Direct Mail

Programmatic Direct Mail Marketing

By 31 July 2023April 15th, 2024No Comments
programmatic direct mail

Programmatic Direct Mail

Marketers are always on the lookout for new and better ways to market their products or services. But, the problem with this is that every marketer often ends up looking for it in the same places. As a result, it is nearly impossible to develop a marketing strategy that is new or rarely used in the market.

It is not surprising that every new marketing strategy that is popular today is based on digital platforms. Social media marketing, content marketing, etc., are examples of marketing strategies that every marketer has flocked to.

programmatic direct mail

However, digital marketing is a highly competitive field, and your company can hardly stand out with the same old approach. On the other hand, old-school marketing channels like direct mail are making a solid comeback.

Such a comeback is possible in today's digitally dominated world because modern technology aids direct mail campaigns. In this approach, we combine direct mail with modern technology and it is called “Programmatic Direct Mail”.

It might be confusing to see the words programmatic and direct mail together in a term like that. However, programmatic direct mail is a game-changer for direct mail campaigns. It comes with automation and other capabilities that you have never seen before in direct mail.

Here, we will elaborate on this new and advanced marketing tool. So keep reading to understand what programmatic direct mail is and how it can help your business. We will also highlight the advanced capabilities of programmatic mailing and how you can make the most out of its powerful capabilities.

What is Programmatic Direct Mail?

Programmatic direct mail marketing is an advanced marketing methodology that combines digital and direct mail via automation. But does that mean that every programmatic direct mail system has the same capabilities? Well, not necessarily. 

The capabilities of Programmatic mailing can vary based on how sophisticated the system you are using. Therefore, the programmatic direct mail you use may have limited automation abilities. Hence, you may only automate parts of your direct mail campaign.

However, you'd be wrong if you think the only thing programmatic mailing is good for is automation. Also, it allows you to access data and insights from online and offline digital mediums. You may then use this data and insights to enhance your customer experience. Furthermore, it is also ideal for boosting your company's return on ad spend or ROAS.

Combine Direct Mail With Your Existing Marketing Strategy

Being able to combine your direct mail with your existing marketing strategies is a blessing for marketers. Why? Because we live in a time and age where people are overwhelmed by their interactions on digital platforms.

Consider this, When was the last time that you read a marketing email? Some of you might have even abandoned an email address because it is easier than unsubscribing all the subscribed emails manually.

Hence, people are more likely to enjoy receiving direct mail than an email that they can ignore forever. Furthermore, direct mail has a higher open/response rate than almost all advanced digital marketing strategies.

Direct Mail Response Rate

As we have mentioned above, direct mail has an excellent response rate. Would you instead use a traditional approach that gives you more results or a modern system that is more convenient? Of course, a marketer or business owner would always go for better results, even if it means doing some extra work.

That being said, programmatic printing and mailing take away the need to do this extra work for your direct mail campaign. So, in other words, you get the best of both worlds. Now let's look at the table below to see exactly how beneficial direct mail can be for your business.

Mail Type Response Rate
First-Class Mail 13%
Standard Mail  11%

Create an Emotional Impact With Direct Mail

Do you remember the very first time you opened an email? Most of us were so excited by the internet and email when it was first launched. So many of us watched in awe as the email was sent and received in a matter of seconds. But, now the times have changed, and even a newborn baby is now tech-savvy.

You can not excite them with an email or GIF. A direct mail like a Postcard, on the other hand, is something you don't see anymore. Most millennials are taken aback by a nostalgic feeling upon receiving a postcard or a letter. 

Today, emails have become mundane and boring, whereas direct mail stirs up emotions in the recipients. As a marketer, you should also remember that conversions or sales are more likely to happen if the prospect decides based on their feelings. 

Automate Everything!

With an advanced programmatic direct mail service, you can automate everything in your direct mail campaign. Moreover, the automation capability is so advanced that you get the same level of automation you'd expect from a digital campaign.

It means you can automate everything from personalization to printing to the delivery of your marketing mail. So, it not only saves you a lot of time but also takes away any chance of manual errors. You can even schedule the mail to happen based on the prospect's behavior on your website.

Similarly, you can schedule to send direct mail periodically. So, you can easily use a programmatic print and mail service for sending monthly bills or invoices. The scope of programmatic direct mail is so immense that your imagination is the only limit to its applicational uses.

Also Read: Integrated Direct Mail Campaign

Programmatic Direct Mail Marketing Vs. Traditional Direct Mail

You can't understand how exceptional programmatic direct mail marketing is unless you compare it against traditional direct mail. A programmatic printing and mailing service automates almost all processes you can see in direct mail.

Some of the primary operations that you can automate through programmatic direct mail include

  • Creating a list of high-potential targets
  • Designing the mailer
  • Personalizing the mailer
  • Printing the mailer
  • Sending the mailer

But, remember that the programmatic direct mail automation capabilities are not limited to the list above. There are several other manual processes in direct mail that you can easily automate using programmatic direct mail.

Get The Best of Two Worlds: Combine Physical And Digital Marketing Activities

Do you know what's really cool about using programmatic direct mail? It lets you integrate your direct mail campaigns with your other digital marketing campaigns.

Using Direct Mail For Sending Abandoned Cart Reminders

Imagine that a customer goes to your online store and searches for a product/service. Suppose the customer went as far as to add the said product to their cart.

But then, the customer does not complete the checkout process and abandons the cart. Now, all businesses are familiar with the old abandoned cart situation.

What usually happens after a customer abandons their cart is that the business sends them an automated email. Usually, it sends a computerized Email after one day and then another reminder after three days.

However, with programmatic direct mail, you can throw the direct mail into the mix. The reason why the customer did not respond to your Emails might be that they never read it. Sending direct mail a week after cart abandonment could be the push the customer needs to complete the purchase.

Direct mail is not easy to ignore, like Emails, and if the customer has the intention to buy, then receiving the mailer will do the trick. Similarly, you can smartly incorporate direct mail API across your various digital marketing campaigns to get the best results.

Efficiently Run And Manage Bulk Mail Campaigns

It is no secret that sending direct mail is a lot of work, even if it is just a single one. Think about all the times that you have tried sending a Christmas card to someone. You have to write a personal message, write up the address, and ensure the address format is correct.

Furthermore, you will also have to find the correct postage charge and ensure that you send the mail early enough to reach the addressee on time. You can imagine how stressful it can be to do this for hundreds or thousands of direct mail.

So, it's not so hard to see that traditional mail can't possibly keep up with a business's direct mail requirements. Therefore, it only makes sense to bypass all the complex manual processes using programmatic printing and mailing.

Also Read: Best Direct Mail Marketing Companies – Top 16 Companies Reviewed

Enforce Programmatic Direct Mail Marketing Via Direct Mail Automation Tool

We know that programmatic direct mail is an automated marketing method. You can use it to send direct mail to prospective customers. But, how do you enable such a feature for your business?

To do that, you need to integrate a robust direct mail automation tool like PostGrid and enforce programmatic direct mail marketing. A few years ago, marketers had to develop a custom solution for implementing programmatic direct mail marketing. But today, marketers can use single-line code to accomplish this.

It is a massive relief that we now have easy access to powerful direct mail automation service providers. You don't have to create a custom program for programmatic direct mail marketing, thanks to direct mail automation.

Now, direct mail automation service providers like PostGrid provide you with a single-line code. It makes integrating PostGrid's API a relatively easy task for you. Furthermore, robust software such as PostGrid offers a holistic solution for all your direct mail needs.

Listed below are some of the additional features you can get from a direct mail automation solution.

Validate The Deliverability of Your Addresses

Modern direct mail automation has features that go well beyond programmatic printing and mailing. Systems like PostGrid even allow you to validate the direct mail addresses to ensure its deliverability.

You can either integrate PostGrid's address validation API with your website or use a web interface. The validation process itself is pretty simple. You can use a simple CSV file containing your address database for the validation process. All you have to do is push the CSV file through PostGrid, and you can bulk-validate the addresses.

PostGrid accesses the USPS's official address database to compare your address against it. Therefore, you can be sure that the addresses returned to you are accurate and reliable. When looking for direct mail automation capabilities, make sure to look for CASS-certified service providers.

The CASS certification implies that the service provider can access the USPS's address database. Hence, you can be sure about the quality of the data you receive.

Integrate Your CRM to Personalize Your Direct Mail

Perhaps the best thing about programmatic direct mail is its ability to be personalized. You can personalize every one of your mail pieces or postcards in a bulk direct mail campaign. And you don't need to know anything that goes behind the curtains because the entire process works on automation.

By integrating a direct mail tool like PostGrid with your CRM, you can use customer data for personalization. For example, you can use a direct mail template and switch the name and address with the customer data from the CRM.

It means there is no need for you to sit for hours trying to print or write personalized letters. Doing the same with a manual process could take hours or even weeks. With a direct mail tool like PostGrid, you can do it in a matter of seconds.

How cool is that?

Unique Marketing Strategies by Integrating With Marketing Automation Software

Businesses are slowly adopting a multichannel or omnichannel marketing approach. Hence, you can't afford to get left behind. It is one thing to automate your direct mail campaign and quite another to incorporate it with your existing digital campaigns.

Hence, it would be best if you didn't settle for low-end direct mail automation tools. Instead, by using an excellent direct mail automation tool like PostGrid, you can integrate it with software like HubSpot, Salesforce, and more. With such integrations in place, you can easily incorporate direct mail into your existing campaigns.

But what does this mean? What exactly can you do to the existing campaigns? Well, for beginners, you can add new touchpoints to the marketing campaigns. However, it is best to start adding touchpoints on the campaigns that are currently doing well.

Why Use Well Doing Digital Campaigns For Injecting Direct Mail Touchpoints?

You might wonder why we told you to incorporate direct mail into your already successful digital campaigns. Well, the answer is simple. By adding additional touchpoints, you increase the conversion rate of a campaign that already has a good ROI.

Apart from that, the new direct mail touchpoint can highlight the message you convey. Furthermore, you can ensure that the message stays on top of the customer's mind by offering a more tangible communication channel.

Should You Include Single or Several Direct Mail Steps?

You can incorporate single or multiple direct mail steps into your existing digital marketing campaigns. The number of direct mails you want to use depends on the nature of your unique marketing strategy. For example, you could first set up the campaign so that the prospect first receives a series of Emails.

Then, if there is no response from the prospect, you can send them a short series of direct mail. Similarly, you can also leverage the open rate of direct mail and send out direct mail first. In this case, it must have a value offering to ensure that the prospect takes the next step.

Combine Direct Mail With Various Marketing Campaigns

At least some of you may think that direct mail can work best when you combine it with Email campaigns. However, that's not always the case. Direct mail campaigns can work in tandem with almost all types of marketing campaigns.

Some of the more popular choices of digital marketing campaigns that you generally see in combination with direct mail campaigns include:

  • PPC or Pay Per Click campaigns
  • Social media marketing
  • Sales cadence

Additionally, adding direct mail touchpoints allows you to get super creative with your campaigns. For example, you can use a simple postcard with pictures or even include a fold-up paper toy. The more unique your campaign, the more likely your target audience will notice and remember your mailer (brand).

Triggered Direct Mail Using Programmatic Direct Mail

At this point, you might have already thought to yourself, how does direct mail provide such a high ROI? After all, direct mail is a physical marketing strategy that uses up resources like paper and ink. So, technically, it should have a much lower ROI, you might wonder.

The primary reason for the significantly high ROI for direct mail campaigns is triggered direct mail. But, many of you may not yet know what triggered mail is, so let us elaborate. A triggered mail is a direct mail that you can automatically send to your customers based on a trigger.

What Can You Use as a Trigger?

You can decide what the trigger for sending the direct mail should be. Usually, the trigger is set on user actions. For example, you can set up a direct mail campaign that automatically initiates whenever the customer purchases a specific product.

Such a direct mail campaign can include an upsell request, a discount code, or an invitation to join your loyalty program. Similarly, you can set up a different direct mail campaign for other triggers. Like when a prospect adds a product to their cart but later abandons it.

Commonly, businesses encounter cart abandonment situations by sending two or three Emails. But generally, these emails can go unnoticed or ignored because the customer may never open them. On the other hand, using direct mail gives a higher open rate. Therefore, the customer is likely to complete the purchase if they had the intention to buy the product.

Triggered Direct Mail For B2B Campaign

Triggered mail is particularly effective for B2B nurturing campaigns because they deliver a lot of content to their customers. Even today, B2B businesses depend on email marketing to reach out to their prospects. It can be product brochures, newsletters, and so on.

However, a better approach is to send direct mail instead of Emails. You can set up the direct mail automation tool to send a mailer every time the prospect asks a question. By doing so, you can send sales material to your B2B prospects with almost no delays. It will also create an impression that yours is a big brand by sending the sales material via postal mail.

Triggered Mail For Retargeting Campaigns

Another great use of triggered mail is in retargeting campaigns. For instance, you can use a direct mail automation system to send direct mail ads to people who visited your website but did not make a purchase. Direct mail is also ideal for businesses like Mortgage, Banking, Finance and also best for sending marketing materials to visitors whose data you have collected.

Automate The Design And Delivery of Your Direct Mail

A massive challenge in a traditional direct mail campaign is minimizing the time it takes to execute. It is also one of the reasons why many marketers shy away from expanding to direct mail campaigns. However, that is no longer the case any more thanks to powerful direct mail automation tools.

Before, even getting the design right for a direct mail campaign took days or even weeks. Traditionally, you would have had to go back and forth due to multiple revisions and pay hourly design costs. But, with a tool like PostGrid, you can get rid of such lengthy processes and run the campaign in a fraction of the time.

Choose From Professionally Designed Templates

All leading direct mail automation tools provide you with several design templates that professional designers create. Furthermore, the interface for designing your direct mail is usually simple and uses a drag-and-drop editor.

So, this way, you can save a ton of time and also minimize your expenses. Of course, you always have the option of using your in-house design team to come up with a design. You can use an existing design for programmatic printing and mailing and even try out different variations of the design.

Safely Package And Ship Your Mailers

The automation offered by programmatic direct mail companies is not limited to design and printing. Most service providers also allow you to package and ship your direct mail. As far as businesses are concerned, it is unlikely that they'd have to send large packages for their marketing campaigns.

A fully automated direct mail solution can personalize, print, and ship your direct mail. Once you set up the automation, you don't even have to turn back because it's all taken care of. However, the role of the automated solution ends (except tracking) when you hand over the mailers to the postal service provider.

Get Advanced Tracking And Analytics Capabilities

With the help of programmatic direct mail, you no longer have to worry about limited tracking and analytics capabilities. Because the programmatic print and mail service likely comes equipped with advanced analytics and tracking features.

With today's capability, you can track detailed campaign matrices for every single prospect you send direct mail. Systematic direct mail tracking leverages the Intelligent Mail Barcode system from the USPS. It allows you to track the delivery of your mail, but that's not all.

Track Your Responses Via PURLs, QR Codes, And More

Programmatic direct mail service also lets you track the response to your direct mail. Today, the tracking of direct mail campaign responses does not use reply cards or even phone calls. Instead, marketers try to drive the recipient to their online landing page or website.

Personalized URLs (PURLs) and QR codes are two of the most popular choices for directing the recipient to an online channel. However, once the recipients reach the landing page or website, you can use the site's existing analytics tools to get deep insights.

Get Better Viewability For Your Direct Mail

Suppose you have seriously considered a direct mail campaign for your business. In that case, you'd know that viewability is a significant concern. But, consider this, a vast number of internet users today use ad blockers. So the viewability of digital campaigns is not up to the mark like it was a few years ago.

Furthermore, there is also the concern of bots. We live in a dog-eat-dog world where competitors drive up your CPC costs by using bots to click ads. Offline marketing methods like programmatic direct mail are the only way to avoid such situations.

When using a direct mail campaign, the biggest concern you have is that the recipient throws away your mailer. However, you can avoid the mailers getting ignored by your prospects with proper planning and targeting.


To sum it up, programmatic direct mail offers one of the best odds of your target audience appreciating your marketing efforts. It simplifies the complex direct mail process and optimizes its performance. However, you need a direct mail automation tool like PostGrid to use the full potential of programmatic direct mail.

A programmatic printing and mailing service like PostGrid lets you overcome every problem in traditional mail. It significantly reduces the time and effort required for running a direct mail campaign. PostGrid's automation involves CRM-based personalization, printing, and shipping.

So, in short, every time-consuming process gets automated, and you save a lot of valuable time. With professionally designed templates and triggered responses, you can run optimized campaigns. You can even incorporate direct mail into your existing digital campaigns without even breaking a sweat.

So, if you are still waiting around for a better time to implement your direct mail campaign, you should get a move on NOW!

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