Direct Mail Marketing: How Much Does Direct Mail Cost?
When you send direct mail pieces to your prospects, you tend to sell 28% more products than other marketing techniques. Hence, it increases your ROI considerably.
However, the primary question that remains is how much direct mail costs to the marketers? To answer this question, you may need to consider several sections. Plus, depending on your business type, mailing list’s size, and the quality of your direct mail campaign, the cost may vary significantly.
Several things that decide your direct mail cost are graphics, copy, type of the collateral, printing, personalization, number of direct mails, and shipping. Some companies handle design and copywriting in-house to reduce the cost. However, other companies hire professionals to do it for them. The latter option may cost more in the beginning but provide better chances of good revenue generation.
Once you’ve added all direct mail elements’ expenses, you can expect your direct mail to cost you anywhere between $0.03 – $3.00 per piece. You can also measure your cost per thousand direct mails sent, commonly known as cost per thousand (CPM). It makes the process of analyzing the cost easier.
All you have to do is determine your direct mail pieces’ total cost and divide it by 1000. This method is also recommended to calculate the price because most vendors provide you with a quote in this format.
The number of your mail pieces has a significant role in deciding the overall cost of your campaign. If you want to decrease your direct marketing cost, consider sending direct mail pieces in bulk.
In this guide, we’ll discuss the various elements that affect the cost of your direct mail campaign. By choosing and deciding the quality and size of these elements, you can regulate your direct marketing cost accordingly.
Direct Mail Design Charges
Depending on your direct mail design, it can cost you up to $1000, starting from $10 per direct mail campaign. This vast difference in the price usually depends on your choice of designer and the collaterals you’ll use in your direct mail campaign. Plus, the content, graphics, images, etc., also matters.
Additionally, the major cost difference is caused by the person who’ll design your direct mail. For example, you can either get a company to create your mail sample, an expert with tons of experience, a new freelance designer, or someone with designing skills in your company.
However, that’s not all. You can also design your direct mails yourself using templates. Let’s find out how these different options can alter your design cost.
1. In-House Designing
If someone is designing your postcard or letters in-house, you can expect that the upfront cost will be almost zero. Hence, it is the most economical option, especially if you have to design invoices or billing statements.
In addition to that, if you frequently launch direct mail campaigns, then you should consider hiring a professional designer for the company. This way, you can save a lot more than paying per design, get things done in less time, and get it edited just like you want it and as many times as you wish.
However, one disadvantage of this method is that your direct mail design may or may not be professional if you hire a cost-effective person with not that much experience or get it created by a non-professional staff member in-house.
After in-house designing, the next most economical option for your designs is templates. You can find various direct mail templates online, and some even cost no more than $10.
Using this option, you can design your direct mail instantly and easily. Most such templates are designed by professionals so that you can display your brand’s image via well-performing artworks.
3. Hiring a Professional
If your company launches regular direct marketing campaigns and needs complex designs for each of your mailpieces, consider hiring an expert. It may cost you a bit more than the above two options, but the outcome would be great depending on your design and copy combined.
You can expect to pay anywhere between $100 to $2000. Mainly, designing agencies cost more, so if you’re just starting, you can also consider hiring a freelance designer with just the right experience.
Direct Mail Copywriting Charges
Copy of your mailpiece is as essential as your designs. After catching your prospects’ attention, if you fail to deliver the message just the way they want to listen to it, it’ll all go in vain.
Just like designs, you can write your copy in-house or get it done by a professional. But since most of your return depends on this part of direct mail, we recommend hiring an expert.
If your copy fails to engage your prospects and get them to take action, then the whole campaign will go in vain.
The rates of copywriting also vary greatly. Depending on the experience and the result your copywriter is promising, you can expect to pay anywhere between $20 to $2000.
And it may seem like a big deal to you right now, but when the results start to show up, you realize it was worth this investment. For example, if you paid $1000 for the copy of one of your direct mail campaigns and generated a great client base, you know it was worth it. And once you get a taste of it, you’ll never settle for less.
However, if currently, you’re a startup, a one-person micro business, or just low on budget, you can consider hiring a freelance copywriter. If you’re willing to do it yourself – making the copywriting cost to zero – then follow a few simple tips like:
- Always mention benefits than stating the features of your products or services.
- Make it all about them.
- Never try to sell. Instead, explain your customers’ problems and provide them with a solution—your product/services.
Direct Mail Lists Charges
Your mailing list vastly depends on what you want to acquire. For example, if you want to launch a new product and market it to your existing customers, your in-house or already built mailing list will work just fine.
However, if you’re just starting out or you want to expand your customer or client base by offering a different type of product or service, then you can consider buying a new mailing list.
To get the new mailing list, you’d need to do market research and study your buyer persona. Then depending on your customers’ demographic details, you can buy a mailing list.
The rates of mailing lists differ. For example, some vendors may offer you the list at $30 per 1000. The charges vary depending on the number of times you want to use that list, the value it’s delivering to your business, and what quality clients it is providing.
The best option for acquiring a mailing list, which we mostly recommend at PostGrid, is building one of your own. It can be beneficial for you in many ways. For example, it will be the most specific. The prospects’ details that you have here are the ones that have already interacted with you before. Hence they know at least a little, if not much, about you.
PostGrid helps you integrate your CRM and fetch all of your mailing list data within seconds.
Additionally, how much these mailing lists cost mainly depends on the kind of mailing list you want for your company. For example, the general residential mailing lists formulating the demographic details are comparatively cheaper than the business mailing lists.
You can either rent or buy them, depending on your current need. The charges differ from vendor to vendor, yet you can expect to pay anywhere near $0.03 per record, that is $30 per 1000 records, for the residential mailing list and $0.46 per account, which is $46 per 1000 people for a business mailing list.
Direct Mail Format Charges
Your direct mail can cost you differently depending on the format and size you choose for it. For example, most companies try to keep their mail pieces slightly bigger to stand out in prospects’ mailboxes.
Now, if you choose a smaller mailer, then naturally, the cost will be lower. Apart from that, several other elements, like personalization and customization, can also change your mailpieces’ price. And if you’re doing all the tasks manually in-house, you may also need more printing supplies for a bigger direct mail than a smaller one.
Besides, you’d also need to consider the quality of your printing supplies. For example, what kind of paper would you want to use for your letters, the white glossy one, matte, off-white, or how thick it would be. Plus, most businesses also use different material types – other than paper – to print their message.
This method helps them stand out from the other mailers present in the prospects’ mailbox and increases brand awareness. Like, if you receive a beautiful postcard delivering a message written on a metal or wooden card, you’re more likely to keep it on your table or refrigerator than throwing it off.
Now your visitors may notice it, as at the bottom of the card, the company decided to leave their logo or website details.
But again, you might want to consider the shipping charges of Royal Mail, and that’s per weight.
Direct Mail Personalization Charges
Over the years, everything has evolved, including marketing, which means personalization isn’t an option anymore. If you want good results, you better personalize each of your direct marketing campaigns.
With so much advertising around us, it’s hard to keep the prospects engaged to what you have to say. But if you try a personal approach and try to let them know you already know them, their likes, their problems, and how your product can help them solve those problems.
Although it can be cheaper to send generic direct mail pieces to your prospects, the results you’ll receive will vary considerably.
But personalization can also help you track your direct mail campaigns and increase your response rate. For example, if you add a personalized URL, it’ll be easier for people to visit your website.
To personalize your direct mail, you can either go for variable data printing (VDP), but it would be a little expensive. The other option is an automated PostGrid API that you can use to fetch tons of your data just by integrating your CRM or other systems. Then you can use it to personalize each of your direct mail pieces with the various details of your prospects.
Direct Mail Printing Charges
One significant element that changes the entire cost of your direct mail marketing is printing. The starting per piece printing price is $0.05, going up to $2.00 per piece. But more or less, it depends on the printing vendors and different printing labs that may charge differently.
Apart from this, it’s not the only option you can use to print your mail pieces. You can also get it done in-house. However, if you decide to print all of your mailpieces within your firm, get ready for the extra time and resources you may need to put into it.
For example, besides bringing the big printing machines and hiring staff to print and manage the other task, you’ll also need to invest in the printing supplies. For example, the cartridges, paper stock, colour, envelopes, labels, etc., and then you’ll need a separate space in the office to keep them and continually manage them so that you never run out of the stocks when you need it.
So it’s a lot of work. Plus, once your printing is done, you’d also need to label, fold, and sort them. Then ship those direct mail pieces in bulk.
Another better and easier option is automation API, like PostGrid. It allows you to manage everything from a single dashboard and just give the command to print and send after selecting the quantity and other necessary details.
Once you’ve completed this step, we’ll get your mail pieces printed and shipped within two business days. This way, you save time, resources, and a lot of effort that might go into keeping the stocks, hiring staff, and managing tasks and people. Plus, it’s also cost-effective.
Direct Mail Postage Charges
After printing, postage charges will add the most to your direct mail marketing cost. Although it mainly depends on your particular mail piece’s weight and the distance you have to send those letters to, priority processing can hike the charges.
If you want to decrease your shipping charges, you should go for Royal Mail. Other mail services can be a little more expensive for you.
The rates of Royal Mail start from 85p for the regular delivery of a 100g package. From there on, the postal service offers first-class, second-class, special, international, and next-day deliveries.
Plus, they also provide a payback if they lose any of your direct mails depending on the weight and the category you sent it in. Here’s a list of shipping charges of Royal Mail for all the categories.
How Automation Can Help Drop These Charges Significantly
You can launch direct mail marketing campaigns regularly and head-ache free. You can send direct mails just like emails, including the triggered mails.
All you have to do is integrate PostGrid API with your CRM or other systems, and you can control all of your direct mail marketing campaigns entirely from a single dashboard. From designing your mail pieces to printing and mailing them, it’ll all be our responsibility.
Plus, you will not even need to calculate the charges of everything like design, copywriting, printing, and shipping. We’ll do it all for you and send you the invoice as you prefer to receive it.
With PostGrid automation API, you can save tons of hours, resources, staff, efforts, and money. We also provide an address validation feature, free of cost, with the API. This way, the data of your mailing list is checked against the official database of Royal Mail and is updated each time after a campaign launch.
Hence, you save the money you might otherwise spend on the direct mail pieces sent to the wrong addresses resulting in the loss of confidential information if it’s not a direct marketing mail.
Plus, sometimes your database contains duplicate address listings. That way, you can send identical direct mail to a single prospect twice or thrice. Depending on the number of the same addresses present in your system, your misspending can be excessive.
PostGrid helps you reduce the cost of your direct mail campaigns, the time and effort you put into it and increase your response and conversion rate.