If you’re not using direct mail for reactivation, you’re missing a major opportunity. As the top performing direct response channel, direct mail isn’t just for acquisition anymore—postcards can actually help you win back former customers.
We’ve seen direct mail reactivation campaigns yield 18% redemption rates and a 60% lift in revenue. When is the last time you got results like that from an email campaign?
Up against increasingly crowded email inboxes, marketers should send targeted postcards to win back customers. It works.
Here are five ways to use direct mail to reactivate customers.
1. Segment direct mail audiences based on purchase history.
Identifying target segments is Step 1 in your direct mail reactivation campaign. What time frame makes someone ripe for a reactivation mailer? One month? One year? Once you decide how to categorize dormant customers, create a few segments based on purchase history. This allows you to craft different postcard messages for each stage of the retention/reactivation journey. For example, you might not send the same aggressive promotion to existing customers who could spend more as to customers who’ve lapsed.
Inkit integrates with top CRMS (including our newest partner, Iterable), allowing you to plug direct mail triggers into automated marketing workflows.
2. Invest in direct mail where it counts by syncing mailers with email workflows.
One of the most cost-effective ways to send reactivation postcards is to add triggers to email campaigns. Using one of Inkit’s integration partners, add direct mail triggers when your reactivation emails don’t get opens/clicks/responses. This strategy has several benefits: it reserves your direct mail budget for the right audience; moves disengaged customers into direct mail workflows (protecting email deliverability); and saves creative resources by repurposing email promotions for postcards.
Pro tip: What works in email doesn’t always work in direct mail. Check out these tips on how to design an effective postcard promotion.
3. Send reactivation postcards to remind inactive customers of store credit.
Customers lapse for a variety of reasons. Some may defect to a competitor with better pricing. Others will find your product no longer suits their needs or simply shift focus. Despite a variety of reasons for churn, most dormant customers have one thing in common: they don’t want to leave money on the table.
When a customer reaches an early dormancy benchmark, send a postcard encouraging them to spend unused rewards or store credit. If they remain inactive, sweeten the deal with a postcard offering a bonus to redeem the credit. A strong offer such as this is likely to have a high impact via postcard, since the majority of Americans open their mail daily.
For example, NatureBox received a 35% lift in orders and a 60% lift in revenue per customer (measuring against a holdout group) when they sent the promotion below, using Inkit’s direct mail software.
4. Don’t just reactivate customers with direct mail. Add value to existing relationships.
A strong direct mail win-back campaign should do more than reactivate customers. It should market to dormant customers, increasing engagement and revenue per customer. When creating content for reactivation mailers, think about what you can offer to increase average order size and engagement. Consider sending postcards that promote complementary items matching purchase history, and/or draw customers deeper into your online customer journey. Plug free online value-adds (like tutorials, informational or user-generated content) with QR codes or links to social media and video landing pages.
5. Split-test direct mail reactivation offers.
Direct mail is the best performing direct response channel (bringing in results 10 to 30 times better than digital), but not all your former customers are going to reactivate at the same rate. Test your most recent inactives and your offers to find which segments and triggers are most cost-effective when it comes to direct mail reactivation. You should find that some of your segments still respond well to email, while others have surely disengaged from your digital communications entirely. Test, test and test some more to find out when and how you can reach various audiences.
Inkit modernized direct mail, making it measurable, testable (find direct mail A/B test tips here) and data-driven. We are always working on adding CRM integrations so that your direct mail can be just as trackable as any digital-only campaign—with the higher impact and response rates of tangible mail.
Are you ready to reactivate your lapsed customers with direct mail? Click here to get started with Inkit for free.