

Younger consumers are excited to receive a piece of direct mail

The term ‘millennial’ is overused and bandied about by everyone who wants a piece of the action. But how do you know if you are actually one? Deny it. It’s not a new concept; youth will always exist and they will make you feel inferior and supremely uncool when trying to speak their vernacular. But maybe you shouldn’t try so hard. Skinny jeans—the things from the Eighties you said you’d never wear again, but almost considered buying last week—have been and fled. And now the Nineties are back with a vengeance. Trend is not isolated solely to fashion: direct mail for young adults is back.

If you want creative direct mail that caters to a younger audience then you have to look at how they consume media. While they spend more time online than on all other media combined, they are 32 per cent more likely to agree that they “trust mail more than information they find on the internet.” That’s telling … and an opportunity. Remember the mail millennials have received predominantly up to now is birthday cards, sometimes filled with cash. So now the mail suddenly isn’t so fun.

Nostalgia rates with millennials as it’s one way they can identify with a brand and each other. Music, fashion and childhood foods are great unifiers because they all remind them of a simpler time. One in which they are able to be themselves without scrutiny and having to pose and curate their lives according to what society dictates, nor the responsibility that comes with paying bills. In fact, according to the Royal Mail MarketReach’s new report, The Life Stages of Mail, it reveals that digitally native young people live at home with Mum and Dad. And that’s something to remember when you appeal to them.

 

Instagram is an illusion

While they’re living the high life online, they’re likely brooding in bedrooms to get that perfect Instagram filter and dodging their families with Lana del Rey and Banks blaring in the background. But it’s when they’re at home they’re their most vulnerable and unguarded and according to the report,18 per cent more likely than the general population to welcome direct mail and 32 per cent more likely to find it memorable. Herein lies the potential for creative direct mail.

 

Millennials listen to those they trust

If you’re stumped for direct mail ideas or figuring out how best to approach the direct mail design process, take a look at your target’s content and those they follow to truly understand what will resonate. Fashion, music, dining and food trends are the big ones, but don’t forget YouTubers and other online personalities. Millennials want recommendations from those they trust and seek and value their opinions. Become one of those trusted parties and you will see a huge uplift in your campaigns.

 

Understand their visual language

Almost a quarter (23 per cent) of milllenials, or ‘fledglings’ according to the Royal Mail have bought or ordered something as a result of receiving direct mail in the last 12 months and one in three has kept a piece of direct mail for future reference. The latter should govern your direct mail packaging design; it needs to be impactful for their to open it and something they want to keep. Search for direct mail design inspiration in places millennials frequent. Look at the menu in cafés, business cards of places they shop and the typography of websites they browse. These things matter to millennials.

 

Link it to technology

Likewise technology, make sure that it appeals to their online presence and sense of style. Make things look Instagram-worthy so that they share it through their social media channels. Give them an easy opportunity to find out more information and to purchase online, because according to the report, 92 per cent more likely to have used a mobile phone or tablet to respond to mail. Scan the mailer, give them a pURL and make them feel like you’re speaking to them solely.

 

Contact First Move today on 01494 539300 or email enquiries@firstmove.co.uk for help with your Direct Mail campaigns.

You might also be interested in the following articles:

Harness the power of digital to execute your direct mail campaigns

Why use Direct Mail within your Marketing Mix?

Key Statistics: Direct Mail vs Email

Combine Direct Mail and Digital Marketing

How to Combine Direct Mail and Digital Marketing

Direct mail is a much more sophisticated beast than you imagine.

Direct mail climbs new heights with the advancement of digital technology and now, you can take advantage of its potential. It doesn’t require a re-engineering of the way you run your business and marketing, just some tweaks that’ll bolster sales and increase response rates with very little effort.

Citipost Mail put together a study to show how digital integration can change the way you look at direct mail by taking a wider view and more informed approach. Here are those findings:

We already know that direct mail has high response rates: 3.7% from direct mail with a house list and 1% from direct mail and supplied prospect lists. All other forms total less than 1%; mobile, email, social media, paid search and display advertising fade into the distance. And it’s surprising to learn that email and social media are two of the three most popular marketing channels yet, have the lowest rate of response. Direct mail is not as popular but four times as successful as all of them combined.


Social and digital work better with direct mail

These days marketing is never considered in isolation and 44% marketeers use three or more marketing channels for their brands’ campaigns. You too can learn from this initiative and can combine direct mail with digital for even better results. The proof is in its success:

When social network users were sent direct mail, they responded as follows:
• 25% used a coupon
• 19% held onto it for future use
• 15% visited a store
• 10% passed it on
• 9% friend a new product or service

These are impressive results and a great example of how you can merge the offline with the online. Can think of any other ways to replicate that kind of response? Although social media claims to be a great connector, it’s largely impersonal. Direct mail bridges that gap. In fact, 45% of social network users have acted on direct mail they received and 29% who have used a social network in the past 12 months are 29% more likely to be heavy responders to direct mail.


Direct mail increases your total campaign’s effectiveness

When you add direct mail to an email campaign you increase the potential response rate by 26%. That’s huge. And with the capabilities of social media to spread your message to those who weren’t on your prospect list, you can expect that 9% of direct mail responses will be generated via email or social networks.

Direct mail can be used as one component of a multi-faceted campaign. Use various triggers to contact the customer through text, email, app push notifications and inbox messages and work with your postal operator to trigger the action based on the direct mail delivery. They’ll be grateful for the increased volume and have the facilities to realise your direct mail potential as you envisage it.


Track every response and understand it

Tracking direct mail with digital has never been easier and there are numerous ways to make it happen. Use QR codes and pURLs to track online activity and voucher codes to track conversions at various points of sale. To really merge the direct mail and online experience include a NFC chip that with a quick scan, swipe or tap can turn a smartphone into an extension of the mailer—direct mail brought to life. And reporting is even easier with various tools that can monitor social media for brand mentions and to receive more qualitative feedback through comments and commentary.

Direct mail with digital is the future and you can shape what it looks like with your clients and imaginations, just see how Gtech are going from strength to strength here.

Read our case study on how we helped Gtech combine direct mail with digital, resulting in a silver DMA Award and generated £14.4 million in revenue.


Contact First Move today on 01494 539300 or email enquiries@firstmove.co.uk for help with your Direct Mail campaigns.

You might also be interested in the following articles:

Harness the power of digital to execute your direct mail campaigns

Why use Direct Mail within your Marketing Mix?

Key Statistics: Direct Mail vs Email

Direct Mail Postcards

Direct Mail Examples – 4 Great Postcards

Here are some of the best creative direct mail examples that we love!

We love the tactile nature of direct mail; the way your brand or product can get into your customers’ hands, the way it feels more real. Mailing services come in a variety of formats and aren’t restricted to catalogues, letters and trifold leaflets. Printed postcards are one of the simplest and most effective ways to get your message across and keep the costs low for high-yield campaigns. Direct mail postcards are formulaic, so a little creativity goes a long way and gets your campaign noticed. We’ve compiled some of the most imaginative Direct Mail examples to give you some thought-starters when including postcard printing in your next direct mail campaign.

QR Codes & Removable Magnets

QR Codes & Removable Magnets Direct Mail

 

This direct mail postcard has a business card-sized embedded magnet. When the time comes to throw away the mailer, the recipient can put the magnet somewhere to remember the message. Also included is a QR code to make it easy for mobile users to navigate to the website. For your direct mail piece point users to a PURL to merge the digital and the physical seamlessly. Way to get engagement!

  

Clear Imagery

Clear Imagery Direct Mail

 

Clear Imagery Direct Mal

Want to get your prospects’ attention? There’s no need to complicate matters; sometimes simple is best. These examples take clear imagery and isolate them on a colourful neutral background with brief and effective copy. Perfect for special offers or just standing out against all the white envelopes in the letterbox, this postcard is one that can’t be ignored.

 

Veer

 veer

Here is another great direct mail example that gets the recipient involved in the message, and this one gets them moving. In order to reveal the hidden message the postcard had to be exposed to sunlight. This is a real talking point and not only is it a pleasant surprise for the recipient, but they’re likely to show all of their friends and family, and spread your message even further.

 

Indestructible Direct Mail

indestructible-direct-mail

 

Made from synthetic and polyester materials, this postcard is indestructible. In fact, it invites the recipient through personalisation to tear it in two. A clever way to get their attention–twice—and test their strength and patience!

 

Contact First Move today on 01494 539300 or email enquiries@firstmove.co.uk for help with your Direct Mail campaigns. We’d be happy to show you some direct mail examples.

You might also be interested in the following articles:

5 of the most outrageous Direct Mail campaigns

5 inspiring Direct Mail pieces that make you think wow