There will probably always be a great debate when it comes to email marketing lists versus direct mail, regarding which of these strategies will work best to connect with a target audience and get their attention. Both are well known and often used methods of developing a target audience, and an email address database, yet each uses a distinctly different method of communicating with the members of that target audience. Some experts go so far as to recommend that you use both when trying to develop an Internet marketing campaign, to get the maximum exposure and build up a strong email list.
The main difference when it comes to using direct mail is that it is far more expensive than using only email marketing list strategies. You have to purchase postcards, pay for printing expenses, pay for postage and then actually get to the post office to send out the mass mailing. Using bulk email after collecting a large number of emails for the email marketing lists is essentially free, except perhaps for the time involved. But, for this discussion, let’s assume that the time invested in either strategy would be approximately equal. This leaves only the monetary differences.
Proponents of the direct mail approach hold strong and fast to the belief that you are going to get more attention when you use direct mail. Email has become so diluted, on many levels, that there are too many people who simply send offers directly to the spam folder. Those same people may possibly leave their paper mail sitting on the counter for a day or so, allowing them multiple opportunities to view your mailing and have your brand become imprinted in their minds.
You have to weigh both the costs and the benefits of using each of these methods, and decide how you want to spend your money when it comes to investing in your email marketing campaign. It may make sense for you to add a direct mailing component to help further develop your target audience and build up your email address database.