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Tracking and measuring the results of your direct mail marketing
Tracking and measuring the results of your direct mail marketing

Tracking and measuring the results of your direct mail marketing

Sometimes, marketers are disappointed with the lack of response from their direct mail efforts, and give up all too quickly without knowing which elements let it down. As with any marketing, it is crucial to track and measure your direct mail campaigns in order to calculate your cost per lead, your responses, your return on investment, and to identify how you could improve your future campaigns. Luckily, direct mail is one of the easiest forms of marketing to track and measure.

To calculate your ROI (return on investment), the following formula can be applied:

(quantity mailed x response rate x conversion rate x sales income gross margin) Less (cost of campaign)
Cost of campaign

The cost of the campaign should include the costs of your mailing list, data processing, addressing, printing (including design and copywriting costs), materials, mail fulfilment, and postage.

To establish the source of your responses and conversions, a simple solution is to include varying regional codes, age bracket codes, income bracket codes, promotion codes or coded vouchers, etc.; hence enabling you to target fruitful areas in the future.

As mailing to established customers should produce a better response, it makes sense to maintain a list of established clients, and a separate list of prospects - this will produce a truer picture of your results.
Tracking and measuring the results of your direct mail marketing
Tracking and measuring the results of your direct mail marketing

How to track responses from your calls to action

There are many ways to track responses from your direct mail, such as:

QR codes

Using QR codes that link to designated landing pages as a call to action option in your mail piece, will establish the exact number of resulting visitors to your site.

Unique tracking domains

Including a unique URL or PURL on your mail piece that takes your prospects to a unique landing page is a good option for tracking your campaign.
Telephone and SMS responses
Giving each campaign a unique telephone number, or text number as a call to action, allows you to establish the number of callers or text responses to your campaign.
Reply forms
This is an effective call to action. You could include a coded response form together with a reply envelope, or a coded reply card, within your mail pack. You can read more about this option within our article on Direct Mail Postcards within the "Calls to Action" section.
Email address
Include a designated email address on your mail piece to allow you to track your campaign responses.
How to increase your response rates
  • Ensure your target list is clean, up-to-date, and appropriate
  • Ensure your content is as personalised and relevant as possible
  • Integrate your direct mail campaign with online promotion, a magazine advertisement, or other marketing options
In order to compare the results of one mailing campaign with others, be sure to give each campaign a different code.
Measuring responses from a coded campaign
A couple of weeks after your mailing, apply this formula:

quantity of responses using code
quantity mailed
= response rate
Sending out test campaigns to a control subset of your list lets you see where the "fruit" lies before sending a full-scale mailing. Tests can include:
  • Mailing at different times of the year
  • Sending postcards or different sizes of mailing packs
  • Coloured or plain envelopes
  • Varying the format of your inserts
  • Handwritten letters with hand addressed envelopes and real postage stamps
  • Varying your marketing message
  • Increasing the frequency of mailings
By tracking, testing and measuring results, you will be well on the way to achieving successful direct mail campaigns, and enjoying the fruits of your labour.
Tracking and measuring the results of your direct mail marketing
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