Direct Marketing, Mail Order, and E-commerce News from the National Mail Order Association

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Direct Mail is Read by 32 Percent More Women Ages 25-44 Than E-Mail Advertising

2007 Vertis Communications Customer Focus Survey Analyzes Effectiveness of Direct Mail

Vertis Communications today announced the results of its proprietary Customer Focus Direct Mail study, which indicates that 85 percent of women ages 25-44 read printed direct mail marketing pieces, despite the influx of electronically generated advertisements throughout the past decade. Additionally, the study reveals that 53 percent of all women surveyed ages 25-44 who have access to e-mail, read e-mail advertisements, consistent with the 54 percent that did so in 2005.

While technology has significantly affected the way we work, communicate and socialize with each other on a daily basis, we find some types of technology such as e-mail marketing to be most effective when they are used in conjunction with traditional methods of grabbing consumers attention, said Jim Litwin, vice president of market insights at Vertis Communications. With the evolution of production technology, marketers now have the tools to develop highly personalized campaigns. We recommend they take full advantage of these in order to create more advanced, dimensional marketing pieces such as printed advertising inserts and direct mail that have proven effective in connecting with target audiences on a personal level.

Furthermore, Vertis study indicates marketers can increase the effectiveness of their direct mail campaigns by offering target consumers exclusive deals and coupons. Seventy-two percent of total adults surveyed said they have replied to direct mail containing a buy one, get one free offer. Additionally, 63 percent of all adults indicated the have responded to direct mail collateral offering a percentage discount on merchandise, up from 54 percent in 2005.

The Vertis Communications Customer Focus 2007 survey series also includes findings from the financial, credit card, insurance, publishing, casino gaming, retail, and automotive industries. The Direct Mail study revealed the following additional results:

Direct Mail Response Rates Significantly Higher Among Hispanics

  • Total adults who responded to direct mail via in-store visits, Web sites, 800 numbers or mail remains steady, with 47 percent in 2003 and 46 percent in 2007.
  • While total adults remain flat, the number of Hispanics who responded to direct mail marketing jumped drastically, from 38 percent in 2003 to 54 percent in 2007.

Personalized Follow-up Communication More Effective Than Sending Generic Information

  • 57 percent of women ages 35-64 prefer that companies they express interest in, send follow-up communication through direct mail pieces personalized to their needs.
  • In comparison, 38 percent of men 35-49 prefer generic direct mail when being contacted by a company in which they have expressed interest
  • While 45 percent of total adults are open to receiving personalized, follow-up e-mails, younger men and women seem to be more responsive to this medium, with 52 percent of men ages 25-34 and 56 percent of women the same age stating e-mail is an acceptable form of follow-up communication
  • The survey indicates text messaging to be the most desired method of follow-up communication in younger men ages 18-24, with 23 percent desiring contact via text message from a company they are interested in, compared to 5 percent of women the same age.

Consumers More Comfortable Providing Credit Card Information Online

  • Comfort levels of adults providing credit card numbers online have increased throughout the years, with 42 percent of total adults being very or somewhat comfortable in 2007, up from 32 percent in 2003.
  • Conversely, 40 percent of total adults in 2007 indicate they are not at all comfortable providing credit card information online, down from 52 percent in 2003.

About Customer Focus

Customer Focus is Vertis Communications proprietary annual study tracking consumer behavior across a wide variety of industry segments financial, credit cards, insurance, publishing, casino gaming, retail, automotive and media including advertising inserts, direct marketing, and the Internet. The survey was first conducted in 1998 and, in subsequent years, has been expanded and modified to identify emerging consumer behavior patterns and track shifts in consumer practices and motivations.

Since its inception, Customer Focus has proven to be one of the nations most comprehensive examinations of consumer behavior. The survey of 2,500 adults conducted via phone by one of the nations leading field research companies in August/September 2006 measures both general and industry-specific shopping trends, and Vertis provides the significant data as a value-added service to its clients.

About Vertis Communications

Vertis Communications serves as marketing partner to many of todays Fortune 500 companies. Vertis Communications leverages its vast experience in managing large, complex, time-sensitive assignments to turn its clients marketing ideas into realities. Headquartered in Baltimore with more than 100 locations nationwide, Vertis Communications offers world-class consulting, creative, research, direct, media, technology, and production services. Fortune magazine recognized Vertis as one of the "Most Admired Companies" in Marketing and Advertising in 2005, and as the third largest Advertising company in 2006. To learn more, visit www.vertisinc.com.

This press release may contain forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. The words believes, anticipates, expects, estimates, plans, intends, and similar expressions are intended to identify forward-looking statements. All forward-looking statements are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from projected results. Factors that may cause these differences include fluctuations in the cost of raw materials we use, changes in the advertising, marketing and information services markets, the financial condition of our customers, actions by our competitors, changes in the legal or regulatory environment, general economic and business conditions in the U.S. and other countries, and changes in interest and foreign currency exchange rates.

Consequently, you should consider any such forward-looking statements only as our current plans, estimates, and beliefs. Even if those plans, estimates, or beliefs change because of future events or circumstances, we decline any obligation to publicly update or revise any such forward-looking statements.

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