Millennials and direct marketing… all you need to know
Millennials have been dominating the demographic conversation for close to a decade now, so as the last of the millennials work their way into the adult population, their daily behaviours and engagement with businesses both online and offline are set to change the nature of direct marketing. In the US alone, millennials are predicted to have up to $200 billion buying power in 2017, meaning that marketers need to adapt to the best methods of communication with this audience; the first digitally native generation.
For the baby boomers and generation X (well into their adult life by the time they received their first email), traditional forms of direct marketing can seem less relevant to online alternatives. However, the opposite can be said for millennials. The average office-working millennial receives 121 emails every day, in contrast, they receive a handful of items through the post per month (there are no confirmed figures on this, but a quick poll around the office indicates around one item a week). A well targeted, well-designed piece of direct mail can resonate with its recipient in a way an email cannot. Something tangible can be a pleasant change for the retinas as opposed to words on a screen.
When you read through your emails, you’re probably sitting at a desk staring at a screen with an inbox of 325 unread messages. You’re busy, you’re stressed and frankly, you have better things to do. When you sort through your post, you’re probably far more relaxed, willing to spend a moment or two reading and likely more susceptible to the message you’re reading.
The Centre for Experimental Consumer Psychology at Bangor University recently conducted an experiment using an MRI while presenting participants with digital and physical advertisements. The results showed that printed materials not only make a deeper impression but are also perceived as more genuine.
A recent study by InfoTrends and Prinova which surveyed a group of 18-66 year olds and their mail habits showed that 63% of Millennials who responded to a direct mail piece within a three month period actually made a purchase.
Overall, the research from InfoTrends affirms several key points when it comes to how direct mail influences consumer purchasing behaviours. The result: Direct mail is frequently read by all demographic groups, including digitally adept Millennials.
With results like this it’s no wonder almost two-thirds of marketers report they are attempting to coordinate direct mail with other marketing activities. It’s clear that when marketing to millennials, an integrated, multi-channel approach is what works.