SourceLink Client Survey Finds Direct Mail Is Still the Top Marketing Channel

CHICAGO—March 22, 2012—SourceLink, a CRM/direct marketing agency and leading GPO supplier, released the results of its most recent client survey, highlighting key trends in marketing services and transactional document processing priorities, as well as challenges and direction for the future.

Changes in technology are driving more effective targeted communication by leveraging data to create better engagement with consumers online and offline, while building deeper and lasting relationships. SourceLink’s latest “Client Marketing and Transactional Document Survey” revealed that direct mail is still a top marketing priority for 2012. The findings are based on completed surveys from more than 30 percent of the company’s client base.

Key objectives for 2012 were customer retention, ranked number one in the survey, followed closely by customer acquisition and customer profitability. Over 88 percent of respondents declared direct marketing to be the engine of choice in reaching their marketing objectives.

Other key findings include:

Direct mail ranked number one in planned channels for 2012, followed by Web/micro-site, email and social media. More than 64 percent of respondents use social media to some degree as part of their marketing plans.

Increasingly, marketers recognize the role of modeling and analytics in accomplishing their marketing objectives, as evidenced by 60+ percent of respondents asserting that they currently leverage customer intelligence or are interested in doing so in 2012.

Recognizing the imperative of multichannel efforts, more than 69 percent of respondents conduct multichannel marketing and 56+ percent of those consider it an integral part of their marketing strategy. However, only 34 percent are seeing the results they had hoped for, highlighting the need for a centralized, database approach to optimize multichannel communications.

Some 45 percent of respondents have considered integrating marketing with transactional customer documents, and 40+ percent use color personalization in marketing communications or transactional documents.

Increasing regulation and a tough economy have caused many financial services firms to reevaluate onboarding strategies and improve retention efforts. Retention activities were ranked by 78 percent of SourceLink’s financial services clients as “very important” or “most important” in terms of marketing priorities. Additionally, 78 percent of financial services respondents leverage multichannel marketing and 40 percent of those consider it an integral part of their marketing strategy.