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Direct Mail Marketing Trends for B2B in 2023

By: Ed Carr

In today’s competitive B2B landscape, the power of traditional marketing channels like direct mail is experiencing a resurgence. While digital undoubtedly dominates the marketing industry, and rightly so, B2B marketers are rediscovering the value of incorporating direct mail into their integrated, multi-channel strategies.

Recent data from the United States Postal Service indicates that direct mail remains influential, with a substantial number of people engaging with their mail regularly1. Combine this with the power of modern digital marketing, and you can offer a refreshing and effective way to engage with your B2B prospects and clients.

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Let’s dig into how direct mail is changing, why it’s still a popular choice for B2B marketers, why it works, and how you can leverage it.

Direct Mail Marketing Trends to Look Out For

Direct mail continues to reinvent itself in the rapidly evolving B2B marketing landscape. Today, businesses have more powerful tools and in-depth data, as compared to when direct mail marketing first became a cornerstone of the industry. With these capabilities and a modern sensibility, businesses can hone their direct mail marketing efforts to target the right people and present an impactful message. Here are the latest trends shaping direct mail today.


Personalization is not just a buzzword; it’s the driving force behind successful direct mail campaigns and pivotal for B2B. In today’s data-driven world, businesses are harnessing the power of data analytics to create highly targeted and individualized messages that resonate with their recipients on a personal level.

Variable Data Printing (VDP) is a game-changer in this regard. It allows businesses to customize every element of a mail piece, from the recipient’s name and address to tailored product recommendations based on their past interactions with the brand. This level of personalization ensures that each piece of direct mail feels like it was created just for the recipient, enhancing engagement and response rates.

Digital Integration

In the age of seamless omnichannel marketing, integration with digital is a significant trend. Direct mail and digital marketing are no longer isolated strategies and can pack a serious punch when combined.

QR codes, personalized URLs (PURLs), and augmented reality (AR) bridge the gap between the physical and digital worlds. By incorporating these elements into direct mail campaigns, marketers offer recipients a multi-dimensional experience. For example:

  • QR Codes can lead recipients to customized landing pages or special offers when scanned with a smartphone
  • PURLs allow recipients to access personalized web content related to the direct mail piece they received
  • AR can bring printed images or messages to life through interactive digital overlays

This integration enhances engagement and provides valuable tracking and analysis capabilities. Marketers can now measure the impact of their direct mail efforts in real time, gaining insights into what’s working and what needs adjustment.

The Importance of Digital Personalization in B2B Marketing


As environmental concerns rise, businesses increasingly adopt sustainability and eco-friendly practices in their direct mail marketing. Many companies use eco-friendly materials like recycled paper and environmentally friendly ink to reduce their carbon footprint. They also use more sustainable packaging that can be easily recycled or even upcycled, which environmentally conscious recipients appreciate. Highlighting eco-friendly practices aligns your brand with ethical values and sets a positive example for your audience, building trust with prospects.

The Resurgence of Direct Mail Marketing

So, why are these trends becoming more important in B2B marketing? Direct mail marketing is again becoming a highly valuable avenue for outreach. One of the strongest reasons for this is the tangible impact of receiving physical mail, which leads to extended engagement with the material. On top of that, people are generally not receiving as much direct mail marketing, meaning there’s less competition for their attention when they go to the mailbox.

There’s also a sense of trust and legitimacy with direct mail. An email inbox without serious spam protection can be inundated with scam emails claiming to be from legitimate businesses and phishing schemes hunting for personal information. Scammers are focused on digital, and many individuals are more likely to trust a direct mail piece sent by a brand without worrying if it’s nefarious.

Why Direct Mail Marketing Works

Direct mail has been around for a long time, and from the start, it’s been effectively connecting companies with potential clients and customers. Today, there are a few reasons that direct mail is still impactful.

Cut Through the Clutter

Because of the lack of competition in direct mail and the fact that people are accustomed to digital marketing, a piece of physical mail stands out. This means your brand and messaging have a better chance of capturing attention.

Tactile = Memorable

Similar to the tangible engagement mentioned earlier, the tactile quality of direct mail makes it impactful. Not only does physical mail increase the period of interaction, but it also engages multiple senses: sight, smell, touch, and even sound as you open the envelope. This creates a deeper connection with the recipient and makes the material more memorable.

Lots of Options

You can also use B2B direct mail in various creative and unique scenarios, such as sending samples or demos of products, branded swag, handwritten notes to show appreciation, or delivering high-value printed assets like brochures and reports.

How to Leverage Effective Direct Mail Marketing Campaigns

Because direct mail marketing can suit many scenarios, it offers valuable and varied opportunities to engage with clients. This can help businesses stand out from the competition and foster strong connections between a brand and its customers. Some major brands have utilized this to their advantage. A great example of a creative and impactful direct mail B2B campaign was HubSpot’s “INBOUND Rocks” vinyl records. They sent imaginatively designed audio records containing customer success stories to crucial B2B clients. This campaign combined nostalgia and personalization, making it memorable and effective.

Let’s look at some examples of when and how you can use direct mail marketing:

  • When you meet potential clients or partners at industry events, direct mail provides a tangible way to follow up and make a lasting impression. Sending a well-crafted direct mail piece can help your brand stand out in their memory.
  • Digital communication may sometimes fail to reach certain individuals or teams due to email bounces or lack of opt-ins. Direct mail becomes the bridge to establish contact and deliver your message effectively.
  • After a productive business development meeting, sending a handwritten thank-you note through direct mail demonstrates your appreciation and professionalism. It adds a personal touch that digital messages can’t replicate.
  • Direct mail can be a powerful re-engagement tool when a customer or prospect has fallen off your radar. A carefully crafted direct mail campaign can reignite their interest and bring them back into your sales funnel.

The Dos and Don’ts of B2B Integrated Marketing

Ready to Jump into Direct Mail Marketing in 2023?

Direct mail marketing is not only enduring but thriving in the digital age, offering unique opportunities for businesses to engage with their audience on a personal level. By incorporating direct mail into your B2B marketing toolkit, you can effectively enhance your outreach, strengthen relationships, and achieve your business objectives.

If you’re ready to take the leap and begin producing hard-hitting direct mail pieces that work with your digital efforts, Sagefrog can help.

Whether you’re a seasoned marketer or just beginning to explore the possibilities of direct mail, our team of experts is here to help you achieve your marketing objectives.

Contact Sagefrog today to explore how we can tailor a direct mail campaign that aligns with your brand’s goals and takes your marketing efforts to the next level.

Contact Sagefrog!