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I did a quick, very unscientific survey of 25 of my friends. I asked them to put the mail that they do not open or read in a specific trash bag. At the end of one week they gave it to me to be weighed. Guess how much the bag weighed? Remember, most mail is a fraction of an ounce. 63.4.....not ounces....lbs! Something is wrong with this picture! That's like 2 1/2 pounds per person per week! Holy Cow! Also this was a March survey, what if it had been done in November?
Let's get a grip on this absolute waste of paper, ink, money and time! There are some common sense points we need to look at here.
Direct mail, at 2-5%, has a totally unacceptable response rate.
Bad will generation must be factored into the cost of marketing this way. How many people vow never to do business with the company that sends endless streams of junk mail?
The sophistication and alienation of the American consumer will not support this system for much longer. (Did we learn NOTHING from the "Do Not Call" list?)
Moving to e-mail is not the solution! It is much easier for a person to close an email account than it is to move.
If each of my friends got over 2 pounds of junk mail in just one week.. how can you set your important marketing material apart from all those peices of junk mail?
Solutions? Can't think of any? Wait for my next article on April 13th.
Ms Gossland is owner of Lasting Impressions 2 a small business marketing service provider. You can contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org Or visit the website http://www.lastingimpressions2.com
Nieman Journalism Lab at Harvard
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