programmatic direct mail

A new year, a fresh start — and the perfect time to reevaluate your marketing mix. As you enter 2021 and think about how your team can best diversify its marketing efforts while scaling and making an impact, consider adding high-performing direct mail to your tactics.

Direct mail marketing provides the perfect opportunity to reach your current or potential customers at home — where they’ve been for nearly a year and the foreseeable future (but hopefully for not too much longer). And while your audience may be able to overlook digital display ads, there’s one place they can’t ignore: their mailbox. 

The mailbox provides a source of consistency in our day-to-day lives, a welcome and comforting routine while we’re stuck at home, and is the perfect place to keep your brand top of mind for consumers. 

The key to high-performing direct mail is to ensure it’s relevant to the consumer and quickly reach them when they’re in the consideration window for that product or service. The strongest, freshest signals to determine this are recent online behaviors that reflect consumers’ interest and intent as they’re browsing or researching online.

Many brands are leveraging Programmatic Direct Mail® (PDM®) to capitalize on these powerful online signals and transform them into impactful mail pieces. These relevant PDM programs help brands hit their ROI goals while complementing their existing marketing efforts and maintaining cost-efficiency. 

Backed by years of learnings and successful campaigns, below are seven reasons why we think you should use Programmatic Direct Mail in 2021.

7 Reasons Why You Should Use Programmatic Direct Mail in 2021

1. You Can Segment Your Audience for a Tailored Approach

Whether this is your first direct mail campaign or you’ve been running them for years, it’s crucial to segment your audience for the most tailored approach to ensure success.

The first step is to evaluate your campaign objectives: Do you want to capitalize on your site traffic and reach recent site visitors who haven’t purchased? Do you want to acquire net new customers to fill your upper funnel? Winback lapsed customers?

Once this information is determined, you can build your audience segments and leverage the Programmatic Direct Mail Platform to seamlessly activate direct mail campaigns to reach each of your segmented audiences.

For example, use PDM Retargeting to reach your anonymous website visitors who did not convert within 2–3 days of their site visit, and persuade them to come back to the site and purchase. Or, leverage Lookalikes to identify net-new consumers that share similar attributes to your best customers to drive customer acquisition and awareness. 

2. It’s Triggered Based on Activity

With Programmatic Direct Mail, gone are the days of buying outdated lists to send out batches of direct mail pieces to cast a wide net. Instead, PDM generates daily based on recent intent and online activity and only delivered to ideal consumers that have shown a propensity to take action. This process eliminates unwanted mail and stale address data while maintaining cost efficiency and maximizing performance. 

You can also use Programmatic Direct Mail in an advanced way to reach your CRM audiences that have recently completed an action. Use PDM Graph Mail to immediately upsell or cross-sell based on purchase behavior, customer service follow-up, or milestones like birthdays and loyalty rewards. By leveraging your CRM data and sending mail based on triggers, you can use a different touchpoint to get in front of a customer, rather than an email that may get directed to spam or never opened.

3. Reach Unknown Site Visitors at Home

Retargeting has long been regarded as a lower-funnel marketing tactic, combining all site visitors — whether they’re current customers or prospects — into one audience. When you use Programmatic Direct Mail, you can suppress your existing customers to ensure you are only retargeting and reaching your net-new, anonymous online site visitors with a piece of impactful, relevant direct mail.


You may be asking, “if they’re anonymous, how can you reach them?” PebblePost’s proprietary Data Asset, the PebblePost Graph, can identify up to 70% of your site visitors and connect them to household addresses in a privacy-compliant way, enabling you to communicate with these most valuable consumers with a different touchpoint 

4. The Print Logistics are Taken Care of For You

PebblePost has created an integrated workflow that leverages a sophisticated print and logistics network to print and mail every day. Our on-demand printing reduces waste and ensures that the mail reaches consumers quickly while offering brands the flexibility to adapt or change their creatives without lengthy lead times.

Programmatic Direct Mail pieces are sent via First Class Mail® to ensure reliable and speedy delivery, arriving at home when intent signals are freshest, and your brand is still top of mind. For more information on PebblePost’s partnership with the USPS, check out this blog article.

5. Performance and Measurement You Can Track

Proving performance is critical to any marketing objective. Understanding how different audiences perform against your ROI goals is vital in adapting your strategy and maintaining performance as you scale. And with Programmatic Direct Mail, you can view accurate performance results that reveal your successes broken out by objective and audience segment.

For all Products within the PDM Platform, a Transaction Match performance analysis is done to measure conversions across all points of sale at the address level for the most accurate measurement that is not dependent on unreliable third party cookies. This analysis helps you figure out your incremental lift and other key performance indicators such as cost per acquisition, return on investment, and return on ad spend across all your points of sale. 

6. It Complements Your Omnichannel Approach

By incorporating Programmatic Direct Mail into your digital marketing strategy, you capitalize on your online traffic with a different touchpoint — i.e., a physical piece of mail — while maintaining ROI, or supplement your existing email marketing efforts with relevant reminders at home. 

Additionally, the direct mail component promotes shopper autonomy by giving them the option to decide which purchasing method works best for them — whether that is shopping in-store, curbside pickup, or online. Omnichannel performance measurement ensures that we can prove the effectiveness of your PDM Campaigns regardless of where the conversions are taking place. 

7. It Can Be Used at Any Point in the Customer Lifecycle

Whether your campaign objectives are to winback lapsed customers, remind your current customers of a promotion, or acquire new customers, you can select a Programmatic Direct Mail product that best meets your needs.

Activate Retargeting to reach those recent website visitors that didn’t purchase. Or, leverage the billions of online events amassed over the holidays within the PebblePost Graph to acquire new customers by running Lookalikes to identify the most valuable prospects that are ready to make a purchase. 

Are you aiming to reach your customers’ mailboxes at a specific time to promote a President’s Day Sale or reach your email subscribers with direct mail? Leverage Graph Mail to reach any subset of your CRM audience and use the PDM Platform to print-on-demand and first-class postage to get in-home within 2–3 days. 

In Conclusion

As you think about expanding your marketing mix with direct mail or seek ways to improve or modernize your existing direct mail program in the new year, consider Programmatic Direct Mail. It is a seamless way to integrate real-time online intent data with impactful direct mail. 

To learn more about Programmatic Direct Mail or PebblePost and how it can complement your marketing efforts, please reach out to us at hello@pebblepost.com.

Free Guide:
PebblePost's Guide to Programmatic Direct Mail

Download our short guide and learn the who, what, why, and how of Programmatic Direct Mail.
Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.