Tracking Direct Mail

Successful ways to track your direct mail campaign

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To measure the success of your direct mail campaign you need to make sure you have some method of tracking the campaign. The results of the tracking will allow you to measure response rate and ROI. Going one step further, tracking variations within the campaign will allow you to work out which variations are working best and this will have a huge impact on future marketing, not just future direct mail campaigns.

There are a number of ways to track the campaign and we look at a few here:

1. Unique coding

Variable data printing will allow you to create unique codes for a printed campaign. Unique codes might include PURL, unique voucher codes or QR codes. Using variable data printing can be more expensive that traditional printing but the ability to add in the coding can bring long-term benefits. Again, using the unique codes against variables such as the offer, the copy etc will allow you to drive future campaigns.

2. Sales tracking

There are a number of ways to track sales for your direct mail campaign. The main requirement is uniqueness, any of the following methods below can all create effective sales tracking methods:

a)    Unique telephone number – create a telephone number which is specific to a campaign and then measure the number of enquiries. The number could be mobile or landline. In the case of a mobile number another contact opportunity exists through text messaging contact

b)    Unique postal address/postcode – a very common method to track direct mail campaigns is through a unique postal address / postcode. Although used less frequently now than in the past (due to the advent of the Internet), PO Boxes and unique addresses are still used as a method to track campaign responses

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c)    Unique email address – most campaign recipients will use email, so why not include a unique email address, which if used will prove there is another campaign response

d)    Unique URL – subtly different to a PURL is a campaign specific URL, so a URL which is exclusively for a campaign, whereas a PURL is specific to each recipient. It’s easy to track the number of responses by simply adding a tool like Google Analytics to a website to measure responses per URL, you can also easily gauge sales through this technique too

e)    Unique social media account – there are a number of ways that social media accounts could be used, e.g. a unique account, a specific post and/or a campaign specific #hashtag. Whatever way you choose to go needs to be capable of being tracked later, but social media is configurable to work in multiple ways

3. Free gift

Asking respondents to claim for a free gift is a good way to encourage response and provides its own tracking method.

These are just three tracking methods that can be easily implemented into a campaign and allow for testing of different variations within and across campaigns. Once they have been set up, it is also important to ensure that the data is analysed, and the lessons learned are made available for future campaigns.

Again, make sure the tracking methods are used consistently across the direct mail campaign. For example, use it on a covering letter but not on any accompanying promotional material, support material or envelopes as this can cause the tracking data to be ‘diluted’ and not truly reflect the response rates to any campaign.

Contacting bakergoodchild – the direct mail experts

Implementing these tracking methods will definitely improve the monitoring for your direct mail campaigns. To discuss this or Direct Mail initiatives call bakergoodchild now on 0800 612 1972.


Image Credit: Zair Mail

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