Email Versus Direct Mail - Which is best for your marketing campaign?

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This may be a question of new versus old, or digital versus traditional. However, how do you know which method is right for your next campaign?

Like most things in life there is a place for both marketing techniques. In fact by combining both you can maximise the impact of your campaign. Here are some of the positives and negatives of email and direct mail campaigns.

Direct Mail


  • They are much more likely to get read than an email
  • It is easier to source the correct data for a physical mailer than an email
  • It has more design flexibility. It allows you to more creative, unique and memorable
Direct Mail Disadvantages
  • It is much more expensive especially when you include design, printing, postage and the time involved to get the mailshot sent out
  • There is a longer lead time from commencement to delivery


  • Ideal for large scale mass marketing (assuming you have clean data and permission to send emails to your database)
  • You can see who has read the email and what links have been clicked
  • Short lead time - campaigns can be planned and launched very quickly
  • It is much easier to link it back to your other digital platforms such as your website and social media.
Email Disadvantages
  • Difficult to get the attention of the recipient - promotional emails have become overused
  • It is very easy to delete, ignore or unsubscribe
  • In a lot of cases they can be mistaken for spam and blocked by the company‚Äôs spam filter

So before you start an email or direct mail campaign think about who you are sending it to and what will work best for your campaign. Oftentimes a combination of both methods can increase your conversion - an email campaign can increase your brand awareness and a focused direct mail campaign to the prospects who are most likely to convert.