Millennials Killing Direct Mail

Millennials have surpassed Baby Boomers as the largest generation and the biggest group of consumers.  Now that Millennials have gotten older and have more buying power, many companies view them as a lucrative market that they want to tap into.  Gen Y-ers have grown up with computers, the internet and cellphones, which explains the shift towards digital advertising.  This poses many questions: Should businesses forgo direct mail when targeting Millennials?  Should they forgo direct mail altogether?  Will Millennials kill direct mail?  What marketers and advertisers need to realize is that they can’t put all of their eggs in one basket when marketing to Millennials.  Yes, digital marketing has proven itself to be effective, but digital marketing’s success isn’t direct mail’s demise.

The Surprising Truth About Millennials and Direct Mail
Despite many claims of print being dead and digital marketing being the new black, direct mail is just as successful as it was before the Gen Y takeover.  The open and response rates for direct mail remain high for every age group – Millennials included.  According to a study by InfoTrends and Prinova, Millennials open their direct mail at the same rate of 66% as every other generation.

You may be wondering why Millennials read and respond to direct mail.  It’s a legitimate question, considering that they’re the biggest group of digital media consumers, online buyers, and smartphone users.  Perhaps it’s because direct mail better aligns with this generation’s values.  Millennials are known for caring about authenticity and uniqueness.  Receiving snail mail as opposed to email feels more sincere and personal.  Digital marketing, though more modern and trendy, can seem cold and impersonal.  It could also be due to Millennials affinity for nostalgia.  Many companies have found success with nostalgia marketing when targeting people between ages 18 and 34.  Because mail is considered old fashioned, they may find it sentimental.

Now that we’ve established that direct mail is still a powerful advertising tool for this generation, the next question is how to best structure campaigns.  Making the mailer copy as personalized as possible, including testimonials, and mobile integration with a QR code or personalized URL are just a few things you should consider.  For more tips on direct mail marketing to Millennials visit