3-D PURL Receives 17.24% Response

Infinity Direct created a self-promotion campaign around a fictitious character named Dr. Garmont.  Recipients of the extremely creative campaign could visit their PURL to see how their marketing “ailments” could be cured.

This 3-D direct mailer received an impressive 17.24% response rate, a response Infinity Direct didn’t think a flat piece could have achieved.

It is also important to note that this was part of a larger marketing campaign that lasted for 4 months and consisted of direct mail, website, game, movie, and triggered email. Response rates like this don’t come easy!

3D PURL Campaign

Infinity Direct is not associated with Purlem in any way.  Just a great example of a Personalized URL Campaign that we can all learn from.

PURLs Power ScottishPower Retention Campaign

ScottishPower is a major utility company in the UK.  Like most utility companies in the UK, they experience a large attrition rate (those that cancel after signing up). ScottishPower needed a campaign that would help establish rapport with their existing customers and bring down that attrition.

So ScottishPower turned to PURLs to help establish this rapport.  They sent new customers a personalized email and welcome pack, both conting a Personalized URL (PURL).

The PURL Landing Page provided the visitor with relevant account information. It also had a quick two question survey with an incentive “prize” if they completed a longer survey.

The campaign shows that PURLs can do much more than provide a little lift in response rate.  They can also be very powerful in establishing rapport with customers/clients.

PURL Landing Page

The Results

  • 40% access rates to the PURLs
  • 64% e-mail click-through to PURL rates.
  • 81% drop in sales cancellations within the first 14 days of service
  • 39% reduction in new customer attrition

Purlem is not associated with ScottishPower in any way.  Just another great PURL campaign that I thought we could all learn from.
Case Study provided by PODi.  Download the entire case study free for a limited time.

How HP Used PURLs

Hewlett-Packard used to send out a catalog of courses they offered to IT pros.  It was a large catalog, that was becoming increasingly expensive to send out.  Back in 2003, Hewlett-Packard decided to switch to an online version of the catalog.  To drive people to the catalog, HP used Personalized URLs (PURLs).

HP had a strong list of people who have taken courses in the past.   They sent out an email and postcard, both containing a PURL, that drove people to a landing page.  Once on the landing page, the visitors were provided a “Recommended Class” and encouraged to register.

What I like most about this campaign, was idea to immediately offer a Recommended Class. HP could have very easily just shown the visitors the entire catalog of offerings on the landing page.  But this would have required too many options, and way to much thinking for a landing page.  By offering the Recommended Class, the visitor were provided with one option, and the ability to register right there.  Brilliant!

The Results
HP was expecting a 1-3% response rate, and 3% conversion rate.  The actual results way surpassed expectations. By introducing Personalized URLs into their marketing, HP received a 16.5% response rate from the email,  and 8.7% from the postcard!

But that was not the most impressive statistic.  HP had 31% of visitors actually purchase a course!  That is huge, and I would argue that the “Recommended Class” feature was a large part of this success.

By introducing PURLs, and the personalized landing page, HP generated $556,000 in revenue.

Congrats HP on not only a great PURL campaign, but also a great example for us all to learn from.


The email with Personalized URL

HP PURL Postcard

The Postcard with Personalized URL

HP PURL Landingpage

The PURL Landing Page

Purlem has is not affiliated in any way to Hewlett-Packard or the creation of this campaign.  Simply a great example of a PURL campaign that I thought we could all learn from.  Lear more about this campaign here: http://www.marketingsherpa.com/article.php?contentID=2457

Creative PURL Example

Today I ran across a very creative PURL campaign done by Creative Squall.  See the steps they took to create the campaign on their blog post.

PURL Landing Page

PS. I’m not associated with Creative Squall in any way.  Just a great PURL example that I thought would be nice to share…

PURL Review: LTA Marketing Campaign

The folks over at LTA Marketing asked me to review their recent PURL campaign.   I’m always happy to throw in my two cents, and it’s a great way us all to learn together.  If you have a PURL campaign that you would like me to do a quick review on, email me at mthomas@purlem.com.

For the birthdays of both customers and prospects, LTA will send out an insert (seen below) within an envelope.  The insert encourages the recipient to visit their PURL to receive their drink. The goals of the campaign is to:

  1. Let our current agents know we care
  2. Keep our name in front of them
  3. Capture Email addresses
  4. Capture good phone number
  5. Get an idea of what products they sell (Annuities, Life, LTC, etc)

LTA has been sending out these birthday inserts for the past couple of years with moderate success.  Moving forward they would like to see an increase in their response rates (who wouldn’t!), and focus on capturing email addresses.

Below are some of my suggestions….

First of all, I love the simplicity!  I think that using inserts – as opposed to postcards – is genius for smaller run campaigns such as this!  The amount of money that is saved by using inserts is great, and I also think it adds a little bit of a personal touch.  Maybe, to take it to the next level, actually hand-write the PURLs!  For larger mailings this would definitely not be possible. But when sending out less than 100 mailings, this could be worth testing.

Like the insert, the landing page is also very simple. Not overwhelming the visitor with a bunch of content on the landing page is crucial to a successful PURL campaign, and LTA does a good job of displaying only what is necessary.  I do, however, have a couple of suggestions for imporving the landing page.

  • From an aesthetics standpoint, the paragraphs are running over into the form.  (This is something that could/should be correct in the Purlem template – so it is partly my fault!).  But it would be easy to use a carriage return to make the paragraphs fit within the main content area.
  • I would also like to see the call-to-action stand out a bit more.  Maybe by highlighting the “Simply verify that the information we have on file is correct and we will send you your Starbucks Card!” paragraph.  You want the call-t0-action to jump off the screen so that it is the first thing that the visitor sees.  The way the design is currently setup, the visitor’s eye immediately goes to the Starbucks picture.
  • Finally, I would make the form shorter.  How crucial is it to know what the annual life insurance premium volume is? By asking all of these questions, you are drastically reducing your conversion rate.  If the main goal of the campaign to collect emails, I would have only 1 field – the email field.  The less questions you ask, the higher your conversion rate will be.


PURL Postcard


PURL Landing Page

Rosemont College raised $1,700,000 with PURLs

Rosemont College in Philadelphia launched a PURL Campaign that received a 29% response rate and raised over $1,700,000!

The trick to Rosemont’s college success was building a relationship before asking for money.  Many people jump into PURLs expecting that throwing out a one-hit campaign with pull in the magical response/conversion rates.  They won’t!   The trick – as Rosemont college just proved – is to use multiple touch points (direct mail, email, web, and social media) over an extended period of time (months to years), to first establish a relationship before going in for the kill.

Round 1

The first round for Rosemont college was a email to previous donors.  The emails contained a Personalized URL (PURL) where they could read about current students, complete an online survey about what they had been doing since graduation, connect with Rosemont’s Facebook page, and (ofcourse) make a donation to the College.

Round 2

In the second round, and a series of emails and solicitation letters were sent to alumni and parents.  Both the emails and letters had a PURL to make a donation.

Personalized URL Letter

Round 3 & 4

The final rounds again contained a combination of email and direct mail to past donors and alumni.  A four-color self-mailer was sent to previous donors and young alumni.  A solicitation letter was sent to older alumni.  Again, both version gave instructions to visit the PURL to make a donation.

Personalized URL Self-Mailer

The Results:

  • 29% of recipients (2,361 individuals) vis response to either email or direct mail
  • Over $1,700,000 was raised in donations from 1,123 alumni and parents

Yep – this is one of those PURL campaigns that really gets people excited about PURLs.  I mean… what could your business do with a 29% response rate?  You send out just 100 postcards and 29 people respond!  That is 29 new people interested in what you have to offer.  That is incredible!

But Rosemont College has also shown that there is a lot to making a PURLs work.  This particular campaign spread over 9 months and took a lot of work and coordination to pull it off.  In this case, the hard work paid off with great dividends. Congrats Rosemont College on a great campaign we can all learn from!

You can see the complete case study here (and it’s free for a limited time): PODi Case Studies 

agencyEA received a 7.4% Response Rate from their PURL Campaign

agencyEA, a marketing agency with clients like Boeing, Oprah, McDonald’s and United Airlines recently used a direct mail campaign to drive new client acquisitions and create brand awareness.

The direct mail piece included a Personalized URL (PURL) that drove recepients to a personalized landing page where they could register for a chance to win $500 in airfare.  The campaign was sent out to marketing and communications executives for major corporations in the States.

When visitors completed the survey on their PURL landing page, the received a follow up “thank you” email and were automatically entered to win the $500 airfare.

“We couldn’t be more pleased with the results of this campaign,” said Katie Ellis, VP of Marketing of agencyEA.

The Results

  • 7.4% of recipients visited their PURL
  • 34% of PURL visitors requested further interaction
  • agencyEA was able to collect valuable information about respondents’ needs and budgets for future follow-up, as well as phone and email information.
PURL marketing direct mail

PURL marketing landing page

Case Study: Boelte-Hall Receives 33.5% Response Rate with Personalized URLs

Boelte-Hall, a print service provider in Kansas City, recently used a direct mail campaign to increase traffic to their booth at the Ag Media Summit (AMS).

The first batch of 1,379 postcards were mailed to AMS’ list of previous attendees and prospects for the Summit. The postcards contained a Personalized URL where recipients could schedule a one-on-one meeting with Claudia McCue (an Adobe expert).

Personalized URL Postcards #1

Personalized URL Postcards #1


A second postcard was sent to 498 registered attendees. This postcard also had a Personalized URL where recipients could request a ride from the airport to the show, and enter a drawing for an iPad2.

Personalized URL Postcards #1

Personalized URL Postcards #2


Here is where the campaign got really smart…  Upon visiting the Personalized Landing Page, recipients learned exactly what they needed to do to be eligible to win the iPad2.  Attendees needed to:

  1. Visit each booth and scan a QR Code to receive two questions
  2. Talk to booth staff to receive answers to those questions
  3. Write the answers in the entry blanks of the postcard
  4. Drop the completed postcard off at Boelte-Hall’s booth

Leading up the to Summit, Boelte-Hall also sent two reminder emails to those that did not respond to their Personalized URL through the postcard.

The Results

  • 33.5% response rate – registered attendees visited their Personalized URL and completed an online survey.
  • 44.9% of respondents request more information about cross channel marketing
  • 214 people requested a ride from the airport
  • 66 people entered the drawing for the iPad2
  • 28% Survey Respondents came from the Postcard mailing, 50% from the first email reminder, and 22% from the second email reminder.
  • Boelte-Hall experienced tremendous traffic and lots of conversations with attendees (priceless) 🙂

I find it very interesting that 50% of the survey respondents came from the first email reminder.  This goes to show just how important repeated communication and multiple touch-points are in a campaign.

To see the entire case study visit PODI’s Free Case Studies.

Today I received my first PURL Postcard

Today I received my first PURL postcard.  Well, actually I didn’t receive it – it was addressed to MariKate.  But still exciting to see a local dentist using PURLs.

Overall a solid campaign.  The PURL stood out on both the front and back of the postcard, there was a creative use of variable data printing, and a nice call to action of $50 off your next visit.

However, they didn’t spell her name right – it’s MariKate not Marykate, there is a whole lot of text (My guess is that nobody actually read all of this copy), and when I visited the PURL Landing Page, they were screaming her name “Dear MARYKATE,” – nobody likes to have their named screamed.

If you run across a PURL campaign either in email or through direct mail, please share with us!

PURL Postcard Front

PURL Postcard Back

PURL Landing Page Dentist

AlphaGraphics uses PURLs in their Coconut Campaign

Coconut PURL Campaign

Deliver magazine recently published an article highlighting a PURL Marketing campaign by AlphaGrahics.

Each recipient of the direct marketing campaign received a coconut with a Personalized hangtag with facts about the power of direct mail and a Personalized URL (PURL).  Recipients were encouraged to visit their PURL to be entered to win a gift certificate.

Those that responded to the PURl were mailed an invitation to a marketing wordpres hosted by AlphaGraphics.

  • A whopping 41 percent of recipients completed the online survey after receiving the coconut.
  • 41 of the 200 prospects ended up attending the marketing workshop.
  • The campaign generated a 300% ROI.