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5 Advantages of Direct Mail for Community Financial Institutions

Today, marketers can target customers through digital marketing campaigns, making direct mail seem like a thing of the past – slow and outdated.  Contrary to that belief, many mainstream banks understand that direct mail still delivers excellent results. They actively use direct mail marketing by sending gifts and other direct mail pieces to their audience. Here are five advantages of direct mail for community banks and credit unions:

1.    Direct mail lends credibility to banks

Research indicates that direct mail elicits a significantly stronger emotional response and brand recall than digital ads. Direct mail campaign has excellent targeting options as you can create personalized messages by understanding customers’ needs. Since customers receive only messages that meet their individual needs, that will drastically increase your bank’s credibility and gets the audience to trust your bank. This can be key in an industry where trust is critical, and even more so for online financial institutions that need to build a connection with consumers.

2.    Direct mail’s response rate beats digital

Marketing experts suggest that the response rates for direct mail are 10 to 30 times higher than digital mail, and 60 percent of recipients note that receiving and handling direct mail makes a longer-lasting mental impression and better recall. Digital marketing will likely cross over thousands of people in your community. However, the digital campaign might still get fewer responses. Also, people in your community might prefer being updated through direct mail rather than through subscriptions, events, and online advertisements. Make sure you know your audience and tailor your message to meet their needs.

3.    Direct mail increases brand appearance

If there’s one place where you are guaranteed to get the attention and time from a person, it’s at their own home. Direct mail is more shareable and likely viewed by the entire household. Typical lifespan of a printed piece is 17 days. Additionally, your community bank can be creative by sending direct mail that offers solutions to audiences’ banking needs. For example, a simple household budget template and the information about your savings products will catch your audience’s attention, ultimately increasing brand awareness. Other direct mail marketing best practices include keeping your direct mail piece focused and clear of clutter, using clear, easy-to-read fonts, and making your CTA the focal point of the mailer.

4.    Direct mail helps banks connect with millennials

Many millennials enjoy direct mail more than any previous generation. Not only that, but they are adept at ignoring digital ads. However, your bank needs to be creative about outreach content. For example, send a postcard with a scannable QR code to a trackable landing page with valuable financial education content about home loans. Personalized URLs, call-to-action, video mailers, and promotion codes can intrigue the recipient to visit banks’ landing pages.

5.    Direct mail helps you stay connected with seniors

While more and more seniors research online, they still respond best to printed materials. This demographic is most likely to sit down and spend time reading direct mail, understand them deeply, and spread word-of-mouth publicity for your brand.


Direct mail effectively reaches customers who prefer the “personal touch” of paper in their mailbox. It’s also cost-effective for community banks with smaller budgets and can be used as another channel for marketing products or services that complement your bank’s offerings. Banks can use direct mail to communicate anything from personal and business loans to investment plans and general banking. Direct mail allows your bank to be constantly in touch with customers and increase connections with personal contacts.


Key Takeaways

  • Direct mail lends credibility to banks
  • Direct mail’s response rate beats digital
  • Direct mail increases the brand appearance
  • Direct mail helps banks connect with the millennials
  • Direct mail allows you to stay connected with seniors