Direct mail marketing, long a favorite of both B-2-C and B-2-B advertisers, may experience a drop of as much as 39% between 2008 and 2013. A study  from Borrell Associates concludes that within the next 4 years, the industry’s value could be as low as $29.8 billion. Why this large shift? spam-1398833-l

Advertisers have begun to realize that direct mail is an expensive proposition. Catalog production and mailing require a long lead time. And the U.S. Postal Service’s expected move to stop Saturday delivery will also negatively impact the direct mail industry.

These changes should bring about favorable conditions for e-mail marketing according to Borrell Associates. This online advertising form garnered $12.1 billion in 2008. By 2013, businesses could be spending at least $15.7 billion on e-mail marketing.  Analysts at Borrell Associates believe a significant percentage of this growth will come from local businesses that will gradually shift from direct mail to e-mail marketing. As a result, local e-mail marketing, which Borrell measured at  about 7% of the industry in 2008, will represent 12.7% of the total spending in this channel by 2013.

As local companies improve their e-mail marketing capabilities, look for the positive features of this medium – targeting by name and coupons – to bring in more local business.

[Source: Magill, Ken. Direct Mail Spending to Plummet, E-mail to Soar: Borrell, DirectMag.com, 2009]