Why the Holidays are a Perfect Time to Use Print and Direct Mail

The holidays are right around the corner. Are your holiday marketing campaigns ready to launch? If not, don’t panic. You are not alone, but you do need to hurry!

If you’re crunched for time it might be tempting to send out a quick email or serve up a few up promotions through social media. But buyer beware. You may be trading speed for response rates. The most successful holiday marketing campaigns are delivered across multiple channels, including print.

And although that’s not breaking news, when holiday deadlines are looming, it may be tempting to opt for digital only campaigns. After all, digital ads can be launched quickly and do not require production from an outside vendor. However, in my experience, taking the easy road almost never pays off.

Here’s why it’s important to use direct mail as part of a successful, multichannel holiday marketing campaign.

People are Extra Receptive to Direct Mail During the Holidays

The USPS reports that 98% of people get their mail on a daily basis, but during the holidays we pay closer attention. Why? Because our mail is filled with personal greetings and well-wishes from family and friends.

The numbers speak for themselves. Each year, roughly 19 billion cards, letters, and packages are delivered between Thanksgiving and Christmas. That’s a lot of mail! Although some of us still receive a card on birthdays or special occasions, it doesn’t compare to the amount of mail we receive during the holidays.

At this time of year, getting the mail is no longer a chore. We look forward to it with anticipation and excitement—making us more receptive to every direct mail piece inside. And while that can certainly help boost holiday sales, it’s an even better time to boost engagement and brand loyalty.

The holidays are a perfect time to use direct mail to send customer appreciation cards, launch a loyalty program, or show support for a nonprofit organization. So as you think about your holiday promotions, think beyond the transaction. With direct mail, you’ll have a chance to catch consumers when they are most likely to respond, engage, and remember your brand which will impact your business throughout the year.

Everyone is Looking for Gift Ideas

Holiday shopping can be stressful, especially when you don’t know what to get someone. Although people say ‘it’s the thought that counts’, the quest for the perfect gift is real! So where do you start when you’ve run out of ideas?

When shopping for that hard to buy for person, many consumers turn to holiday catalogs and magazines. Unlike email promotions that highlight only a few products, direct mail promotions can offer a number of gift ideas at once. In fact, people who shop from catalogs spend 28% more than those who don’t according to a USPS study. Plus browsing holiday catalogs saves busy shoppers valuable time. Rather than wandering through crowded malls hoping to spot the perfect gift or waiting for inspiration to strike during an endless google search, consumers can head straight to the mailbox for a visual and tactile resource filled with gift ideas.

Direct Mail is Effective for Holiday Shopping

A 2016 study by Epsilon reports that 77% of holiday shoppers are influenced by direct mail. Plus on average, direct mail has one of the highest response rates of any marketing channel and often outperforms all digital channels combined.


Given these statistics and the fact that consumers are more receptive to mail during the holidays, it’s critical for brands to include direct mail in their holiday marketing strategy. Brands that don’t are missing a big opportunity to stand out from the competition.

Mail Expands Your Holiday Reach

One of the greatest advantages of direct mail is that it can be delivered to almost anyone. Direct mail does not require an opt-in and there are no ad blockers that will prevent your message from being delivered. Furthermore, it appeals to all age groups and demographics—even digital natives. In fact, 92% of young people actually prefer direct mail when making a purchasing decision.

So, if your brand is launching a new product or service area, consider expanding your reach with direct mail. Using tools like Every Door Direct Mail, you can send holiday promotions to every household in a particular neighborhood or region for a low postage rate. Or you can apply the criteria used for online and social media advertising to build a new direct mail prospect list or expand an existing list.

On average, 39% of customers say they try a business for the first time because of direct mail advertising. That’s why it’s a great tool for attracting new customers, particularly during the holidays when consumer awareness of direct mail is at an all-time high.

Direct Mail Compliments Digital Channels

Promoting your holiday marketing campaign across multiple channels will increase response rates. That’s why we’re not advocating for direct mail instead of digital. However, we strongly recommend adding direct mail to any holiday promotion.

Unfortunately, for some marketers, direct mail seems disconnected, hard to execute, and difficult to track alongside other digital strategies. But it doesn’t have to be that way. Many online strategies such as online ad retargeting, content personalization, and call tracking can be easily paired with direct mail. Plus thanks to the availability of online templates and web-to-print technology, direct mail campaigns won’t take months to execute.

The holidays are a huge opportunity for marketers across many industries. Don’t miss out on the potential for increased engagement, new customers, and sales, by going for the quick-fix. Instead, ensure that your brand stays top-of-mind during the holiday season by reaching consumers through direct mail, email, and online marketing strategies.

Download one of our holiday card templates to get started

Tags: Holidays, Marketing, Promotions

Picture of Michelle Cardin

Michelle Cardin

Michelle Cardin leads Shawmut’s creative team in developing print, direct mail, and digital marketing campaigns. Some of our work includes projects for Dell EMC, Boston College, athenahealth, Insulet, and OBP Medical. She is an experienced marketer and copywriter who enjoys helping clients solve communication challenges and create successful marketing campaigns.

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