Study: Direct Mail Plays Critical Role in Reaching Millennial Voters

May 02, 2016 @USPS

WASHINGTON D.C. — Contrary to common assumptions about digitally connected millennials, a new joint survey demonstrates that young voters pay close attention to political mail and in fact favor it over other forms of political advertising. The survey, conducted by the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) and the American Association of Political Consultants (AAPC), aims to further understand millennials’ attitudes and behaviors toward direct mail in comparison to non-millennials.

“As the much-coveted demographic of 18-to-24-year-olds has grown up with and around computers, focusing exclusively on digital channels seems like the obvious strategy,” said USPS Sales Vice President Cliff Rucker. “What we actually found was that millennials are far more likely than non-millennials to read and engage with direct mail, particularly political mail.”

In this 2016 election cycle, voters under the age of 30 are expected to represent an estimated 20 percent of the electorate in competitive states. The research conducted by USPS and AAPC reveals key insights in the effectiveness direct mail can have in targeting this demographic.

Findings include:

  • Millennials prefer political mail over other forms of political advertising. At least 42 percent of millennials prefer direct mail political ads over online ads, with 38 percent favoring both equally. (Twenty percent prefer online political ads.)
  • Millennials are more likely to read, discuss and use political mail. Over twice as many millennials thoroughly read political mail they receive (40 percent compared to 18 percent for non-millennials.) Additionally, they discuss political mail more with others (78 percent compared to 63 percent) and use mail to remind them when to vote.
  • Political mail prompts millennials take action. Because of political mail, 66 percent of millennials are likely to research the candidate, with 54 percent visiting the candidate’s website.

“With a saturated and competitive political advertising environment in the 2016 election cycle, campaigns will need to maximize opportunities to get the right messages in front of the right audiences at the right time,” said Rucker. “The survey uncovered direct mail as an indispensable part of an omni-channel communications strategy for campaigns of all sizes to reach millennial voters.”

The survey can be found at

The Postal Service receives no tax dollars for operating expenses and relies on the sale of postage, products and services to fund its operations.

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