Junk Mail Doesn't Work Anymore
Updated: Jul 22, 2019
The picture above is the inside of my recycling bin. It sits outside my back door, and every time I go to the mailbox, this is the closest that 95% of my inbound mail ever gets to the inside of my home.
I say this at the risk of alienating some talented, creative and dear professionals in this field, but why the heck do marketers keep bombarding us with this crap? What an incredible waste of money and resources.
I represent the upper end of that pesky millennial cohort that keeps "killing" beloved American institutions. I get that we're notoriously fickle and hard to target with marketing initiatives. But if we, as a generation, can manage to kill off the junk mail marketing industry, I'll pat myself on the back and enjoy a nice slice of avocado toast.
Here's the thing about millennials. While media coverage has been busy portraying us as a bunch of inscrutable kids, we graduated college. We got our first, second and third jobs. We got married and procreated and bought houses.
And just like that, most millennials are between the ages of 22 and 37. Anyone who hasn't adjusted their marketing strategies accordingly is likely wasting a significant proportion of their budget.
Because we don't read junk mail. I don't even let it into my house, and (out of spite) I go out of my way to forget the advertising messages I do see when I'm standing over the recycling bin.
It's nothing personal. In this era, we just have too many options when it comes to information consumption, and we're not going to waste bandwidth on something that's not interesting to us.
That's why, in my opinion, the most effective marketers have thrown so much effort into content marketing initiatives. Thought leadership articles, blogs and (of course) podcasts meet your audience where they are, at their leisure. If you provide them something useful or entertaining, they'll even do the legwork for you, sharing your content (and your brand!) with their friends.
It's why I think modern marketers face a stark choice in 2019--provide your audience with something of value, or wind up in the recycling bin.