Innovative brands are using direct mail to improve customer engagement – Interview with Dan Frohnen of Sendoso

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Today’s interview is with Dan Frohnen, CMO at Sendoso , a cloud-based direct mail and engagement platform that gives companies the ability to send direct mail, eGifts, wine, company swag, handwritten notes, welcome kits, and custom gifts. Dan joins me today to talk direct mail, why direct mail is not used as much as it could or should be, waste, sustainability and lessons that have emerged in the last few months.

This interview follows on from my recent interview – Excellence and extreme humanization are needed more than ever – Interview with Tom Peters – and is number 349 in the series of interviews with authors and business leaders that are doing great things, providing valuable insights, helping businesses innovate and delivering great service and experience to both their customers and their employees.

Here’s the highlights of my chat with Dan:

  • Sendoso is all about using tech to create interesting and memorable moments that differentiate a brand experience, particularly in a very crowded and noisy marketplace.
  • This will become increasingly relevant in a post-COVID world where many of us will continue to do a lot of our work remotely.
  • How do you put an offline touch point in an online world?
  • Email in good times achieves up to a 20% open rate but can often only generate a 2. 5% response rate.
  • However, direct mail can generate anything from 20, 40, 50, 60% response rates depending on how refined your audience is and what the offer is.
  • Sending something physical also adds a dimension where the object that is sent becomes a social object. There is reach beyond just the receiving person.
  • Direct mail feels like the poor cousin in the marketing mix right now but it can be really effective.
  • Examples:
    • Lessonly – when COVID hit a lot of the events they were planning got cancelled. They repurposed many of them to online events and used e-gifts as a way to incentivize people to attend. They achieved a 60% attend rate as a result of that. 40% was a really good benchmark for a virtual event in the past. But now, if you get 20% you’re lucky because there’s just so much digital fatigue. In terms of the gift they used: They offered attendees a choice of donating to charity or buying themselves lunch and a lot of people chose to donate to a charity.
    • Terminus – they cooked up an idea called the ABM (Account Based Marketing) cookbook which they sent out in a really beautiful direct mail kit that included an ebook with all kinds of different account based marketing strategies as well as some giveaway items within the box so that when when that did arrive, it wasn’t just something dry about ABM.
  • Some of the the best brands that emerge from times like this are helping and educating their customers. They’re patient with their audiences. They understand that as long as they’re educating and creating brand affinity that when customers can afford to buy, they will and it will be from the brands that they know and trust.
  • While it can be said that direct mail can create a lot of waste so can email…..consider deletion rates as well as all of the energy use, time and effort to create email campaigns that achieve low response rates.
  • There is a possibly a sustainable angle behind brands not using direct mail.
  • However, many clients are looking very keenly at the sustainability of packaging and materials.
  • With many people working from home Sendoso are including an address confirmation feature to make sure that a package gets sent to the right address.
  • However, this also enables people to say that they don’t want to receive anything which is also reducing waste.
  • Sendoso already helps clients work out the carbon footprint of their campaigns and are very focused on their own as an organization.
  • A carbon footprint calculator would be very useful and super interesting in that regard.
  • Dan’s best advice: Lean into your audiences and really understand what they care about, craft your message to what they care about and make sure that your product solves for what they care about. The brands that take the extra time to really understand that and do that work will win.
  • Dan’s Punk CX word(s): Social movement.
  • Dan’s Punk CX brand: Converse.

About Dan

DanFrohnenHeadshotDan Frohnen is the Chief Marketing Officer at Sendoso, a cloud-based direct mail and engagement platform that gives companies the ability to send direct mail, eGifts, wine, company swag, handwritten notes, welcome kits, and custom gifts.

As a career marketing leader, Dan has a passion for conceptualizing and implementing marketing strategy, exceeding targeted projections, and leading teams for both B2B & B2C programs. He strengthens organization with out-of-the-box thinking and an entrepreneurial spirit.

Find out more about Sendoso here, say Hi to them and Dan on Twitter @sendosohq and @danielfrohnen and feel free to connect with Dan on LinkedIn here.

Image by Pete Linforth from Pixabay

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