There are many methods of communicating with your target. Direct marketing is a strategy in which the company will communicate directly, without intermediary with its potential customers. It’s a way of establishing proximity and a feeling of transparency with your audience. What is Direct Marketing? What are the benefits of such a strategy? What are the different techniques to use for direct marketing? How to do this strategy? Discover in this article everything you need to know about direct marketing strategies, to apply it in your business.

What is Direct Marketing? Definition

As its name suggests, direct marketing is a method of communicating with prospects, which aims to remove any intermediary between the company and the customer . The goal is to address the customer directly, in a personalized way, and to obtain quick and easily measurable results.

Definition of direct marketing

It is possible to use this method within the framework of an estimate, an appointment, or even directly for a purchase or a trial period for example.

Why do direct marketing? Goals

1 – Improve the customer relationship

The first objective of direct marketing is to create a solid customer experience, with a direct relationship. This is valid for potential customers, but also for people who have already made a purchase with your company.

Acquire new customers

First of all, it’s an effective way to get new customers for your company. Direct interaction is bound to create interest and reaction . Of course, this has limits, you should not contact everyone at random. Either way, the person is bound to have a reaction, positive or negative. It is therefore a way of imposing itself as a solution in the minds of prospects.

Loyalty and customer experience

For those who are already a customer and convinced that you are a solution, there are other interests. By contacting them directly, this is an opportunity to show them that they are important to you . The task is all the more simple since you already have a lot of information on people who are already customers. You will therefore be able to propose a communication that sticks even more to the person, and have a better chance of succeeding in making a purchase.

2 – Increase sales with a more effective method

Logically, the objective is to increase the number of sales, with customers and prospects. This method is effective since you will be directly addressing targeted people who are potentially interested in what you are offering.

The effectiveness is much higher than Outbound Marketing methods for example, in which you will target a wide range of people, not necessarily interested. The cost will also be lower as well, you will not put your means in a vacuum.

Increase sales with direct marketing

The personalization of communication, which is found in direct marketing, also plays a huge role in its effectiveness. It is first necessary to acquire contacts before being able to take action (cf Hamon law in 2014), but the results will be more positive. For example, you can personalize the messages according to their age, their job, their name, or any other information you have about them.

3 – An easily measurable strategy

Finally, the last objective is related to measuring the success of operations. A direct marketing campaign produces a lot of data, very important for judging the turnover it will produce. Whether it is a call, an email, an SMS or other, these levers make it possible to precisely follow the actions that will result from it using KPIs (key performance indicators).

What are the techniques and tools of direct marketing? 5 examples

marketing automation

Marketing automation is a powerful direct marketing lever. Concretely, the goal is to automate marketing actions where the human has little added value . For example, this marketing automation software allows you to schedule the sending of personalized emails when prospects follow a certain scenario. If we combine this with a Lead Scoring feature, we can easily imagine sending an email requesting a quote when the prospect is “mature” enough to be contacted.

In other words, this means of communication, which applies to emailing, SMS, and more, can automate part of direct marketing. Obviously, the level of personalization will be lower than with a handwritten email, but it remains an effective lever to use your contact file directly.


Communication by email is a very inexpensive way to communicate directly with customers or prospects. In addition, an email address is relatively easy to obtain.

Use emailing for direct marketing


You won’t find a more direct means of communication than SMS. Mobile marketing allows for a higher engagement rate, but you have to be careful not to become intrusive. If we compare to e-mails, the SMS is almost certainly opened, but can be badly perceived by the recipient, because it is a “private” communication network.

The mail

This method may seem outdated when you see all the digital means, but it can be relevant depending on the audience you are targeting. For example, if you are targeting the elderly, who are much less present on digital tools, you could use the mail for your direct marketing campaign. However, mail is significantly more expensive than email marketing.

Other techniques

Here are some other examples of tools you could use in your direct marketing campaign:

  • Phone call
  • Chatbots
  • Personalized retargeting campaign

How to do direct marketing? 4 tips

Define your targets well

the first and most important thing to do is define who the targets are. In marketing, this is the element that will influence all of your decisions. And, as in direct marketing, the personalization of the message plays a fundamental role, the targets are all the more important.

The right thing to do to facilitate this phase is to create personas . In concrete terms, these are fictitious characters whose purpose is to represent your different types of targets. The ideal, when you launch a direct marketing action, would be to prepare the content as if you were sending it to this persona . Whether for an email or a phone call, the operation is the same.

Choosing the right targets with direct marketing

Personas will allow you to do initial personalization work, which can be completed on a case-by-case basis with the different information you have in your database.

Have a solid database

Another essential aspect for a successful direct marketing campaign is the database you have. The more it will be provided, the more you will be able to push the personalization of your communication.

To build a solid database, it will take time. As a reminder, you cannot contact someone for commercial purposes without their consent since the Hamon law in 2014. You must therefore go through means to attract leads and retrieve their contact information. For example, you could set up an Inbound Marketing strategy in which you would offer high value-added content on your website in exchange for the email. In any case, it is a long-term job, but well worth it.

Personalize the message as much as possible

To optimize your chances of positive results, it is better to personalize your messages. This is a step not to be missed to score points in the hearts of your targets. Thanks to all the data you will have at your disposal in your database, the work will be facilitated. Regardless of the distribution channels used, this should not be overlooked.

Choose the most relevant tool

Finally, you must also use the right communication technique to contact your target. You first face a first restriction on this point: the data in your possession. If this information leaves you the choice between several means of communication, you will have to choose the most relevant in relation to the typology of the target, but also in relation to the maturity of the prospect .

For example, someone who has already had repeated contact with your company will take a phone call or an SMS better than someone who is just discovering your brand, since these are “intimate” channels. On the other hand, the email will be effective in almost all situations. We can also take the example of the elderly, who do not necessarily have a digital presence. You will have to contact them by mail or telephone.