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For better financial decisions, paper could be the answer

Behavioural testing shows that people actually grasp figures on paper better than online – with electronic statements being less well understood.

A recent behavioural economics study by London Economics – conducted on behalf of the Keep Me Posted (KMP) campaign, reveals that people understand information better when they receive mail by post.

Participants completed an online survey on their attitudes to mail. They also completed behavioural experiment questions relating to the bank statement and notice they received.

The behavioural test required respondents to retrieve, recall and assess information contained in the bank statement and notice of changes, and then identify the correct course of action to take.

Despite people’s perception that electronically received bank statements are better than paper statements in terms of helping them managing their finances, the behavioural experiment revealed that the opposite is true.

The results of the test show that people are more likely to understand information and make better financial decisions when they receive information by post rather than electronically.

• For example, people were more than twice as likely to correctly identify how much money was in their account if they received the statement by post… 82% vs 32% who receive statements online.

• In addition, more than two-thirds (71%) of people who were sent the bank statement by post correctly identified the value of the largest payment into their account, compared to less than one-third (30%) of those who received an electronic statement.

Paper statements also enabled people to work out more effectively whether accounts were being well-managed. 75% who received the statements by post correctly assessed the health of the account, compared to less than half – 48% – of those who received an electronic statement.

Source: Post Impressions published by

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Postal rates – Changes and charges

Postal rates and charges have changed more in the last 2 years than in any time since the first introduction of the ‘penny black’

Want to check on the cost of postage for a mailing and the options you have? Then go to

Choose your product options, delivery speed, quantity and type of mailing (letter, large letter or parcel). Find Price will give you estimated costs for the different options you have chosen.

All of the quoted costs exclude VAT which is standard rated.

Using a Down Stream Access (DSA) supplier can be very beneficial to charities with speedier delivery and possible cost savings. We are happy to discuss how we can help your organisation. Call us on 01903 241975 for a free consultation or contact us here.

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Charities increasing their spend on Direct Mail

Charities seem to agree that their fundraising budgets are best spent on direct mail and television – and that digital holds less attraction for them than for many advertisers.

According to reports issued towards the end of last year, UK charities spent £349m on Advertising in 2014 – with 61% of the total going on direct mail.

The research (by nfpSynergy) involved analysing charities advertising spend over the past eight years.

The results showed:

  • Last year, UK charities spent the second highest amount in the last eight years on advertising: a total of £394.4m, which was just under the £400m spent in 2011.
  • It also found that the majority of charities spend most of their advertising budgets on direct mail: In 2013, they spent £238.9m; an average of 69% of their total spend since 2006.

The report also highlighted the interesting fact that UK charities spend just 2% of their advertising budgets on internet ads.

This is a percentage that has only risen by 1% since 2006. Whereas in the rest of the advertising industry, spend on internet advertising has continued to increase since 2010. In 2013 internet advertising was worth 46% (£14 billion) increasing by 29% since 2006.

Over the years, charities have regularly turned to direct mail as a cost-effective route to market.

However, charities must be careful when creating direct mail shots to ensure that their data is up-to-date. In 2014, it was also reported that direct mail is the most complained about charity tactic.

The report also notes that charities are continuing to increase their spend on television advertising by 20% – spending £77.1m in 2013. Clearly, this suggests that the sector is not frugal with their advertising budgets and instead find that television and direct mail advertising in particular offer best return on investment.

The full report is available from

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Still crazy for Direct Mail… after all these years

The only marketing study of what consumers do and what marketers think they do, shows more people opening and reading direct mail especially from known names.

The 10th annual fast MAP Marketing Gap Tracker confirmed the enduring appeal of direct mail.

This is the only marketing study which tracks both consumer and marketer opinion and highlights the gap between what consumers are doing and what marketers think they are doing.

Since 2005, it has been tracking changes in consumer response to marketing initiatives and promotions and monitoring whether marketers are keeping pace with these changes.

  • The good news is that more people open and read direct mail now – 82% – than last year (78%)
  • And 36% will read mail from any company not just the ones they know: 6% more than last year.

What prompts people to open their mail? Since the launch of the study back in 2005, there has been no change in the top three reasons why people open and read mail.

  • Contact from known brands and companies which is up 4% year-on-year to 55%
  • Personally-addressed items at 52%, which is up by 5% from 2013
  • Information about products or services of interest at 46%, up by 6%

Marketing departments should also be encouraged by the fact that 1% more people open mail because of the design, colour or because it looks interesting. And consumer’s enthusiasm for supermarket mail shots has increased year on- year yet again to 45%.

This was in response to the survey question: “When you receive advertising mail from the following types of companies which would you be likely to open straight away?”

Travel and holidays, home/garden/furniture/clothes and banking and credit card mailings have also increased their popularity since 2013.

The full report is available from