What is Direct Marketing?

Direct marketing is a method of promoting a product or a service by presenting directly to potential customers.

This is usually conducted on a one-to-one basis in order to generate sales and raise brand awareness.

Why do a Marketing Campaign?

The bottom line is that all companies want to sell more of their products or services to raise revenue, increase their market share and ensure long term survival.
The problem is that in order to make profits from increasing sales a company must choose a strategy that increases sales and profitability above the amount spent on designing and implementing that strategy.

There are, in the main, three aims of any marketing campaign required to promote and sell a product or a service:

  1. Create Impact
  2. Provide Exposure
  3. Generate a Return on Investment


A successful marketing campaign is one that will meet all these main criteria.

So this means a marketing campaign needs to be remembered by the people who see it (Impact), be seen by lots of people (Exposure) and that the income generated from the sales made as a result of that marketing campaign should be greater than the cost of making and producing the campaign (Return on Investment).

Marketing Options

There are, in general terms, two main types of marketing:

  1. Indirect Marketing
  2. Direct Marketing

Indirect Marketing

Campaigns include such things as television and radio commercials as well as newspaper, billboard and magazine advertising.

These campaigns have some draw backs including:

  • They can be expensive
  • There is no precise way of making sure you reach your target audience
  • Cannot guarantee a Return On Investment
  • Rely on the customer to respond/take action
  • Difficult to monitor their effectiveness
  • Inflexible to changes in the market
  • Impersonal
  • Over exposure (thousands of adverts are shown every day) and desensitisation (because there are so many adverts we mentally or physically switch off to them)

Direct Marketing

Campaigns include corporate events and trade shows, business to business and residential marketing, direct mail distribution and telesales. While these campaigns may not garner the attention of more conventional media, they are proactive, flexible, personal and offer measurable results which are key to delivering a return on investment in any business.

These campaigns do not involve the purchasing of media airtime or space, which reduces costs greatly. No one denies that indirect advertising campaigns build brand awareness, make brands famous and have the power to influence sales.

What indirect advertising cannot do is explain about the campaign directly to the customer, talk to them on a face to face basis, answer questions, explain the benefits, get the customer involved and make a sale there and then.

Direct marketing is one of the fastest growing mediums available having established itself as a powerful and effective advertising tool.

The highly targeted nature of direct marketing ensures that campaigns receive the maximum level of response whilst minimising the level of wastage.

Direct marketing gives companies the platform to target virtually every household, public event and business in the UK.

Advantages of Direct Marketing versus Indirect Marketing:

  • Acquisition of new customers
  • Relationships built with a high level of Customer Service (it's personal)
  • No third party advertising - direct to target audience
  • Cost effective
  • Measure the success of campaigns accurately by analysing responses
  • Flexible
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