On its face, this statement about direct mail is true.
When you consider the cost of paper, printing, assembly and postage for Direct mail, you obviously have more costs than eMail. And, while the costs of creative (copywriting and artwork) might be comparable, you have an additional cost for Direct mail when mailing to non-customers that becomes somewhat murky for eMail, where the availability of reliable lists are extremely limited. This has significant ramifications for the advertising strategy . . . but, more on this later.
But look more closely and you’ll see that . . .
On examination, this statement about expense is ridiculous.
The point: You don’t care about the cost of your mailing!
Cost is only relevant when you know the value of a responses and what the likely response rate will be for your mailing.
And, if you think Direct Mail is expensive, consider the cost of a 30-second spot on the Super Bowl. Yes, if it’s clever or entertaining enough, people may be talking about it . . . at least for some short period of time. It may even be worthy of going viral on YouTube. But does that ad sell any product or elicit any kind of response? More often than not the answer is “No.” But Super Bowl ads aren’t meant to provoke a direct response. The rationale behind them is branding, image, “top-of-mind” retention or (God forbid) pure entertainment.
We only create Direct Response campaigns. This means that our Ads, Direct Mail and Internet campaigns all are designed to elicit direct results. That is our expertise and, as a rule, we generally don’t create or comment on general advertising or on its relative costs.
But the comment about Direct Mail being more expensive than eMail simply can’t go unchallenged!