The group says the decline was largely the result of marketers seeking “to enhance relevance through improved targeting techniques”.
In its latest annual door drop advertising expenditure survey, the DMA found volumes of door dropping have contracted at a faster pace than spend. Expenditure on the technique fell by 5% to £277m.
The report attributes the decline to improved use of client data, the growth in digital advertising, the current economic climate and a reduction in the free newspaper circulation base.
Mark Young, chair of the DMA Door Drop Council, says: “The marked difference in the decline in volume and spend is a clear indication of the increasing sophistication of door-to-door media. The current economic situation has impacted spend across all media but this research paints a clear picture of clients using door drops as a strategic and tactical tool in a targeted and responsible manner.”
The research reveals the number of door drop communications delivered to UK households on an average week has fallen by a quarter, from 9.1 items in 2005 to 6.8 items in 2008.
The survey measures door drop volume and advertising spend for communications material distributed on a commercial basis, including leaflets, catalogues, newsletters and product samples for commercial organisations, local authorities, charities and central government. The DMA was unable to provide a forecast for 2009.
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