Brand recall is the ability of consumers to recognize and remember your brand. This cognitive metric goes beyond basic recognition. It reflects how deeply your brand has been imprinted in consumers' minds. The stronger your brand recall, the higher the odds are that a person will choose your brand over others.
Creating strong brand recall might seem challenging in the fast-paced, advertising-saturated digital world. Still, there is one marketing strategy that delivers consistent results and enhances brand recall. Direct mail is a tangible, personalized, and uncluttered medium that boosts brand recognition and awareness. Let's explore the concept of brand recall and the powerful benefits of direct mail and provide tips on using direct mail to optimize your results.
What Is Brand Recall?
Brand recall refers to the cognitive ability of consumers to recognize and remember a brand name when presented with a product category or cue related to it. It is a pivotal aspect of brand awareness that gauges a brand's impression in consumers' minds.
Essentially, the stronger the brand recall, the higher the possibility that a consumer will select a particular brand over its competitors. The process of brand recall can be spontaneous or unprompted, where a brand name springs to mind instantly upon seeing a product type, or it can be prompted, where a consumer recognizes a brand from a list of alternatives. It's a significant metric for marketers as it demonstrates the impact and effectiveness of their branding strategies, with successful brand recall often correlating with consumer loyalty and purchasing behavior.
Brand recall, however, is more challenging than slapping your logo on every advertisement you send out. To get people to recognize and remember your brand, your brand's voice, tone, and style need to be consistent and reflected in your messaging. In addition, you need to choose a marketing channel that guarantees enhanced brand recall when your brand is reflected in its messaging, like direct mail.
The Power of Direct Mail
Direct mail refers to physical marketing messages sent to customers or prospects to get them to respond. Responses could include contacting you to learn more, visiting your website, making a purchase, or visiting your location. Direct mail often comes in the form of a postcard, brochure, newsletter, catalog, letter inside of an envelope, or greeting card. Direct mail also typically includes branding, a call to action (CTA), an eye-catching design, and contact information.
Benefits of direct mail as a marketing tool include:
- Direct mail can be targeted and personalized
- There is less competition in the mailbox and no digital clutter
- Direct mail generates higher response rates than online marketing efforts
- Direct mail marketing results in enhanced engagement and emotional connection
- Direct mail's tangibility and physical presence result in making your message more memorable
How Direct Mail Enhances Brand Recall
A study showed that 75% of people can recall a brand after receiving a direct mail piece. In comparison, only 44% can remember a brand after viewing an online ad. But why is brand recall higher for direct mail?
Research has shown that our brains react differently to direct mail than digital advertisements like email, online display ads, or social media. What was found in this research is that direct mail advertisements were more effective than online ads in leaving a lasting impression, and people take more time to read and focus on direct mail. These findings prove that direct mail has a more substantial influence when it comes to someone being able to recognize and remember a brand.
Here are a few things direct mail marketing excels at when it comes to enhancing brand recall:
Direct Mail Is Tangible & Has Less Competition
The tangible nature of direct mail and its less competition can significantly boost brand recall. Direct mail, a physical medium, offers a sensory experience that digital methods cannot replicate. Consumers can touch and feel the material, invoking a deeper level of engagement, resulting in it being memorable. This tactile interaction often leads to better retention and recall of the brand. Furthermore, direct mail faces less competition than crowded digital channels, where brands compete for attention among countless distractions. The uncluttered mailbox means direct mail can capture the recipient's undivided attention, allowing the brand message to resonate more strongly and enhancing brand recall.
Direct Mail Creates Memorable Experiences
Through unique designs, formats, branding, and interactive elements like QR codes, direct mail is eye-catching, engaging, and memorable. Plus, direct mail requires 21% less cognitive effort to process than online media, proving that direct mail is easier to understand and more memorable.
In addition, we all remember something that surprises and delights us compared to something that annoys us. And with 75% of people saying receiving direct mail made them feel special and 73% saying they prefer receiving direct mail compared to digital ads, it's important to reach out to your audience using direct mail to create memorable experiences and strengthen brand recall.
Mail Can be Personalized for Even Better Results
While it's easy to personalize emails for each recipient, it's also easy to personalize direct mail using a similar process. Thanks to Variable Data Printing, you can create unique per-mail piece content to customize each direct mail piece for each recipient. This could include personalized images, names, birthdays, themes, content related to specific demographics, unique promo codes, and more. Plus, direct mail data shows that personalized direct mail can generate a 500% higher response rate. Higher response rates mean more opportunities for your company to connect with each recipient, thus enhancing the chance that each recipient recognizes and remembers your brand.
Direct Mail Reinforces Brand Messaging
Direct mail is critical in reinforcing brand messaging and enhancing brand recall by providing a tangible and personalized interaction with customers and prospects. The tangible nature of direct mail can create a more memorable experience than digital mediums, stimulating multiple senses and thus leaving a stronger impression on the consumer. By tailoring the content and design, direct mail communicates a brand's unique value proposition, delivering a strong, consistent brand image. Additionally, it offers the opportunity for repeated exposure to the brand since direct mail is kept for an average of 17 days, which is crucial for enhancing brand recall. Each time a consumer interacts with a direct mail piece, it strengthens the brand's position in their mind, increasing the likelihood they will remember and choose that brand in the future.
Best Practices for Effective Direct Mail Campaigns
While direct mail enhances brand recall and generates higher response rates, stronger relationships, and higher ROIs, you need to ensure your direct mail campaign is executed properly to generate the best results.
Here are a few best practices for effective direct mail campaigns:
Identify Target Audience & Goals
When crafting an effective direct mail campaign, you need to pay close attention to your target audience and goals. Once you have identified your audience and goals, you can successfully align your messaging, design, imagery, and call to action to reflect your target audience and goals.
Create Compelling & Relevant Content
Your direct mail content should be intriguing and concise. Compose attention-grabbing headlines, an irresistible call to action, and gather high-quality images that align with who your audience is. For example, if you're a pet store targeting people with pets, include images of happy people with their pets. If you're a hair salon and most of your audience is women, include images of women. Creating compelling and relevant content for your direct mail pieces is essential as it helps grab your recipients' attention and creates meaningful connections.
Design Attention-Grabbing Mail Pieces
When designing your mail pieces, ensure you include adequate negative space to break up the content, eye-catching colors, high contrast throughout, large and bold text, and a color palette that aligns with your brand. Also, you need to make sure that you include your logo, company name, contact information, and other branded elements to create strong brand recall.
Integrate Direct Mail with Other Marketing Channels
The more someone sees and interacts with your messaging, the better the chance they will remember your brand. Because of this, you can generate better results and enhance brand recall further by integrating direct mail with other marketing channels, like email and social media posts. When direct mail is combined with email, there can be a 125% increase in inquiries, meaning a 125% increased chance that your audience reaches out and interacts with your company, building a stronger connection and thus enhanced brand recall.
Conclusion: Direct Mail Enhances Brand Recall
Direct mail is a powerful tool for marketers seeking to enhance brand recall. Its physical nature, personalization capabilities, and effect on memory give it an advantage in the crowded marketing landscape. It delivers results online marketing can't compete with and offers a unique sensory experience and an escape from digital clutter. Its ability to reinforce brand messaging through consistent, tangible interactions has proven to strengthen a brand's ability to be remembered.
If you're ready to harness the power of direct mail and enhance your brand recall, our direct mail capabilities are here to help. We offer advanced direct mail solutions tailored to your brand's goals and budget. From mailing your postcards to a list you already have to mailing your catalogs to a new targeted audience, our complete printing and mailing services have you covered. To learn more about how we can help you strengthen your brand's name using direct mail, visit our direct mail services page today.
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