With widespread adoption of full-color digital presses in the commercial printing industry, personalization has been enabled to create one-to-one marketing communication to enhance the effectiveness of print media advertising. Prior researches showed an increase in response rates with data-driven personalized direct mailings. However, the impact of image personalization on response rate of direct mail advertising is still unknown. This research used an experimental design to test the impact of image personalization on response rate of direct mail advertising. A direct mail postcard campaign was created with three levels of personalization (black-and-white name-only personalization, full-color name-only personalization, full-color name and image personalization) to test the hypothesis that there are no statistically significant differences between the response rates of direct mail advertising with name-only personalization and with image personalization. The Cost Per Response (CPR) for three levels personalization was also observed. The experimental results showed that the response rates for postcard with full-color name and image personalization was 2.6%, and 3.0% for full-color name-only personalization. There were no statistically significant differences between the two levels personalization. Black-and-white name-only personalization postcard turned out to be the most cost effective direct mail advertising with a CPR of $20.50 USD, lower than both full-color name-only personalization ($26.33 USD), and full-color name and image personalization ($30.07 USD) postcard in this case. The reasons for observing these results include consumer behavior towards personalized direct mail, advertising objective, postcard design, product category, timing, and limitations of the experiment. Based on the results, commercial printing companies, especially those provide marketing services need to make a Return-On-Investment (ROI) analysis before recommending the direct mail advertising campaign involving image personalization.
Library of Congress Subject Headings
Advertising, Direct-mail--Research; Target marketing--Research; Consumer behavior--Research
Wang, Dandan, "Impact of image personalization on response rate of direct mail advertising" (2010). Thesis. Rochester Institute of Technology. Accessed from
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