IP Targeting & Direct Mail Tracking: The Marketing Equivalent of Shooting Fish in a Barrel

EAG, December 16, 2020

“Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted; the trouble is I don’t know which half.” John Wanamaker

We use that quote a lot. You’ll find it on our website and in our proposals. Our job as an outsourced marketing agency is to make sure our clients aren’t wasting a cent, much less half, of their advertising budgets. Some marketers insist that not all marketing efforts are measurable. Indeed, there is a case to be made for “brand awareness,” which is tricky to quantify.

But, even brand awareness tactics can pique curiosity and entice people to engage with your business, be it a website form submission or an old-school phone call. The point is that there are tools and tactics to get your business directly into your target audience’s line of sight in both the physical and digital worlds.

Let’s start with the digital world and IP targeting.

What Does IP Targeting Mean?

IP targeting means we use your target audience’s IP addresses as the bull’s eye for our digital marketing.

An IP address is like a phone number, but for devices. Every device has an IP address assigned to it and each one is unique. The internet service provider (ISP) the device owner uses assigns the IP address. Each network has numbers designated to the ISP, and also the device connected to it has its own IP address, so the IP address is dependent on where the device connects to the web.

Like sending direct mail to specific zip codes, IP targeting lets us serve digital ads to people using specific IPs—in other words, networks found within a specified area of physical addresses. These digital ads show only to certain homes or businesses in your target audience – so if your prospects are online, they are seeing your ad.

For example, Family Center Farm & Home in Ozark, Mo is within “throwing” distance of Lambert’s Café, the one and only home of the throwed rolls. Diners can experience quite a wait for a table, and what do people do when they wait? They look at their phones. Our digital marketing team created digital ads and used IP targeting to narrow down the audience to Lambert’s Café’s physical address. Including an online coupon meant we could track how many people made a purchase at Family Center Farm & Home because of our ad, and the campaign was a huge success.

The IP targeting tool EAG uses has a GeoFraming targeting technology, allowing us to capture devices’ ID numbers in places where your target audience is found – for example, at an industry conference, where they work, where they shop, where they eat, where they go for entertainment or where they go to school. Like IP targeting, GeoFraming sets a geographic perimeter around a location. Once your target area is defined, this technology identifies any devices that were used in the area in the past six months.

Our digital marketing team then creates relevant, compelling digital ads that are served to your prospects that have visited the specified area. For example, we’ve used this tool for clients who attended industry conferences and trade shows. Even after the attendees return home, they continue seeing ads from our clients.

What Does Direct Mail Tracking Mean?

Direct mail is not dead. In fact, it outperforms all digital marketing channel response rates. The average response rate for direct mail sent to your current customer mail list is 9% (up 173% since 2006) and 5% to your prospect list (up 194% since 2006). What that proves is that touch, putting your business in people’s hands, matters.

The key for tracking results is to include response channels like 800 numbers, custom URLs, or even QR codes. If sending direct mail to several defined areas or industries, we can associate a specific 800 number and unique landing page with each. That way, if one direct mail piece or area has a higher response rate than others, we know where the bull’s eye truly is and can supplement with IP targeting.

Using direct mail tracking, we know:

  • When your direct mail piece is expected to be in mailboxes
  • When delivery is confirmed for each address with a Street View from Google Maps

The DMA reports that businesses see a 28% average increase in conversion rate when direct mail and digital ads are used together. Well-timed digital and social media ads served near the time direct mail is received increase conversion rates and sales.

What is USPS’s Informed Delivery®?

Informed Delivery is a USPS service that gives customers a digital preview of the mail they’re about to receive. Approximately 30 million postal customers have signed up for Informed Delivery with about one million more joining every month. Of those who signed up, 86% review their notifications.

Take advantage of Informed Delivery by using it as another touch point with your direct mail audience. A digital ad with an offer can be shown along with the preview of your direct mail to be delivered. For example, if you mail a catalog, Informed Delivery allows you to display a special offer when recipients check their mail preview.

IP Targeting and Direct Mail Tracking Zero In on Your Target Customer

Sure, you could cast a wide net of digital ads and direct mail pieces in hopes of landing a few interested prospects, but that would be wasting your advertising budget. With IP targeting, direct mail tracking and an outsourced marketing company with the tools and tactics to target your perfect audience, you can land the big fish easier.

 

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