Established 2009

Schooling Direct Mail



The client is a chain of family entertainment centers with broad household name recognition and locations in nine metro markets across the U.S. and Canada. In addition to chain?s signature evening dinner theatre performances, the client also has an afternoon matinee that was designed as a field trip destination for school-age children. One of the matinee campaign?s most important marketing tactics is direct mail postcards.


Five years into the matinee program, the client noticed that sales revenue had become stagnant. After contemplating the issue, management determined that the problem was rooted in a lack of direct mail campaign strategy, specifically:

  • ?Some schools in geographic target areas were receiving an excess of mailers during the course of the performance season.
  • Other schools weren?t receiving mailers at all.


To address these issues and identify other areas of opportunity, the client enlisted the services of MindEcology, a marketing and advertising agency with special expertise in direct mail strategy and management.


After analyzing the previous matinee season?s direct mail campaign, the agency identified a number of additional problem areas. To begin with, there was no identifiable methodology governing which schools in a given location?s trade area should be targeted, or how many contacts per school should be included in each mailing. Nor was there sufficient attention being paid to the types of contact job titles targeted for the mailing. ?Additionally, there was a considerable amount of ambiguity ? if not outright non-existence ? with respect to the campaign?s overall strategy, including reach/frequency ratios and conversion tracking. There were also high degrees of overlap in mailer distribution between the respective sales territories of many of the adjacent locations, leading to confusion for customers and frustration for the client?s area marketing managers. Following the initial analysis, the agency then conducted a MatchPoint? Analytics study in order to develop a predictive marketing model that would serve as the foundation for the new direct mail strategy plan.

Key tactics of the new plan included:

  • Analysis of the school and neighborhood attributes of historically well-responding schools, in order to determine which attributes could be linked with higher conversion rates.
  • Calculation of the correlation between distance-from-school and conversion rates, which helped determine the ideal distance of target schools from the clients nearest location.
  • Identification of proper mailer distribution boundaries among the various schools targeted for the matinee program.
  • Prioritization and ranking of prospect schools based on significant school, neighborhood and distance attributes.
  • Identification of the proper mix of target contact person job titles and identification of a per-school reach/frequency strategy




As a result of application of MindEcology?s MatchPoint?-driven analysis, the matinee program achieved a banner year, earning year-on-year net revenue increase of $1,013,005.

Year-on-year results also improved across all other key direct mail metrics:

  • Sales Per Mailer – Increased from $3.04 to $7.21 per mailer 137% increase in gross sales per mailer.
  • Gross Matinee Revenue Sales – Gross revenue increase of $922,144 – Revenue increase at 8 of 9 market locations 37% total gross revenue increase.
  • Mailer Costs – Reduction of mailer costs for 8 of 9 markets – Net reduction of 227, 154 unnecessary mailers sent Mailer cost savings of $90,861.


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