Direct marketing

Direct marketing is a form of advertising Where organisms communicate directly to customers through a variety of media Including cell phone text messaging , email, websites, online adverts, database marketing , fliers, catalog distribution, promotional letters and Targeted television, newspaper and magazine advertisements as well as outdoor advertising. Among practitioners, it is also known as direct response .

The prevalence of direct marketing and the unwelcome nature of some CAN-SPAM Act , requiring that consumers in the United States be allowed to opt out.


A 2010 study by the Direct Marketing Association reports that in 2010, marketers -commercial and nonprofit-spent $ 153.3 billion on direct marketing, which accounted for 54.2% of all in the United States. Measured against total US sales, these ads generated $ 1,798 trillion in incremental sales. In 2010, direct marketing accounted for 8.3% of total US gross domestic product. In 2010, there were 1.4 million direct marketing employees in the US. Their collective sales efforts directly supported 8.4 million other jobs, accounting for a total of 9.8 million US jobs. [1]


18th century English entrepreneur and potter Josiah Wedgwood is credited with inventing modern marketing , including direct mail. [2]

Meeting the demands of the consumer revolution and growth in wealth of the middle classes That Helped drive the Industrial Revolution in Britain, the 18th century entrepreneur and potterymanufacturer Josiah Wedgwood pioneered Many of the marketing strategies used today, Including direct marketing. [2] [3]

In the 19th century, Aaron Montgomery Ward believed that it was possible to use it effectively and efficiently, revolutionizing the marketplace and making use of a model for marketing products and creating customer loyalty. [4] The term “direct marketing” was coined long after Montgomery Ward’s time.

In 1872, Ward produced the first mail order for his Montgomery Ward mail order business. By purchasing goods and then reselling them directly to customers, the general condition of the customer is reduced to one of the general store, to the benefit of the customer, drastically lowering the prices. [4] The Direct Mail Advertising Association, predecessor of the present-day Direct Marketing Association , was first established in 1917. [5] Third class bulk mail postage rates were established in 1928. [6]

In 1967, Lester Wunderman identified, named, and defined the term “direct marketing”. Wunderman-considered by whom? ] To be the father of contemporary direct marketing-is behind the establishment of the toll-free number 1-800 [4] and loyalty marketing programs Numerous Including the Columbia Record Club, the magazine subscription card, and the American Express Customer Rewards program. [7]

Benefits of direct marketing

Direct marketing is attractive to many marketers because its positive results can be measured directly. For example, a marketer sends out 1,000 solicitations by mail and 100 respond to the promotion. This metric is known to the ‘ response rate ,’ and it is one of many clearly quantifiable success metrics employed by direct marketers. In contrast, general advertising uses indirect measurements, such as awareness or engagement, since there is no direct response from a consumer. Measurement of results is a fundamental element in successful direct marketing.

One of the other significant benefits of direct marketing is, it is possible that a strong brand. Or with a sound value proposal, with an effective offer, with effective communication, and with effective communication. Relative to other channels of distribution (say retailing) Direct Marketing as a Practice Principle on the Proposal, Offer, Communication, Choice of Channel and the Target.

The Internet has made it easier for marketing managers to measure the results of a campaign. This is often done by using a specific website. A call to action will be asked to the customer to visit the landing page, and the effectiveness of the campaign can be measured by the issue of distributed messages. Another way to measure the results is to compare the projected sales or leads to a direct term sales campaign.

Challenges and solutions

While many marketers recognize the financial benefits of increasing targeted awareness, some direct marketing efforts have been poorly compiled. This poses a problem for marketers and consumers, as advertisers do not want to waste money on communicating with consumers not interested in their products.

The success of any direct marketing campaign, in terms of number of times the following parameters, depends on: clarification needed ]

  • List or targeting (best targeting can yield up to 6 times the response, as compared with the worst targeting)
  • Offer (best offer can yield up to 3 times the response, as compared with the worst offer)
  • Timing (best timing for the campaign may yield up to 2 times the response, as compared with the worst timing)
  • Ease of response (best / multiple ways offered to respond to 1.35 times the response, as compared with not-so-friendly response mechanism / s)
  • Creativity (most creative messaging can yield up to 1.2 times the response, as compared to the least creative messaging)
  • Media employed. The medium / media used to deliver a message can have a significant impact on responses. It is difficult to truly personalize a DRTV or radio message. One can even attempt to send a message via email or text message, but a high quality direct mail

In sum, choosing the best of all the above parameters can yield up to 58 times more response, as compared to choosing the worst of the above parameters. These questions are about the marketers.

Some of these concerns have been addressed by direct marketing by the use of individual “opt-out” lists, variable printing, and better-targeted list practices. Furthermore, in order to avoid unwanted mailings, members of the marketing industry have established preference services that give customers more control over the marketing communications they receive in the mail.

The term “junk mail”, referring to commercial ads delivered via post office or directly deposited in consumers’ mail boxes, can be traced back to 1954. [8] The term “spam,” meaning “unsolicited commercial e-mail,” can be traced back to March 31, 1993 [9] ALTHOUGH FEW months in icts first it Merely Referred to inadvertently posting a Message So Many times is UseNet que la repetitions Effectively drowned out the normal flow of conversation.

To address the concerns of unwanted emails or spam , in 2003, The US Congress enacted the Controlling the Assault of Non-Solicited Pornography and Marketing ( CAN-SPAM ) Act to curb unwanted email messages. Can-Spam gives recipients the ability to stop unwanted emails, and sets up tough penalties for violations. [10] Additionally, ISPs and email service providers have developed effective Email Filtering programs. These filters can interfere with the delivery of email marketing campaigns, even if the person has subscribed to receive them, [11]email marketing can have the same hallmarks as spam. There are a range of email services providers that provide services for legitimate opt-in emailers to avoid being classified as spam.

Consumers to have concerns about the privacy and environmental implications of direct marketing. In order to increase the impact of advertising on the use of direct marketing and advertising, the company is working to improve the quality of its products. information, delivering the message to the customer, service, or event on offer. Additionally, members of the advertising industry have been working to adopt stricter codes regarding online targeted advertising. [12]


Any medium that can be used to deliver a communication to a customer can be employed in direct marketing, including:

Email marketing

Sending marketing messages through email or email marketing is one of the most widely used direct-marketing methods. One reason for email marketing is that it is relatively inexpensive to design, test, and send an email message. It also allows marketers to deliver messages around the clock, and to accurately measure responses.

Online tools

With the expansion of digital technology and tools, direct marketing is taking place through online channels. Most online advertising is delivered to a focused group of customers and has a trackable response.

  • Display Ads are interactive ads that appear on the web. Formats include static banners, pop ups, videos, and floating units. Customers can click on the following link to reply to more information. According to research by eMarketer , expenditures on online display ads rose 24.5% between 2010 and 2011. [13]
  • Search: 49% of US spend on Internet ads goes to search, in which advertisers pay for prominent placement among listings in search engines when a potential customer enters a search term criteria. [14] This paid investment industry is more than $ 10 billion for search companies. Marketers also use search engine optimization to drive traffic to their sites.
  • Social Media Sites , such as Facebook and Twitter, also provide opportunities for direct marketing to customers by responding.


Through mobile marketing, marketers engage with prospective customers and donors in an interactive manner through a mobile device or network, such as a cellphone, smartphone, or tablet. Types of mobile marketing messages include: SMS (short message service) -marketing communications are in the form of text messages, also known as texting. MMS (multi-media message service) -marketing communications are sent in the form of media messages.

In October 2013, the Federal Telephone Consumers Protection Act made it illegal to contact an individual via cell phone without prior written consent for a telephone calls to an automatic telephone dialing system or a prerecorded voice to deliver a telemarketing message to wireless numbers and residential lines . An existing business relationship does not provide an exception to this requirement.

Mobile Applications: Smartphone-based mobile apps contain several types of messages. Push Notifications are direct messages sent to a user or a part of a campaign. They include transactional, marketing, geo-based, and more. Rich Push Notifications are full HTML Push Notifications. Mobile apps also contain Interactive ads that appear inside the mobile application or app; Location-Based Marketing: marketing messages delivered directly to a mobile device based on the user’s location; QR Codes (quick-response barcodes): This is a type of 2D barcode with an encoded link that can be accessed from a smartphone. This technology is being used for product information.Mobile Banner Ads: Like standard banner ads for desktop


Another common form of direct marketing is telemarketing , in which marketers contact customers by phone. The primary benefit to businesses is increased lead generation, which helps businesses grow volume and customer base. The most successful telemarketing service providers focus on providing you with more qualified leads.

In the United States, the National Do Not Call Registry was created in 2003 to offer consumers a choice to receive telemarketing calls at home. The FTC created the National Do Not Call Registry after a comprehensive review of the Telemarketing Sales Rule (TSR). [15] The do-not-call provisions of the TSR cover any plan, program, or campaign to sell goods or services through interstate phone calls.

The 2012 amendment, which went into effect on October 16, 2013, said that it would be necessary to make a written request for the first time. and for pre-recorded calls to residential land for marketing purposes.

Further, a telemarketing calls may be made to the other side of the market by the customer (s). The provisions do not cover calls of political organizations or charities. [16]

Canada has its own National Do Not Call List (DNCL). In other countries it is voluntary, such as the New Zealand Name Removal Service .

Voicemail marketing

Voicemail marketing emerged from the market, and business voicemail systems. Voicemail marketing presented a cost effective means by which to reach people directly, by voice. Abuse of consumer marketing applications of voicemail marketing resulted in an abundance of “voice-spam”, and prompted many jurisdictions to pass laws regulating consumer voicemail marketing. More recently, businesses have used guided voicemail (an application where pre-recorded voicemails are guided by live callers) to achieve personalized business-to-business marketing formally reserved for telemarketing. Because guided voicemail is used for business only, it is free from Do not Call for Voicemail Marketing.

Voice mail is a similar form of voice-mail marketing with both business-to-business and business-to-consumer applications.

Broadcast faxing

Broadcast faxing , in which faxes are sent to multiple recipients. citation needed ] This article is not available in the United States and is not applicable to consumer marketing. In 2005, President Bush signed into law S.714, the Junk Fax Prevention Act of 2005 (JFPA), which sets marketers to those with whom they established an established business relationship (EBR), but imposed some new requirements. These requirements include providing an opt-out notice on the first page of faxing and establishing a system to accept opt-outs at any time of the day. Roughly 2% of direct marketing fax, mostly for business-to-business marketing campaigns. [17]


Couponing is used in print and digital media to elicit a response from the reader. An example is a coupon which the reader receives through the mail and takes a checkout counter to receive a discount.

Digital Coupons: Manufacturers and retailers make coupons available online for electronic orders that can be downloaded and printed. Digital coupons are available on company websites, social media outlets, texts, and email alerts. There is an increasing number of mobile phone applications offering digital coupons for direct use.

Daily Deal Websites are popular, and are becoming popularly popular. Customers sign up to receive a notice of discounts and offers, which are sent daily by email. Purchases are often made using a special coupon code or promotional code. The largest of these sites, Groupon, has over 83 million subscribers. [18]

Direct response marketing

Direct Response Marketing is designed to generate a customer’s response, and can be measured, and assigned to individual advertisements. [19] This form of marketing is differentiated from other marketing approaches, and is more likely to be used by retailers. Direct-response marketing is delivered through a wide variety of media , including DRTV , radio, mail, print advertising, telemarketing , catalogs , and the Internet .

Direct response mail order

Mail order in which customers respond by mailing a completed order form to the marketer. Mail order direct response has become more successful in recent years due to internet exposure. [20]

Direct response television

Direct marketing via television (commonly referred to as DRTV) has two basic forms: long form (usually half-hour or hour-long segments) and short form, which refers to typical 30-second gold 60-second commercials that ask viewers for an immediate response (typically to call a phone number on screen or go to a website). TV-response marketing-ie infomercials -can be considered a form of direct marketing, since responses are in the form of calls to telephone numbers given on-air. This enables the market to be more easily achieved than it is, and enables them to obtain customers’ numbers as targets for telemarketing. One of the most famous DRTV commercials was forGinsu Knives by Ginsu Products, Inc. of Rhode Island. Several aspects of ad, such as its use of the supply of content and the guarantee of satisfaction are much more important than that of direct response TV ads (DRTV).

Forms of direct response marketing on television include standard short form television commercials , infomercials and home shopping networks. Short-form direct-response commercials have time lengths ranging from 30 seconds to 2 minutes. Long form infomercials are typically 30 minutes long. An offshoot of the infomercial is the home shopping industry. In this medium, items can potentially be offered with reduced overhead . [21]

Direct response radio

In direct response radio, ads contain a call to action with a specific tracking mechanism. Often, this tracking mechanism is a “single call” with a unique Web URL. Results of the ads, orders, customers, leads, sales, revenue, and profits that result from the airing of those ads.

Direct response magazines and newspapers

Magazine and newspaper ads often include a direct response call-to-action, such as a toll-free number, a redeemable coupon at a brick-and-mortar store, or a QR code that can be scanned by a mobile device-these methods are all forms of direct marketing, because they have a direct and measurable action from the customer.

Other direct response media

Other media, such as magazines, newspapers, radio, social media , search engine marketing and e-mail can be used to elicit the response. A survey of large corporations found e-mail to be one of the most effective forms of direct response. [22]

Direct mail

Main article: Advertising mail
See also: Direct mail fundraising

The term advertising , or direct mail , is used by the postal service and other delivery services. Direct mail is sent to customers based on age, income, location, profession, buying pattern, etc. Direct mail includes advertising circulars, catalogs, free-trial CDs, pre-approved credit card applications, and other unsolicited merchandising invitations delivered by mail to homes and businesses. Bulk mailings are a particularly popular method of promotion for businesses operating in the financial services, home computer, and travel industries.

In many developed countries, these rates have been established. In the United States and United Kingdom , for example, there are more likely than not to be marketable rates. In order to qualify for these rates, marketers must format and exit the mail. In the US, marketers send over 90 billion pieces of direct mail per year. [23]

Advertisers Often live refine email practices into Targeted mailing in qui mail is sent out Following database analysis to select recipients regarded Most Likely to sponds Positively. For example, a person who may have an interest in golf may receive direct mail for golf-related products or may be appropriate for golfers. This is a type of database analysis. The United States Postal Service calls this form of mail “advertising mail” (admail for short).

Insert media

Another form of direct marketing, insert media are marketing materials, such as a catalog, newspaper, magazine, package, or bill. Coop or shared mail, where marketing is provided by a single envelope, is also considered insert media.


Out-of-home direct marketing refers to a wide array of media designed to reach the consumer outside the home, including billboards, transit, bus shelters, bus benches, aerials, airports, in-flight, in-store, movies, college campus / high schools, hotels, shopping malls, sports facilities, stadiums, taxis-that contain a call-to-action for the customer to respond.

Direct selling

Main article: Direct selling

Direct selling is the sale of the face to face contact with the customer, or by having salespeople approach potential customers in person, or through indirect means such as Tupperware parties.

Grassroots / community marketing

The door-to-door distribution [24]

Ethical conduct

The ICC Consolidated Code of Advertising and Marketing relates to all direct marketing activities in their entirety, whatever their form, medium or content. It sets the standards of the market for the conduct of the market, providing for direct marketing purposes or in the media. [25]

The offer

The fulfillment of any obligation arising from direct marketing activity should be prompt and efficient.

Whenever an offer is made, the operator and the consumer should be made clear to consumers, or directly at the time of the offer.


Where the presentation of an offer of the product is not included in the offer, or where additional products are needed to provide the product on offer.

High-pressure tactics that might be construed as harassment should be avoided, and marketers should ensure that they respect local culture and tradition to avoid offensive issues.

Right of withdrawal

Where consumers have a right of withdrawal, the marketer should inform them of the existence of this right , how to get further information about it, and how to exercise it. “Free trial”, “free trial”, “free trial” and “the like”, it should be made clear the procedure for returning them should be as simple as possible. Any time limit for the return should be clearly disclosed.

Identity of the marketer

The identity of the marketer and / or operator and details of where they can be contacted should be given This information should be available as a permanent reference, which can be maintained via the separate document, an online document, an email or SMS; it should not, for example, appear only on an order form which the consumer is required to return. At the time of delivery of the product, the marketer’s full name, address and telephone number should be supplied to the consumer.

Respecting consumer wishes

Where consumers have indicated the desire to receive direct marketing, or other means, this should be respected. Marketers who are communicating with international consumers should, where possible, ensure that they have the right to use their services in the marketplace. data protection and privacy [26] Where a system exists, enabling consumers to indicate a wish to receive unaddressed mail, this should be respected.


Overall responsibility for all aspects of direct marketing activities, whatever their kind or content, rests with the marketer. However, responsibility also applies to other participants in direct marketing activities and that needs to be taken into account. As well as marketers, these may include: operators, telemarketers or data controllers, or their subcontractors, who contribute to the activity or communication; publishers, media-owners or contractors who publish, transmit or distribute the offer or any other communication.

See also

  • Artificial intelligence marketing
  • As seen on TV
  • Customer relationship management
  • Direct marketing associations
  • Field marketing
  • Distribution leaflet
  • Personalized marketing
  • Street marketing
  • Transpromotional


  1. Jump up^ The Power of Direct Marketing: ROI, Sales, Expenditures, and Employment in the US, 2009-2010 Edition
  2. ^ Jump up to:b “They Broke It” . New York Times . January 12, 2017.
  3. Jump up^ “Why the Industrial Revolution Happened Here” . BBC. January 13, 2017.
  4. ^ Jump up to:c Brandweek 50, no. 36. D1-D4 “The Next Generation of Direct Marketing.” Academic Search Complete, EBSCOhost, 2009, p. 6.
  5. Jump up^ O’guinn, Thomas (2008). Advertising and Integrated Brand Promotion . Oxford Oxfordshire: Oxford University Press. p. 625. ISBN  978-0-324-56862-2 .
  6. Jump up^ “Postal Services OPERATIONS” . Retrieved 14 June 2015 .
  7. Jump up^ “Legend Marketing Lester Wunderman Live on ‘The Alan Levy Show ‘ “. Retrieved 14 June 2015 .
  8. Jump up^ Entry for junk, Online Etymology Dictionary. Retrieved February 19, 2008.
  9. Jump up^ Origin of the term “spam” to mean net abuse,Brad Templeton’swebsite. Retrieved February 19, 2008.
  10. Jump up^ FCC: Spam, Unwanted Text Messages and Email
  11. Jump up^ What is a “Whitelist” and why do I want to work with a “Whitelisted” Mail Distributor? [ not in quote given ]
  12. Jump up^ Edmund Lee. (7 June 2011). “More Advertisers Adopt Stricter Codes Around Digital Privacy” . Retrieved 14 June 2015 .
  13. Jump up^ “eMarketer Newsroom – Latest news, announcements, and media resources” . eMarketer Newsroom . Retrieved 14 June 2015 .
  14. Jump up^ DMA 2011 Statistical Fact Book, Chapter 4
  15. Jump up^ “Telemarketing Sales Rule” . Retrieved 14 June 2015 .
  16. Jump up^ FCC Report and Order, February 15, 2012 “Rules and Regulations Implementing the Telephone Consumer Protection Act of 1991”, CG Docket No. 02-278. [1]
  17. Jump up^ DMA 2010 Response Rate Report
  18. Jump up^ Rusli, Evelyn M .; De La Merced, Michael J. “Groupon IPO Plans With $ 30 Billion Valuation” . The New York Times . Retrieved 9 June 2015 .
  19. Jump up^ “Direct Response Advertising Glossary”; February 8, 2011.
  20. Jump up^ Huff, Priscilla. “Why the Internet is Causing Mail Order to Boom” . Home Business Magazine . Retrieved 3 October 2012 .
  21. Jump up^ Dickler, Jessica. “Home Shopping Networks Go High End” . CNN Money . Retrieved 3 Oct 2012 .
  22. Jump up^ Miller, Steve. “Study: E-mail is the Most Effective Form of Direct Response” . Adweek . Retrieved 3 Oct 2012 .
  23. Jump up^ DMA 2011 Statistical Fact Book, Chapter 2, page 46
  24. Jump up^ citation needed
  25. Jump up^ “C16 – Use of telemarketing” . International Chamber of Commerce . Retrieved 9 June 2015 .
  26. Jump up^ “Article C14 – Respecting consumer wishes” . International Chamber of Commerce . Retrieved 9 June 2015 .