Stop the Personalization Snobbery!
By Heidi Tolliver-Walker on February 25th, 2014
A funny thing happened to me today. I received a postcard in the mail, and I was unbelievably impressed by the targeting. I couldn’t believe how timely and relevant this mailing was.
We are in the process of moving across town, and part of the logistics of selling this home and moving into a new one may require temporary storage of some of our belongings. Just today, in fact, I had been thinking about PODs as the perfect solution to the challenge.
I opened the mailbox this afternoon, and guess what was staring at me? A postcard from PODs! Perfect! How did they know? What algorithms were they using that allowed them to be so precisely targeted — not just in the recipient base but in the timing? I was intrigued. I looked at the mailing label.
“Dear Resident . . .”
I had to laugh. Yesterdays’ blogger Richard Romano has called this “serendipity marketing.” Others call it “spray and pray.”
While we like to be personalization snobs, you know what? Sometimes it works. When using programs like the USPS’s Every Door Direct Mail (EDDM) program, it’s also dirt cheap. It would only take rental of two or three PODs in the entire township to cover the postage and printing of this mailing. Anything else is a bonus.
While we promote personalized, relevance-based print marketing, it’s important to remember that undifferentiated direct mail works, too. There is a reason direct mail has been the bedrock of direct marketing for decades . . . even before personalized printing came to town.