The subject of door-drop marketing has long caused debate amongst those who are determined to decipher and hone the most effective ways of promoting goods or services to the public. There are those who believe it is an archaic, unsophisticated form of marketing which should be obsolete thanks to recent innovation in technology, and there are those who sing its praises as one of the cheapest and most effective ways to reach a broad audience with a simple message. Helen Peach, head of SME at Royal Mail Door to Door, is in the latter camp, and also believes that using technology to create more precise targeting models and audience profiles make using printed flyers or leaflets one of the most versatile ways to reach customers.
According to Ms Peach, a combination of better creative and more responsive customers have helped door-drop marketing play ‘a more prominent role’ in marketing departments in the last few years. The economic climate is forcing companies to look for more budget-friendly ways of reaching out to new audiences, and has resulted in a greater effort to improve the platform by many businesses. When door-drop marketing is done well, it has high success rates, and businesses are slowly closing in on what makes one of these campaigns truly effective.
The benefits of door-drops include allowing companies of all sizes to extend their customer databases, reach new markets, promote products and services and support other promotional activity. Printed leaflets and flyers can be delivered in a multitude of ways, including alongside the regular mail, within free local newspapers, or via a specialist leaflet distributor employed to cover a certain area. Improved software and technology allows businesses to select areas where campaigns are most likely to be well-received, using criteria including average age of homeowners, average number of children and average income.
In recent years, whilst the number of leaflets landing on doormats seems to have decreased, success rates have risen. This could be attributed to the more sophisticated methods of profiling and targeting, and could also be due to a perceived higher quality of printed leaflet. Statistics from the Direct Marketing Association found that volumes of promotional leaflets and flyers fell from 7.6 billion in 2011 to 6.9 billion this year, but enhanced client data meant that new accuracy measures meant that smaller number of flyers can now be just as effective when used in the right areas. Expenditure on this promotional channel remains high amongst many businesses, and many companies still view the medium as one of the most valuable methods of communication with existing customers and potential new ones.