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How to Improve Direct Mail Response Rates with the Right Circulation Strategy – Case Study

In this case study, you will read about how Arandell assisted a client in improving their direct mail response rates and why that’s important. As you might imagine, having a poor response rate from your catalog and other direct mail pieces can be devastating to your bottom line. Luckily, by developing and executing the right circulation strategy you can begin to eliminate customer segments that are unresponsive and are thus not profitable. Read on to find out how.

About the Customer

This company had an annual circulation of 10+ million catalogs. Despite a high quality product and loyal repeat buyers, sales were lagging in an increasingly competitive market. This food retailer needed to boost their direct mail response rates and increase revenue, but did not want to increase their budget.

The Challenge

With international brand recognition and a reputation for excellence, this company sets the standard for culinary taste and quality. This premier gourmet foods and gift baskets retailer stands by their mission to lead the marketplace in the exploration, discovery, and celebration of food from around the globe. Their ongoing success for the past 81 years is due to their passionate team, commitment to building lifelong relationships with their customers, and an unconditional guarantee.

The Solution

Through an audit of this retailer’s current circulation plan, Arandell analyzed the data integrity of their mailing list with the ultimate goal being to improve their direct mail response rates. This identified high revenue and low revenue performing customers. As a result, Arandell recommended changes in the composition of the mailings, their timing and their frequency. Not only did we eliminate mailings to poor performing customers, we replaced those direct mailings and provided new lists of customers. By forecasting all future catalog mailings, our client was able to make decisions for future campaigns. A subscriber survey was conducted to help them see the competitive landscape for what it is, evaluating the positioning of their catalog versus the array of competition they face.

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Overall Impact

• Our client saw a decrease in circulation costs of 25% year-over-year
• We identified 10.3% on individual duplicates on their direct mail file
• Sales increased by 65%
• Online orders increased by 48%
• Revenue-per-catalog mailed increased by 124%
• Increase in corporate gift buying of $1.2MM