Forget the Headlines — Smart Marketers Stick with Mail
If your only source of news is from the mainstream media, by now you must believe that the U.S. Postal Service is about to go under. Take a look at this “fear mongering” headline from an article appearing in the July 31, 2012 issue of The Sacramento Bee.
The reality is much different.
Sure, a huge number of companies have all but abandoned the direct mail channel in their mad rush to the vastly overcrowded email and social media channels.
But, left alone, the smart folks running the post office would adjust accordingly.
The problem with the post office isn’t gross mismanagement from those in charge. It is gross negligence and mismanagement from its government overseers – those meddlers in Washington with their assorted political agendas.
Meanwhile, the hard-working folks actually doing the work manage to sort and deliver our mail on a timely basis six days a week.
And the speed of mail delivery seems to improve year after year.
Fortunately for the postal service, a large number of really big companies continue to rely on the post office to hand-deliver personalized mail to millions of citizens throughout the country. And most of these citizens still look forward to receiving this mail at home.
I’m one of these people.
One of these really big companies – one owned by Warren Buffett – is GEICO Insurance.
GEICO is a prolific mailer. Almost every month I can count on receiving an offer from GEICO. Here’s the latest offer which arrived yesterday addressed to my spouse.
Take a closer look at the outer envelope – particularly the bold teaser copy and the visual. The Summer Olympics theme is eye-catching. It makes you want to open the envelope to see if the creative team expanded the Olympics theme in the letter.
It worked on me.
Having removed the letter, I was pleasantly surprised to see the introductory paragraph continuing the Olympic theme.
Across the bottom of the first page are six color depictions of the green gecko participating in several Olympic sporting events.
The look and tone of the letter brings a smile to your face and puts you in the mood to consider the offer made by GEICO.
These guys are direct mail professionals.
Obviously, they’re not concerned by all the distracting noise in the media about the Postal Service woes.
All they care about is that the direct mail channel still delivers the mail and delivers the desired inquiries month after month, year after year.
Breaking through the media clutter is always a top-of-mind issue for most marketers. Well, today, the least cluttered delivery channel is traditional direct mail.
It simply boggles my mind that given this fact, so many marketers continue avoiding the postal service while spending precious marketing dollars fighting for attention in today’s most cluttered channels – email and social media.