Hey, business leaders – congrats on helping your company through another rewarding year! As you reflect on 2023 and plan for changes in 2024, you might begin wondering about what changes to print marketing you’ll need to account for, and which opportunities will be worth taking advantage of. To help you get prepared for the year ahead, we’ve gathered the biggest print marketing and mailing trends we expect to see in 2024 and beyond.
Increased Usage of AI in Print Marketing
AI was everywhere in 2023, and in 2024, we’re expecting tools like ChatGPT to become more popular in the print world as well. Before you panic about machines taking over another industry, let us explain. This year, we’ve already seen brands start to use AI to enhance their digital marketing campaigns. For example, Coca-Cola is using generative AI this holiday season to help consumers create their own personalized, branded greeting cards. Other brands have used AI tools to analyze large amounts of data from their marketing campaigns and quickly identify trends.
AI offers similar opportunities for print and direct mail marketing campaigns. AI tools can significantly cut down the time your company spends editing direct mail messages to match different customer segments’ unique locations or interests. They can also help refine mailing lists to identify the most receptive targets. If you feed audience data into an AI tool, it can predict which segments will respond most positively to a potential offer, making sure you only send mailers to the most optimal consumer groups.
Increased Mailing Through the USPS Mail Growth Initiative
The United States Postal Service (USPS) typically offers several promotions each year to encourage companies to increase their mailing volume or test new mailing products. However, the Mail Growth Initiative for 2024 is one of the most attractive offers we’ve seen from USPS in recent years. Through the new program, businesses who mail at least one million pieces throughout 2024 and exceed their 2023 mailing volume will receive 30 percent back on their average postage paid. If your company is interested in testing a higher volume of direct mail in 2024, this initiative may be ideal to maximize your reach while keeping costs down – especially as postage prices are set to increase starting January 1.
Engaging in a regular direct mail schedule can also improve your ROI by boosting overall results. According to Amsive, sending direct mail more frequently can raise response rates by up to 20 percent. As you continually send mailers throughout the year, your audience is likely to start recognizing your brand and grow more comfortable engaging with your messages or making their first purchase.
Prioritizing Data Security
Data security has become one of the most pressing issues for companies both large and small due to a rise in cyberattacks across the world. According to Cyber Talk, ransomware attacks increased by 93 percent between 2021 and 2022. As the use of personalization becomes even more prominent among print marketers, it’s critical to start taking steps to protect your audience’s data while still providing a valuable, custom message.
To button up your data security in 2024, we suggest updating internal user permissions to limit access to customer information to only those who need to reference it regularly. The fewer entrance points you have to confidential data, the harder it will be for hackers to find it. Additionally, you may want to re-educate employees on how to recognize well-disguised phishing emails, as they are one of the primary causes of data leaks. According to Verizon, 94% of malware is delivered via email. As always, you should also keep audience data updated regularly to ensure it is accurate and clean. Using outdated data not only makes your brand look careless, it can also can cost your brand lost revenue by providing incorrect insights.