A new Royal Mail development has brought sending direct mail and promotional gifts into the digital age.

Moving forward, companies will be able to 'digitally watermark' their mail so that when people scan it with their smartphone they are taken straight to a company's website and social networking page.

The move is one of several measures being implemented to make sure that direct mail can compete with online marketing and is sure to prove popular with companies wanting to send their potential customers promotional gifts.

“This solution combines the strengths of the post and the internet. Digital watermarking technology means that a leaflet or mailing can open the door to a journey in the online world. By using this technology, businesses can ensure their mail campaigns are as effective as possible,” commented Dave Smith, Royal Mail's chief customer officer.

A recent study by the Print Industries Market Information and Research Organization found that direct marketing's share of ad spend has increased over the past decade, suggesting there will be plenty of companies interested in the new initiative.

1 Royal Mail becomes world’s first postal company to offer digital watermarking, 9/05/2011

Posted by Robin McCrink