Fortunately, there are a variety of media you can use when putting together a direct mail campaign, and your cost will vary quite a bit depending on what you're looking to send out. Here are some fairly popular examples and a rough idea of what each would cost to print, prep and send.
The cost estimates for each of these is based on 5,000 units:
- Jumbo postcard (the size of half a sheet of paper, 8.5 x 5.5) - $2,000
- Standard letter with return envelope included - $2,500
- Single color standard postcard - $1,750
- 2- color newsletter - $2,200
- Glossy 2-sided self mailer - $2,200
Interestingly, though direct mail is seen by many as a dinosaur still hanging on in the digital age, there is research that states otherwise. Lisa Formica of FMI said in an article in Forbes that, "Direct mail surprisingly transcends the age demographic, with younger consumers (the 18- to 34-year-old demographic) preferring to learn about marketing offers via postal mail rather than online sources, according to national survey research from ICOM."
As far as ROI, despite the plethora of other options for marketing outreach, direct mail's ability to put something physical into people's hands still makes it the most effective. Target Marketing magazine showed that customer acquisition and retention is still direct mail's game to lose, at it outscored all other marketing outreach programs for B2C marketing.
Maybe it's time we all consider the costs and returns of this "dinosaur".
About the author: Amanda Sozak is a contributing writer to several marketing and business related sites around the web including Miami, Florida direct mail provider Ritter's Communication. Learn more about Amanda on G+.