How to Segment Your Direct Mail Lists for the Best Results

How to Segment Your Direct Mail Lists

Wondering how you can get more engagement, better responses, and ultimately more sales out of your direct mail campaigns? Learn how to segment your direct mail lists for the best results. 

People are all different. There’s a whole lot that goes into making them unique, too—upbringing, location, career, hobbies, beliefs… The list is almost endless! 

Based on this fact, it makes perfect sense that you can send out the same piece of mail to 100 people, for example, and you might only get 3 or 4 that are actually interested in what you offer. 

So how do you ensure that you’re actually reaching the people who have an interest in your offer? Audience segmentation. Here’s how it works and how to segment your direct mail lists to really target the right people! 

What Is Segmenting Your Lists? 

Marketers—direct mail and email—have a list of prospects or subscribers that they send mail out to. Segmenting your list means creating categories under which to place the people within that list. 

For example, if you put 100 people in a room, your list could be called: People In The Room. But as mentioned above, that’s going to be a whole lot of different people. How do we narrow it down further?

Try splitting it into “Men in the Room” and “Women in the Room”. That’s two segments already! Men and women may view your offering differently, so separating them into segments is a good idea. 

Now let’s try “Over 30s in the Room” and “Under 30s in the Room”. Or “Brunettes in the Room”, “Blondes in the Room”, “Redheads in the Room”, and “No Hair in the Room”. 

Maybe “People in the Room Who Like Sports”, “People in the Room Who Like Music”, “Vegans in the Room”, or “Animal Lovers in the Room”. 

Why Is Segmentation Important? 

If you sell sports supplements, which of the above segments is more likely to be a great target audience for your direct mail campaign? 

You’ll obviously want to aim for people who enjoy sports and play often. Perhaps your supplements are best for the gym, or best for runners. In that case, “People Who Love Sports” won’t be enough. For every runner/gym buff you get, you’ll be getting 10 people who aren’t actually interested or suitable for your product. 

Segmentation helps you to nail down your ideal buyer and send your mail just to them. No wasted paper, no wasted money, and no hope that will never turn into sales! 

How to Segment Your Direct Mail Lists 

Obviously, not all of those groups of people are going to be relevant for what you’re offering. You need to tailor your offer to a particular group of people if you want the highest chance of making sales. 

Here are some tried-and-true segments that marketers often use to target certain groups more specifically. These are good ones to start with, but make sure they serve their purpose for your product, service, or business! 

By Demographic 

Segmenting your list by demographic helps you to nail down the specific needs of certain people and highlight those in your mail. 

In this category, you can split people by: 

  • Age 
  • Gender 
  • Marital status 
  • Occupation 
  • Income 
  • Parenthood 
  • Homeownership 
  • Etc 

Trying to sell children’s toys to a 20-something, single, unemployed person isn’t going to end well for you. But target parents with a good income and you’re far more likely to see success. 

By Location 

Learning how to segment your direst mail lists by location is great for local businesses, brick-and-mortar stores, and so on. Location-based segments are the obvious choice for things like restaurants, beauty salons, and stores that have a physical location. 

But it can be used by others too, if you’re targeting people in a particular zip code, city, or state. Even if you’re blanket-targeting people across a country, you may want to personalise each campaign according to where they are. 

For example, if you’re offering air conditioner repair services, you might want to reference the warm weather in certain areas. But in areas that aren’t as summery at the time, talk about preparing for the upcoming warm weather instead. 

By Interests 

If you’re selling knitting patterns, chances are you don’t want to target teenage boys. In the same vein, if you’re selling video games, you won’t have much success sending mail to 70+ year-olds. 

Splitting your audience by interest is an excellent way of ensuring that they’re already likely to be interested in what you’re offering. 

By Occasion 

If you collect customer birthday info, nothing gives your company a boost by sending out a “Happy Birthday” piece of mail with a small gift

Holidays are also a great time to send out particular mail campaigns, but you’ll need to be a  bit thoughtful here. Wishing everyone a Happy Ramadan is great, but you’ll save yourself money if you segment your list further into religious beliefs. 

Quick tip: If you’re keeping track of purchases, send out a piece of mail on the first anniversary of a person’s first purchase from your brand. It’s unique, memorable, gets people talking (and sharing), and makes them feel special. 

By Buying Behaviour 

These segments may be a little more advanced, but they can work well. If someone acted on your CTA—for example, made a phone call—but never went further, you can create a segment specifically for those who “abandoned cart”. 

This can win back people who were interested but unsure of taking the next step. Knowing that they’re in this category also means you can tailor your new mail to address their potential concerns. 

By Purchase History 

Follow-up mails with ideas like “Based on your last purchase, we thought you might like X”, or “There’s a new version of X out and we wanted you to be the first to know.” 

Using their past buying experience to influence their current potential buys is an advanced way of segmenting your list, but can be highly effective! 


Learning how to segment your direct mail lists isn’t just for convenience. Ultimately, it saves you from sending mail that will never be read by uninterested people and ensures that you’re only spending money on sending mail to people who already have a high likelihood of becoming a customer or client. 

Unsure of how to do it? Give us a call and ask!

Quick, Easy Ways to Improve Response Rate to Direct Mail Campaigns

ways to improve response rate

Unsure how to drive more responses from your customers when you send out mail? Here are a few quick, easy ways to improve response rate to direct mail campaigns. Try them and let us know how they go! 

Ultimately, the outcome you want from your direct mail campaign is getting people to buy into your product or service. You aren’t just sending love letters! 

You want action. If you aren’t getting it, here are a few quick and easy things you can do to up that response rate. 

Double-Check Your Targets 

One in every 6 Australians move house every year. And more than 160,000 people pass away annually. Which means that if your direct mail database isn’t up to date, you could be sending mail to ghosts! 

Manage your data to prevent double-sends, incorrect addresses that don’t get to your target market, and being ghosted… Literally. 


Nothing catches someone’s attention like their own name on a piece of mail. Don’t just stick it in there and hope for the best, though. Be creative… So it seems like the mail is reeeeally catered to them. 

There are plenty of exciting ways to personalise your mail, though. It’s not just all about a name. Check out this article for a few more ideas! 

Get Creative 

What do you think is more likely to be opened… A boring ol’ rectangular brochure in muted colours, or a funky cut dressed in something eye-catching and bright? 

There are many ways to make your flyer stand out in a crowd. Colour, shape, content… Put something together that’s attractive and entices them to open, read, and remember. 

Give ‘Em A Direct CTA 

Don’t fluff around in your communication. If you don’t tell your reader EXACTLY what you want them to do, you can’t really be upset when you aren’t getting those responses! 

The more direct you can be with your CTA, the better. You need to be direct with your reader and leave them in no doubt as to what to do. 

Direct Them Online 

Here’s a quick tip to improve your engagement and keep that customer engagement going. As part of your CTA (or your full CTA), encourage your readers to interact with you online. 

Whatever social media platform you’re on, get your readers talking to you and you’ve got more opportunity to make a sale. 

A/B Testing 

Comparing two pieces of mail can yield invaluable information. You’ll be able to see at a glance what messaging, colours, style, shape, etc worked better with your target market. 

Take note that this is only really useful if you compare a large volume of mail. 5,000 to 8,000 is usually a decent volume for a single mailing, so you’ll need at least twice as much for an effective A/B test. 


Upping your response rate doesn’t have to be hard. Implementing just a few of these quick, easy ways to improve response rate may be all you need to take your business from blah to booming!

Learn How to Begin Identifying Your Target Audience

Targeting your audience

This article examines how to go about identifying your target audience by using your existing resources.

Gaining a better understanding of who your target audience is will enable you to create a more effective marketing plan; tailored to the needs and motivations of a specific group which will, in turn, help you ratify your existing customer base and create new leads.

It’s all well and good to have quality products and access to the right marketing resources, but without a well-defined idea about who your audience is, your business is unlikely to get too far.

Step 1: Look at your initial business plan

To understand what types of people would want to buy your products and services, it pays to revisit your business plan and look at your core goals, values, and what makes your business unique. From here, think about what kind of person, demographic and situation would benefit from what you offer.

Step 2: Do thorough market research

The next step is to back up this basic understanding of who needs your products and services with more information about who they are likely to be.

There is plenty of secondary research available online which looks into consumer habits and demographics on an industry level, and this can be a good starting point, but to get a really clear idea of who is interested in what you’re selling, digital platforms can often be the most helpful tools.

Two of the most commonly used digital tools for data-driven marketing are Facebook Insights and Google Analytics.

Google Analytics can be used to see the behaviour of traffic on your site as well as details like their location, the type of technology they are using to access your site, and where your converted traffic is coming from.

Facebook Insights can be used to see your audience demographics like age, gender, city and language.

Step 3: Create a customer profile, AKA, persona

A customer profile, also known as a persona, paints a detailed picture of who your typical customer is and includes not only their demographics like gender, age, location, ethnicity, income, and marital status but also psychographic information like how they think, what they value in terms of politics and lifestyle, as well as behavioural patterns.

It’s also useful to understand how your customer shops and what media platforms they most frequently use.

A comprehensive marketing plan will typically have a strategy for 3 to 4 unique customer personas.

Next steps…

Direct Mail Solutions is an established mail house offering specialised data solutions to help you communicate with your target demographic.

Reach Your Target Audiences With direct Pamphlet Distribution

Bulk Mailing

Pamphlet distribution is one of the oldest and most effective methods of direct marketing. Many companies have been using it for a long time and even now in this digital age – pamphlet distribution continues to be incredibly effective.

Pamphlets easily convey your message to your target audience. It’s also a very cost-effective stratgey; unlike many the other forms of advertising.

Even before COVID, people were experiencing ‘digital fatigue’.

We receive a barrage of emails daily, from work to personal subscriptions and sign-ups. So much so that we often resort to mass deletion solely based on the title or description snippet of our emails.

Throw in multiple social media channels with sponsored posts, display ads on websites, even TV, and the onset of this very modern fatigue, seems inevitable.

Of course, Savvy marketers are aware of this, supplementing campaigns with direct mail.

The best thing about pamphlets is how incredibly tangible they are – so get extra creative!

There are few limitations when it comes to pamphlet distribution – show your creativity and let your business standout with unique designs.

One of the major reasons pamphlet distribution is so appealing to customers is because it reminds them of the good old days; that feeling of excitement opening the mailbox to check what’s inside it!

The best pamphlets create curiosity and unlike emails, people aren’t in a rush to trash them.

create a Greater Return During Covid

Every period of adversity and change in the market brings with it, risk. However, it’s common for new business opportunities to occur during a downturn.

Take advantage of the situation – a significantly greater number of people will be working from home now.

Pamphlet distribution is an affordable manner of delivering your goods or services to your potential clients/customers. Selecting the right service is important when it comes to pamphlet distribution since it actually plays a vital function in promoting what your services are.

Next steps…

Are you looking to put together a well-designed pamphlet for your business? 

3 Effective Brochure Marketing Strategies

brochure marketing

Brochure marketing is a tried and true method, but with a little work you can make yours stand out from the crowd! There are so many ways to get your point across, but some of them are wrong. In this week’s article, we’ll be outlining three key ways to make sure your brochure marketing strategy is more effective today.

Understand your audience’s POV

There’s no point in putting together a brochure if it won’t be read. This means that your audience’s point of view is king in the creation stage. Obviously, the content should follow a logical flow, but it should follow the flow that is most relevant to your reader. To understand this, you need to understand the kinds of questions your reader will want answered, and how this process of information will unfold before them. Essentially, your brochure should follow your audience’s train of thought. One of the best ways to do this is to pretend that you are the audience, and think of the kinds of questions you might have in relation to your product, service or business.

Motivate your audience to actually read the brochure

In with the earlier point, a brochure needs to cater to your audience. But before setting out all the information inside, make sure to create a compelling cover so that your audience wants to read on! Consider highlighting the benefits of your product or service, using catchy slogans or adding intriguing imagery. This should be more than just your company’s brand identity- it could include a special discount, free report or exclusive invitation. Just make sure to think outside the box with this one!

Make your brochure something to remember

There’s no better way to create a brochure that stands out than by adding a personal touch. Firstly, make sure the brochure is personal to your audience, and that it caters to their needs by providing some kind of benefit or solution. Secondly, make it personal to you and your brand! Think about changing up the shape, the colour, font choice, imagery use… the list really does go on and on. It’s all about making your brochure marketing stand out.

Direct Mail Solutions offers a range of solutions for your direct mail marketing campaigns.

Print Marketing Fundamentals: Identifying Your Target Market

Targeted audience data

As the core of any successful business strategy, identifying and understanding your target market is essential for your marketing campaign. Aiming to reach a specific subset of the population, and analysing how your product or service meets their needs or wants is a specific skill. In this week’s article, we’re going to be exploring some of the ways you can identify your target market for your next print marketing campaign.

What is a target market?

Referring to a group of people to whom your products or services will appeal, a target market is a specific community within the wider population. Focusing your brand messaging on them will help to streamline productivity and efficiency of resources. Your brand and the products or services you offer should resonate deeply with your target demographic. Understanding this helps you to design your marketing campaigns, using the most effective language and marketing strategies.

Who are your target market?

In identifying a target market, there are certain questions you have to ask about who they are. Using this information, you can build a solid foundation for the marketing campaign for your desired audience. Below, we’ve listed a few factors for you to consider:

  • Demographics: what gender predominantly makes up your target market? What age are they? What level of education do they have? Where do they live, work, or otherwise spend their time? What do they value? What are their lifestyles like?
  • Current customer base: spend time analysing your current customers- what are the similarities among them? By looking for common characteristics, this will help you to understand other potential markets that you may not have tapped into yet.
  • Competitors: much like how you’ve analysed your current customer base, see who your competitors are targeting. This may give you ideas for other avenues for potential customers.

Once you’ve established answers to the factors listed above, evaluate the target market you’ve devised. You may find it is too narrow, and in these cases, there’s nothing wrong with broadening your horizons a little. After identifying your target market, it’s time to begin designing your marketing campaign!

Direct Mail Solutions offers a range of solutions for your direct mail marketing campaigns.

The Benefits of Bulk Mail

Benefits of Bulk Mail

If you need to send out a mass mail order of 500 items or more by post, bulk mail is an efficient tool. It will not only help save time and manpower but also help cut costs. In this week’s blog, we discuss the benefits of bulk mail.  


Bulk mail can be quite an effective way to save money. Depending on the size of your company and mailing service needs, bulk mail can be cheaper than distributing promotional material through a mailing house. If you’re preparing a large-scale event and require hundreds or thousands of leaflets for a specific, target audience, bulk mail can be financially advantageous. Or if you need monthly promotional materials delivered to your target market, bulk mail might be the way to go.  

More specific, impactful targeting 

Another benefits of bulk mail is that that your targeting is more focused and impactful. While email listings can contain thousands of addresses, many of which are not interested in the product or service one is selling, mail houses provide true and up-to-date contact information. Bulk mail therefore allows you to target at the highest level because mail houses are reliable. Having an appropriately targeted database is important as effective targeting is key to any successful marketing strategy. Poor target results in the message being sent to the wrong audience, rendering your whole marketing plan ineffective.  

Increased customer receptivity  

While digital realms provide amazing platforms to reach large numbers of people, they can be highly saturated, calling their effectiveness into question. The extent to which people are truly reading and engaging with marketing messages online is disputed. This is where traditional forms of advertising like bulk mailing stand apart. Mailing services can be more effective as people are more likely to read their email and give their full attention to it as they read.  

At Direct Mail Solutions, we can take care of all your bulk mail needs. We ensure your bulk mail is printed, personalised, packaged and delivered according to your exact specifications.

5 Techniques to Engage your Target Audience

In the 1970s, the average person was exposed to an average of 500 ads a day. In 2017, the number is closer to 5,000. In short, grabbing the attention of your target audience today is 100% more difficult than it was 50 years ago. As a business, overcoming the challenge of audience engagement requires taking a creative approach from marketing and stepping away from the stock standard pitch format. This week, we explore five techniques and approaches you can use to engage your audience.


People love to learn and one of the best ways to lead them to think about your product is by educating them about the challenges it can solve. So instead of leading with the product features, you might lead with a statistic that leads them to think about an issue relating to your product. For example, if you’re selling cleaning equipment, you might lead with a statistic like ‘the kitchen sponge is 200,000 times dirtier than a toilet seat’.


Asking a question is a simple and highly effective way to get your audience to start thinking about a problem and how it can be mitigated with your product or service. Some examples include:

Isn’t it about time you did something with your garden?

How would you feel if your house was broken into?

Are you tired of being overcharged for mechanic work?


Detailing the challenge or problem that your product fixes can be a great way to relate to your target audience and get them thinking about your brand. For example, if you have a house cleaning business, you might begin a flyer pitch by describing how thankless cleaning your own home on a weekly basis can be.  The more specific you can be, the better, so make sure you research your target audience to understand their needs.


Providing your professional opinion about a current news item can be a great way of exposing your target audience to issues they may not be aware of and exercising your brand voice and philosophy.


If you want to strengthen the rapport you have with your existing customer base, one of the best ways you can do so is by offering a ‘how to’ session for your products that provides them with professional tips they might not know about. This could be done either in person with an event or through video.

Direct Mail Solutions specialise in helping Melbourne based businesses manage their direct mail marketing needs.

11 Interesting Statistics About Christmas Consumer Habits in Australia

Over the last few weeks, we’ve been exploring ways you can harness the spike in consumer activity over the pre-Christmas period through catalogue, flyer, and brochure advertising. If you’re a small business owner, your Christmas campaign is no doubt well underway by now, but we thought we’d take a look at some of the statistics floating around out there about the Christmas trading period in Australia this year. On the whole, predictions suggest retailers will enjoy strong Christmas returns this year with another record breaking spending period, so if you’ve invested time and money into a direct mail marketing campaign, you’re probably set to enjoy a good ROI. With Christmas just 11 days away, here are 11 interesting facts and statistics about Australia’s seasonal spending habits.

1. The Australian Retailers Association and Roy Morgan Research have released annual Christmas spending figures suggesting shoppers will be spending $48.1 billion in retail stores over the pre Christmas trading period (November 15 to December 24) this year. This is a 2.3% growth compared to 2015 when sales hit $47 billion.

2. In the 30 days leading up to Christmas, Australians are predicted to spend $4.9 billion online. To put that in perspective, eBay is recording a rate of 6 gifts per second being bought online this week.

3. Due to a falling Australian dollar, The Retail Council predicts that consumer spending will be more local than it has been in previous years.

4. 81% of Australians surveyed by McCrindle Research feel that shops begin their Christmas campaigns too early. 49.1% of those surveyed would like Christmas campaigns to begin in late November or early December.

5. Monday the 12th of December, was the biggest parcel delivery day in Australia’s postal history with more than two million parcels moving through the postal network. There has been a 15.9% growth in online shopping this year and statistically, 30% of all online purchases occur in the three months leading up to Christmas.

6. Despite the growth in online sales, a 2015 ‘Christmas Pain Points Survey’ by American Express found that 72% of shoppers would like to see a product in person before making a purchasing decision. 43.3% of those surveyed wanted to support their local stores and retailers, and 51.5% of the study group expressed a desire to receive the item immediately. However, 21% of surveyed shoppers stated that they would be prevented from shopping in brick and mortar stores this Christmas due to the opening hours clashing with their schedules.

7. 33% of retailers surveyed by Deloitte stated that they intended to begin discounting their products in early December this year. However, the American Express survey findings suggest that holiday discounts aren’t high priorities for consumers. The study found that the top five considerations were: a desire for tailored services like gift wrapping, personal shopping, and customised ordering, the latest and most technologically advanced trends and products, the ability to earn reward points and use discount vouchers, ‘old fashioned’ personalised service and convenience.

8. Six out of seven Australians surveyed by The Westpac-Melbourne Institute Consumer Sentiment survey said they expected to spend the same or less on gifts in 2016. 34% of those surveyed stated that they intended to ‘spend less’, 52% planned to spend ‘the same’ and 14% said ‘more’.

9. The Commonwealth Bank XMAS Spending Study suggests that one quarter of Australian will do the majority of their Christmas shopping this Saturday (17th December). The other big days predicted for retailers are Sunday the 18th and Thursday the 22nd. The survey also found that women will do their shopping earlier around the first two weeks of December (key dates include the 1st, 3rd, and 10th) whilst men will wait until Thursday the 22nd and Friday 23rd to make their purchases.

10. 60% of Australians won’t set themselves a budget for presents this year and $9.9billion is the expected amount that Australians will spend on gifts. Of that number, women will buy $5.2 billion dollars’ worth of the presents, and generation wise, Gen Y will spend $3.3 billion (overspending by $247 million) whilst Baby Boomers will spend $2.8 billion (overspending by $179 million).

11. Present spending has grown 31% since 2014, with Australians predicted to spend on average $599 each on presents. In 2012, the average spend was $475.

Direct Mail Solutions specialise in providing direct mail marketing support to Melbourne small businesses in the form of printing, distribution, shrink wrapping and general fulfilment services.

Target lapsed customers with personalised direct mail campaigns

While many marketing regimes focus on targeting new customers, it’s also important to regularly engage with existing customers, especially those whose patronage has lapped. Find out how to reengage existing customers in 5 easy steps with a targeted direct mail marketing campaign.

Determine why customers are inactive

It should be relatively easy to determine your inactive customers by simply looking through your customer data. If you don’t have sufficient data, it’s a good idea to invest in professional data solutions so you can better track your customer’s spending habits and organise your mailing list accordingly. After identifying which of your customers are no longer purchasing your products, you need to determine why they are no longer spending money on your business. Some businesses work on a one-time purchase model, however it’s important for businesses relying on repeat customers to maintain regular contact with their client base.

Examine your recent marketing efforts to see where you may have neglected lapsing customers. You may need to make your marketing towards these customers more personal, or perhaps you’ve bombarded them with too much material. Whatever the reason, the better you try to understand your customers’ individual circumstances, the easier it will be to win them back.

Tailor your direct mail campaign

Once you’ve figured out why your existing customers are no longer purchasing your products or services, you can then use this information along with personal details to create a targeted marketing campaign. Design a campaign that is able to be tailored to each individual customers wants and needs, taking into account their transaction history and personal preferences. Put an emphasis on personalised approach by including your customer’s name in the mail out and notifying them of new products or services that align with their spending history. If possible, it’s also a good idea to use A/B testing on lapsed customers to figure out how best to reengage similar customers in the future.

Win them back with rewards

If a customer has strayed from your business, steps need to be taken to show them they are still valued and appreciated. A great way to do this is with rewards such as discount coupons, special offers or even free gifts. Rewards should be clear in their intent and should communicate a sense of exclusivity: you’re offering this reward to the customer because you noticed their lack of activity and value their custom. Rewards should be as personalised as possible (without being creepy) and a friendly “We miss you” message never goes astray.

Direct Mail is a fantastic way to communicate with lapsed customers as it lets them know you’re thinking of them and can be personalised to ensure repeat business. Direct Mail Solutions specialise in targeted direct mail marketing campaigns, from data solutions and design, right through to fulfillment.