What does direct mail mean to Gen Z?

Is Gen Z always online? 

Gen Z is slowly beginning to age and mature into adulthood and with that Gen Z will be the generation that spends a large portion of the money circulating in the economy within the next decade. As with the evolution of consumer habits marketing will always need to keep up hence organisations are slowly beginning or should be beginning to market their products in a more targeted way to Gen Z.


Our generation grew up much differently than others. We grew up with phones, television, tablets, and the internet all within an arm’s reach from a young age. It is reported that more than 55% of Gen Z admit to using their smartphone 5+ hours a day. This should be emphasised by the fact that over 95% of the generation also has access to smartphones meaning more than half of the entire generation is spending more than 5 hours a day on their smartphones. Gen Z quite truly is “Changing the social landscape. Marketers better take note or they won’t keep up” – Planoly

Direct mail

Reaction and effect of direct mail

Gen Z is very accustomed to and comfortable with experiencing marketing virtually through social media and E-mail particularly due to our large online presence. Despite this only 17% of Gen Z claims to do online shopping through their phones further contributing to the downsides of E-mail and online marketing. Too much of Gen-Z a large portion of online marketing reminds us of the famous Einstein quote on madness.


“The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results” – Albert Einstein 


The reason for this is the sheer frequency and persistence of much online marketing. Bots, spam accounts and generic email newsletters all overwhelm a consumer and lead to them developing a negative outlook toward the organisation that is marketing to them. This is precisely why Direct Mail marketing is ideal for marketing to Gen-Z.


Direct and Personalised mail is something a fraction of Gen-Z experience. Whilst everyone with an E-mail address is receiving multiple personalised emails they still wouldn’t be gripping due to their frequency. The physical nature of direct mail was listed as the root cause of its efficiency according to a WARC study which took place across the UK from 2016-2020.

The psychology behind direct mail

Well, what’s so special about receiving marketing in a physical form? To Gen-Z receiving personalized direct mail is likely to be a slightly foreign or maybe just rare occurrence. To receive a physically tangible piece of mail that is personalised and sent to you is going to make a majority of Gen-Z feel special due to the novelty a new experience provides. 


Novelty marketing has been around since the 1970s and was originally used by toothpaste manufacturers. These manufacturers would incrementally change their product to allow marketers to present said product with a new campaign and new USP on some occasions. The whole theory behind the effectiveness of novelty marketing is that new experiences are novelty. 


By nature and due to our biological limitations novelty is always going to be something humans like and actively seek out. Novelty improves our ability to retain and absorb information much like moving to a new country or neighbourhood, sights, sounds and experiences can all feel very novel, slightly overwhelming and most important novel. This same idea can be applied to receiving direct and personalised mail for the first time. The experience will be memorable for someone in Gen-Z receiving their first personalised direct piece of mail. This would make them more likely to learn something about the organisation’s marketing to them and then put that to memory. Hence, this leads to an overall more effective marketing strategy.

Direct mail


Direct mail marketing, much like other forms of marketing, has a different level of success depending on several factors. In this instance, that factor is a generational difference (age and technology). This is precisely why direct mail can be the most effective marketing strategy for marketing to Gen-Z. Due to the fact that Gen-Z has grown up with technology, e-mail and digital marketing from a young age, it has become a less effective medium for marketing. The magnitude of impact that something refreshing such as direct mail can have on a young Gen-Z mind is remarkable and proves why direct mail marketing can be very effective with younger generations.










Get in touch to learn how Direct Mail can be implemented as part of your marketing strategy to better connect with your clients & attain a higher response