Customers today are bombarded by messages, logos, and slogans. If you want your practice’s marketing to stand out and get people to notice your products and brand over other options available, you need to understand how consumers make purchasing decisions, otherwise known as consumer behavior.
Consumer behavior looks at the many reasons why people buy things and breaks down the steps they take to eventually reach the stage of making a purchase.
Consumer behavior is defined as a set of interactions between emotions, cognitions, actions, environmental elements, and socioeconomic and cultural factors that are related to economic and social exchange processes.1 By understanding consumer behavior, you can utilize marketing strategies to target consumers in different stages of their purchasing journeys.
Direct mail directly influences consumer behavior by reaching people in the discussion and planning stages of the buying cycle. Studies show that nearly 90% of purchase decisions are made after discussions at home, with larger purchases especially being pre-planned and made at home with other members of the household.2
Large or more expensive purchases are known as high-involvement products. These are products that carry a high risk to buyers if they fail, are complex, or have high price tags. These items are not purchased often. Buyers don’t engage in routine response behavior when purchasing high-involvement products. Instead, consumers engage in what’s called extended problem solving, where they spend a lot of time comparing the features of the products, prices, warranties, and so forth.3
This is when direct mail comes in.
A total of 61% of recipients have said that direct mail has influenced their purchase decisions.2 Direct mail drives consideration and engagement, and overall customer interest in your business and brand.
After bringing their mail inside, most people put their mail down in an area that is relatively close to their front door or mailbox, such as on a hallway entry table or kitchen counter. This means that direct mail is much less likely to be susceptible to “out of sight out of mind” efforts.
Sending something personalized is where you have a chance to stand out with a tangible reminder that has the potential to stay within your customer’s or potential customer’s line of vision for extended periods of time. Check out some of Beeman’s unique and effective personalized mail samples here.
Direct mail sets the stage to reach customers in the comparison and decision-making stage of their purchase process. In fact, 89% of key purchase decisions are pre-planned and discussed with others.2
Spouses have the greatest influence on purchase decisions: 73% of consumers agree that their spouse is influential in purchase decisions.2 Another 76% of shoppers discuss relevant mail from a brand or retailer they have purchased from in the past.2