When talking with various clients over the past few years, we would sometimes discuss the idea of mail tracking, or to be specific, IMb tracing. Some clients are interested and want to learn more about it, but others sometimes say they don’t need it for their business. It is usually a matter of weeks before I get a call from the non-interested client saying they are questioning the delivery of a campaign and "is there any way I can go back and collect scans after the campaigned already mailed?"
Unfortunately they can’t.
They are left not knowing what really happened with their campaign. Was there a problem with delivery or was the piece or offer not getting the response they had hoped for? Could they have saved the mailing knowing more details or did they just spend a lot of money with no return? There are many reasons to track your mailing; near real time delivery notification, identify mail trends, multi-channel communications, and managing cash flow and supply chains to name just a few. But, there are other ways to learn from the data to help your business.
- Determine how long it takes for clients to respond once they receive the mail piece. Do you get better response rates when you target delivery for a specific day of the week; is Monday better then Friday?
- Tracking valuable coupons so if a piece is not delivered, the coupon can become invalid.
- You can discover many new things when digging through the data but you won’t learn a thing if you don’t track it. If you spend tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars on a mailing campaign, doesn’t it make sense to follow it through to the end?
- It doesn’t end when the printer drops the mail. It ends when you have the response and a new client.
IMbtracing is like an insurance policy, but it is free. It is there if and when you need it. If you don’t have the time or knowledge of how to interpret the free data, there are companies that will do it for you. But if you never have the data to start with you can’t make an informed conclusion as to what caused the issue. Start collecting the tracking data right away and start learning more about your mail.