Yesterday we spent a few hours listening to a number of speakers at a conference on DM, this conference was attended by agencies and clients and they all went away with a positive message – yes, email and online is important and will continue to grow in importance, yes, DM and offline lost their way for a while as both had to rediscover what made them important as channels, but now the role of both is seen as important and valuable by customers and marketers alike.
What we heard
The conclusion is that this year’s fast.MAP/ IPM Marketing GAP Tracker provides a spark of marketing joy in the midst of the seemingly endless stream of global financial gloom.
Many of last year’s trends continue – and almost all of them are good.
The percentage of those who open direct mail has reached an all-time high and each year the minority who throw away mail unopened shrinks.
The popularity pendulum which swings slightly towards email one year and back to mail the next is poised between the two; and although it is still only a tiny minority of consumers who prefer to be contacted by landline, mobile, SMS, Twitter or social media, that minority has at last begun to grow.
Almost everyone redeems some of the coupons they receive and each year people become less likely to misredeem them.
Fewer people “always” tick the opt-out box and more donors are prepared to reveal how much they give to charity.
What’s more, the GAP, between some types of consumer activity and opinion and marketers’ expectations of what that behaviour will be, has begun to narrow.
Certainly, marketers seem more in tune with the rankings of the mechanisms and motivations which people use, identifying the most and least popular – even where the percentages they hazard continue to fall wide of the mark.
It seems that marketers are rising to the tough challenges of a sluggish marketplace and consumers are more willing to make the most of any marketing opportunities on offer.