Over a period of 18 months, Royal Mail MarketReach has conducted a series of research projects to understand what physical communication in form of advertising mail means for consumers and ultimately for businesses. A combination of traditional and new methods of market and media research were used, including ethnography, quantitative and neuroscience research, interviews and analysis.

To build this complete and comprehensive view of ways in which mail impacts consumers, eight separate strands of research were conducted. Aside from analysis of 416 cases within the IPA Effectiveness Awards Databank, 401 cases within BrandScience’s Results Vault (one case covers a year’s worth of data for one client) and analysis of over 1,000 academic articles, the primary research within The Private Life of Mail included:

  • 12 households covered within ethnographic work including CCTV in participants’ homes
  • 14 focus groups and 99 in-depth interviews
  • 213 participants within neuroscience and tactility work
  • 9,504 respondents across telephone and online quantitative surveys.

The key learnings from this report pertain to how mail flows after it’s delivered, emotional and neuro-scientific aspects and, lastly, to business value it was proven to drive. In short, mail is powerful. Access the complete report here.

A multichannel campaign launched to promote the report, involved various marketing industry's experts who endorsed the use of a simple, but powerful medium - a piece of paper delivered to the letterbox. Below, the Mailmen campaign video.