September 26, 2019

By Karla Fernandez Parker - Senior Marketing Executive, Branding and Advertising

The Yankelovich Multicultural Marketing Study of 2006 revealed that Hispanics were three to five times more likely than the general market to respond to direct mail. Is that still the case now that we are firmly entrenched in the digital age?

It has been 13 years since that study. We know that Hispanics get less mail than the general market due in part to a higher frequency of changing residences. A percentage of the population still rely on cash vs. credit and are generally less “banked” so their personal information is not as prevalent to direct marketers.

According to the ANA/DMA Response Rate Report 2018, two key general market metrics point that direct mail is still working:

  1. The direct mail response rate was 4.9% for prospect lists in 2018. This is significantly higher than in 2017 and the highest since the report started in 2003.
  2. In 2018, the direct mail response rate for house lists was an incredible 9%. This is also the highest number for house lists since the report started and is nearly double from the previous year.

We are seeing great response rates for clients in direct mail efforts, especially in financial services and healthcare, sectors which still rely on direct mail due to more complicated messaging and disclaimers. It’s interesting to note that Hispanics respond strongly to “official-looking mail” that mimics a bill or notice. But we are also seeing great response rates on over-sized post cards that use welcoming imagery, especially among Hispanic seniors who appreciate the larger type size this format offers. These post cards stick out from the rest of the mail stack making them hard to ignore. They offer more area to tell a story and the ability to print with high quality imagery on nicer paper stock.

Marketers should look at direct mail as one more tool in the mix that can even reinforce a digital, broadcast, or social media campaign. When we think about the path to purchase, a timely direct mail piece could be the deciding factor for a campaign, especially with Hispanic Baby Boomers and Gen Xers who still take the mail seriously. In this age of all things digital, marketers should reconsider direct mail. After all, who wouldn’t want to target Hispanics knowing they get less mail and pay attention to what they get!


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