November 21, 2017

45 facts you should know about direct mail

Everyone in marketing likes a statistic or two, so we thought 45 may be statistically enough to demonstrate some of the ‘must know’ facts surrounding direct mail!

Written by Nilda Cerna, Marketing Manager at Romax.

Mail addresses

  1. 30% of people are less likely to open a piece of mail if their name is spelt incorrectly1
  2. 51% of people are less likely to open a piece of mail if it is addressed it to “the occupier1
  3. 31% of people are less likely to open a piece of mail if they don’t know who it is from1

Mail perception

  1. 78% of people consider valuable or interesting,  mail related to retail and 40% of valued mailings combined information and advertising 2
  2. 85% of the useful and/or interesting pieces of mail that were selected by respondents were from brands with which the individual currently had a relationship 2
  3. 60% of people say that mail kept product/service top of mind 2
  4. 58% of people say that mail made them think about using a product or buying from a brand reminded about a brand or company 2
  5. 60% of people say that direct mail reminded them about a brand or company 2
  6. 56% of consumers say mail grabs their attention 3
  7. Mail is seen as a medium of authority, so people still prefer to get bills and statements in a physical form 
  8. Only 28% of people consider receiving direct mail ads of promotion extremely negative, compared with the 76% for telemarketing calls, 63% for pop up online advertisement and 48% for auto-playing online video advertisements. 4

Mail and business

  1. Advertising mail is kept for 17 days on average3
  2. The average response rate for direct mail is 24%2
  3. Direct mail holds a 43% share of total retail advertising.4
  4. 43% of people download something from a website as a direct result of receiving direct mail 3
  5. 54% of people engaged with social media as a direct result of receiving direct mail 3
  6. 86% of people connected with business as a direct result of receiving direct mail 3
  7. 87% of people were influenced to make an online purchase as a direct result of receiving direct mail 3
  8. 92% of people driven to online or digital activity as a direct result of receiving direct mail 3
  9. 43% “liked” the mail sender’s Facebook Page3
  10. 24% followed a mail sender on Twitter3
  11. 25% followed the mail sender on other social media sites 3
  12. 36% shared the mail information with friends via social media 3
  13. 50% of people downloaded the mail sender’s app 3
  14. 51% of people in the UK prefer to be contacted by mail and only 35% preferring email when being sent ‘sensitive or confidential account information.5
  15.  40% of direct mail contained a combination of account information and advertising, 35% only account information and 25% only advertising3.

Mail and email

  1. 96% of consumers have unsubscribed from receiving emails. The top reason was the sheer volume of emails they were receiving from a company.3
  2. The average mail response increase to 25% if it is combined with email4
  3. 70% of people say “I feel that I receive too many emails3
  4. 51% of emails are deleted within two seconds3
  5. 63% of people prefer to read brochures and catalogues in printed format compared with the 21% who prefer digital 3
  6. 62% of people prefer a physical welcome pack compared with the 23% who prefer digital format 3
  7. 13% more consumers visited a sender’s website after adding mail to the marketing mix 3
  8. 21% more consumers made a purchase after businesses added mail to the marketing mix 3
  9. 35% more consumers redeemed coupons or vouchers after marketing adding mail to the marketing mix 3

Mail and data management

  1. In 2012-13, 2.3 million households had moved into their current accommodation in the previous 12 months6
  2. There were 499,331 deaths registered in England and Wales in 2012. 7
  3. There are over 5.9 million records on the MPS suppression file – with around 19,000 new records added each month8
  4. 102,000 new businesses were registered in 20129
  5. There were more than 4,500 UK business name changes per month in 201310
  6. In the UK, more than 20 million mailed items are incorrectly addressed every month, costing businesses an estimated £200m to £300m per year11

Mail delivery

  1. 94% of First Class mail arrives next working day12.
  2. 92% of mail through downstream access operators arrives within two working days12
  3. 99% of Second Class mail arrives within three working days12
  4. 96% of Economy class arrives within four working days12

Romax Marketing & Distribution, a Greenwich-London based company, provides a wide range of services in Direct Marketing for B2B and B2CDirect Mail, Data Management, Printing, Discount Postage and Membership Communication Services and Consultancy. 

Contact us:, +44 (0) 20 8293 8550


    1. BMRB Research 2011, sponsored by Royal Mail
    2. The Private life of Mail, Royal Mail MarketReach, 2015
    3. It’s all about Mail and Email, Royal Mail MarketReach, 2014
    4. HubSpot Global Interruptive Ads Survey Q4 2015 – Q1 2016
    5. Mail in Uncertain Times, Royal Mail Reach Market study, August 2017
    6. English Housing Survey Headline Report 2012-13
    7. Office of National Statistics
    9. Department for Business Innovation and Skills
    10. Companies House – Statistical tables on companies’ registration activities 2012-13
    11. DMA/Axiom whitepaper Reaching more consumers with certainty, 2011
    12. Advertising mail guide, DMA, 2017

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