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How Long Should A Direct Mail Letter Be?

direct mail

Direct mail should be a part of every good marketing campaign. This is the message Duffy Marketing consistently delivers to current and prospective clients when it comes to marketing services. That doesn’t mean there can’t be discussions about what makes the best and most effective direct mail campaign.

How Long is Too Long?

Those discussions often start with that question and the almost immediate response in the marketing world is, “The shorter the better.” In fact, many in the marketing services industry insist direct mailing campaigns should never be longer than a single page. Their logic is the recipients just won’t take time to read anything longer. 

Let’s Dive a Little Deeper

Duffy Marketing believes that approach is too simplistic, and the numbers don’t always support the theory. You can find multiple examples of successful companies mailing four-page letters over and over. Do you think they would continue to do that if they weren’t getting good results?

Other Factors Need to be Considered

Every direct mail campaign has to start by answering one basic question: “What are you trying to accomplish?”

  • If the goal is to generate leads (contact information) to add to your database, then a shorter letter that gets right to the point is preferred.
  • If the goal is to generate sales (buy this unit for $XXXX), then the letter should be longer. It makes sense because buyers are going to want more information before they commit to anything. Everything about the sales process should be spelled out.

Demographics Also Matter

  • Age—Always know the target audience of any direct mail campaign. As people get older their children leave home and retirement approaches. If the recipients skew older, the letter can be longer. They will take more time to read. If research shows the neighborhood is mostly young families that’s a good reason to make the letters shorter.
  • Income—Don’t waste time trying to sell “Cadillacs” to people who can’t afford them. If a mailing is going to a modest income neighborhood, focus on “Fords & Chevys”. If you are targeting affluent households, emphasize quality and performance.

WARNING: Always remember demographics are just one tool and you should not fall into stereotypes. When it comes to age and economic status, there can be many exceptions to these guidelines.

Give Us a Call

If you are ready to talk about direct mail marketing services for your business, call Duffy Marketing now to schedule a no-obligation appointment. Be sure to like and follow us on Facebook and Twitter for more great marketing information.