Sending Direct Mail

Part
01
of four
Part
01

Direct Mail Sending Behavior - Verizon

Although we were unable to find enough information to sufficiently provide information on how often Verizon send out direct emails, our research revealed that Verizon uses direct mail to target current customers and to prospect to new ones in urban and suburban areas. Below, you will find more details.

METHODOLOGY

To find data on direct mail sending behavior of Verizon, we started by extensively searching the company's database, annual reports, and press releases. We were able to find data on if they send direct mail as well as the target of the direct emails which we have reported below.

Next, we searched for interviews the company's executive have granted in the past as well as any job filings in marketing that may have mentioned the need for expertise in direct mail or something similar. We searched sources such as Indeed, LinkedIn, Glassdoor, FlexJobs, Washington Post, New York Times, among others. This research path was productive as we were able to find data on where they are sending direct mail and data on who they were targeting.

We further conducted general media searches in industry and media publications for Verizon's direct mail strategy/tactics and any examples of direct mail creatives they have sent in the past. We also searched for case studies related to any direct marketing campaign the company has done in the past. We searched sources such as Forbes, Fortune, Adweek, Adage, Behance, Target Marketing Mag, among others. There wasn't much information available, hence, we had to expand our search to data older than 24 months. We were able to find some direct mail creatives, as well as an example of additional customer and states in the US the company has targeted in the past.

In all, we were able to find enough information to provide insight on all the requested data, except concrete data on how often the company sends direct emails to people despite an extensive search. We also tried to see if we could find information on the direct mail sending frequency for either Cellular and Xfinity or if there was any industry benchmark but we didn't find the data.

Below, we have presented the information we were able to find.

FINDINGS

1) Who they send direct emails to

We found evidence that Verizon sends direct mail to its current customers, potential customers in its target area or as a means of acquiring new customers, and to lapsed/old customers.

2) Messaging and Creatives

The messaging seems to depend on what is been promoted at the time. We found several creatives with different messages such as "Live on the Edge", "Welcome to the Edge", "Upgrade Faster With Verizon Edge" and "Save with Verizon Edge", "Increase Productivity, Decrease Overhead, Get Your Whole Office Talking for Free," "Switch Back to the Nations Best 3G Network and Conquer A World of Apps".

3) Where they are sending out this direct mail to

Verizon sent this direct mail to the homes and apartment of their customers, and they seem to have particularly targeted those in multiple dwelling units or multifamily apartments with their direct emails. They target customers nationally with direct emails but seem to have focused on customers and potential customers in urban and suburban cities.

4) How Often Verizon Send Direct Mail

After an extensive search, we were unable to find data on the frequency with which Verizon send direct emails, nor was there enough information for us to infer or triangulate the data. Also, we were unable to find information for either Cellular or Xfinity. The reason data is unavailable is likely because such information is considered proprietary.

5) Demographic Information

During our research, we found that Verizon specifically targeted the following demographic for the Verizon FIOS — Integrated Marketing Campaign where direct emails were used as part of the marketing medium:

Gender: Male and Female
Average Income: $46,000+
Ethnicity, Religion, and Race: All
Education: College-educated
Household: 1-2 member households in rental apartments or condos"

However, note that Verizon has also used direct emails to target all its customer base for campaigns that targeted a broader demographic, while others seem to have been targeted to business owners. Hence, it would seem that the demographic the company targets with each direct mail campaign are dependent on the specific product they are promoting at the time.

Part
02
of four
Part
02

Direct Mail Sending Behavior - T-Mobile

T-Mobile targets current customers and businesses with its direct mail advertising. Direct mails are used to inform customers about the offers by T-Mobile, including both the present and upcoming discounts. The messaging of direct mails highlights the objective of the company, which is to change the industry by eliminating streaming limits. However, we could not find information on the targeted geography and the frequency of direct mailing by T-Mobile. Below is a methodology that we used in an attempt to get information relating to the targeted geography and frequency of direct mailing by T-Mobile.

METHODOLOGY

Our first strategy was to check the official company website for press releases that might contain information on direct mail advertising campaigns launched by T-Mobile. We checked press releases within the last two years and expanded our search to several years, but there was no information relating to direct mail advertising campaigns. Most of the press releases only contained information on awards received by the company and its digital advertising efforts.

The second strategy was to check through credible business and advertising publications for the required information. Some of the sources looked at including Bloomberg, NY Times, Forbes, Live Mint, Business Wire, Market Watch, Marketing Daily, Adweek, Adage, Unbounce, and Adland. While these sources contained valuable information on T-Mobile’s advertising, there was no information on its mailing frequency and targeted geographies.

The third strategy was to go through T-Mobile’s social media accounts such as LinkedIn, Instagram, Pinterest, YouTube, Twitter, and Facebook with the aim to find any information on direct mail advertising campaigns. However, we could not find any relevant information on these platforms relating to direct mail campaigns by the company.

We then shifted our search to any reports on T_Mobile operations that have been published by consulting/audit firms. The firms we looked at include JP Morgan, RBS, McKinsey, and Deloitte. While there were reports on the company highlighting its merger with Sprint, its valuation, and its value proposition, there was none that focused specifically on direct mail behavior.

The final strategy was to attempt to triangulate data relating to direct mail advertising by T-Mobile’s competitors such as Boost Mobile, and At &T. Our intention was to check the direct mail behavior of these companies and determine if they can be applied to T-Mobile. However, none of them contained any information on direct mail advertising on their official websites and press releases.

Our conclusion is that the company has shifted its advertising to digital channels; hence there is limited information on direct mail advertising campaigns. As such, we could not get specific details relating to the frequency of these campaigns and their targeted geography.

HOW T-MOBILE SENDS DIRECT MAILS AND WHO RECEIVES THEM

As part of its sustainability initiatives, the use of direct mail advertising by T-Mobile has significantly reduced. The company has shifted its focus to other digital channels to communicate with its customers, and there has not been any recent direct mail advertising by the company. Currently, more than 75% of T-Mobiles clients prefer online billing.

DIRECT MAIL AUDIENCE

The target of direct mail advertising includes both current customers and businesses. The primary objective of direct mail advertising is to create awareness about new products and offers among current and prospective clients. T-Mobile, therefore, uses the platform to highlight its mission of ‘changing business wireless for good’ using the direct mails.

Additionally, Sprint which is set to be merged with T-Mobile is using direct mail advertising to reach out to former clients and bring them back as subscribers with attractive benefits being highlighted in the mails.

MESSAGING BEHIND THE DIRECT MAILS

The main messaging behind the direct mails by T-Mobile is the ‘Uncarrier’ campaign which aims at changing the wireless industry by eliminating data overages and streaming limits. In place of this, the company will streamline its plan options into one unlimited plan.

As such, current customers received emails with the following messaging:
  • Customized offers of free data/call discounts
  • Messages on the company benefits
  • Reward cards are also issued via direct mails

When sending direct emails to businesses, T-Mobile sends a small folder that contains the following information:
  • A statement of T-Mobile’s mission of changing business to become wireless, which implies its desire for businesses to adopt better practices.
  • Information on how the company provides simple locked-in rate plans for its clients and does not lock them into restrictive annual service contracts.
  • The company also mentions that it does not charge any overages, unlike other carriers.
  • Other messaging is based on the three selling points of the company, includes 24/7 service availability, locked-in rates, and advanced business tools.
  • An offer for simple pricing plans, one for ten lines and another for twenty lines.

Sprint is sending direct emails to previous customers in an attempt to get them back, the emails contain the following messaging:
  • The front panel features a “We Miss You” message, that invites past customers to re-connect with 50% savings of the rates offered by competitors.
  • There is an image of a happy family gathered around a tablet, which highlights its message of reconnecting.
  • Information on the discounts offered by the company compared to its biggest competitors AT&T and Verizon, with a statement that it is the biggest offer in US wireless history with no gimmicks.
  • Details of an upgraded network and an offer of $650 switching fee reimbursement.
Part
03
of four
Part
03

Additional Marketing Insights (Large Competitors)

We have analyzed and identified different types of messaging and creatives other than direct mail that are being used by Verizon and T-Mobile. Verizon's messaging revolves around its "reliable network", satisfied customers and staff, mobile phone discounts, and 5G technology. On the other hand, T-Mobile boosts its "wide network coverage", free MLB.TV subscription and data plan discounts. The screenshots and video links to different types of creatives with their specific messaging for both Verizon and T-Mobile are organized in the attached document. Our detailed findings are as follows.

Verizon

Verizon uses several types of messaging and creatives across different mediums to create awareness about the reliability of its network as well as its new products, discounts, offers, and the impact its technology has in the United States. One common message in almost all of its creatives and ads is "being America's most reliable network".

1. DIGITAL STATIC AND FLASH CREATIVES

Verizon's digital creatives include both static and flash/ rollover creatives in the form of promotional social media posts, banner ads, etc. These creatives feature the following messaging:


2. EMAILS

Verizon sends promotional emails to its customers featuring discounts and offers on the purchase of new mobile phones as well as huge discounts on trading in select phones.

3. TV

Verizon runs several TV commercials featuring the following messaging: 

  • Share and live precious experiences with your loved ones using Verizon's network.
  • With its reliable network, Verizon is there for you when it matters the most
  • Discounts and free Apple Music upon switching to Verizon’s reliable network

After a touching story, most of the TV creatives calls out the latest promotion, offer, or discount on the purchase of select phones and/or wireless plans or switching to Verizon.

4. OUT OF HOME (OOH)

Verizon's out-of-home advertising mostly features its "one size doesn't fit all" messaging with cropped out and disorganized words in the creatives.

5. PRINT

Verizon mocked AT&T in its full-page ads in newspapers including The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal by writing, "We won’t take an old phone and just change the software to turn the 4 in the status bar into a 5."

T-Mobile

1. DIGITAL STATIC AND FLASH CREATIVES

T-mobile's digital creatives include both static and flash/ rollover creatives in the form of wireless offers, promotional social media ads/posts, banner ads, etc. These creatives feature the following messaging:


2. EMAILS

Most of the promotional email of T-Mobile comes with a promise of no annual service contract and no overcharges on T-Mobile's super fast 4G LTE Network. Some of the promotional emails of T-Mobile feature the following messaging:


3. TV

T-Mobile's TV spot ads always never fail to amuse the viewers with their interesting themes and messaging styles. T-Mobile wraps up its deals and offers in fun-filled short ads mocking little annoying day-to-day experiences. Some examples are:

  • T-Mobile in its select phone offer TV spot ad acknowledges that viewers get annoyed by ads and hence starts the ad with, “Pardon the interruption, but this is big.”
  • Wherever you are, whatever you are doing, with its 99% coverage across America, T-Mobile Has You Covered.
  • T-Mobile’s free MLB.TV subscription allows its customers to enjoy baseball anytime they want, even from work.
  • T-Mobile ran four fun-filled Super Bowl spot ads featuring phone messaging window. The ads featured T-Mobile's message of "We are here for you", "You can change your carrier", "Get what you want", and "we’ll keep this brief."

4. OUT OF HOME (OOH)

T-Mobile's OOH advertising feature the following messaging:

  • Last year, T-Mobile mocked Verizon in its billboard ads claiming to provide “More data capacity per customer than Verizon.”
  • In another ad, T-Mobile boosts about its network coverage.

5. PRINT

T-Mobile's features its latest limited time promotions and unlimited data offers in newspapers and magazines.


Part
04
of four
Part
04

Additional Marketing Insights (Small Competitors)

We have analyzed and identified types of messaging and creatives other than direct mail that are being used by Boost Mobile and Cricket. Additionally, we have also identified some examples of outdoor advertising by MetroPCS. While Boost Mobile's messaging focuses on acquiring new customers by offering attractive switching offers, Cricket Wireless's messaging is more geared towards "making its existing customers smile" by offering lucrative data plans and free services.

The screenshots and video links to different types of creatives with their specific messaging for the assigned companies are organized in the attached document. Our detailed findings are as follows.

Boost Mobile

Boost Mobile's messaging and creatives revolve around the benefits and discounts, such as free phones, of switching to Boost Mobile. Each digital ad creative of Boost Mobile features a switch/button representing their message to switch to their network.

1. DIGITAL STATIC AND FLASH CREATIVES

Boost Mobile's digital creatives include both static and flash creatives in the form of promotional social media posts and banner ads, etc. These creatives feature the following messaging:


2. TV
Boost Mobile runs several TV commercials featuring the following messaging: 


3. OUT OF HOME (OOH)

Boost Mobile uses billboards, signage, and mobile trucks for its outdoor advertising to convey the following messaging:

Cricket

1. DIGITAL STATIC AND FLASH CREATIVES
The digital creatives of Cricket Wireless include limited static ad creatives as most of its digital creatives are flash creatives. These creatives feature the following messaging:


2. TV
Cricket Wireless runs several TV commercials featuring the following messaging: 


3. OUT OF HOME (OOH)

Cricket Wireless mostly use mobile trucks for its outdoor advertising to convey the following messaging:

MetroPCS OOH Creatives and Messaging

Like Cricket Wireless, MetroPCS in its mobile outdoor ads also claims to have 99% coverage across America. Its mobile truck advertising also features its free phones offer on select data plans of 32 GB.

Sources
Sources

From Part 03