I get this question all the time and for many of us the answer seems obvious, but not everyone is two decades into this like we are.
To keep it short and to the point, it really just depends on the offer and the list.
I know that sounds obvious, but if the list used is composed of prospects who have never seen your product or service, the response rate will be cut 75% or more due to lack of brand trust and awareness. You need to mature that kind of list properly.
If the list is of your current customers, it will then come down to how good the offer is. Too often people water down an offer just in case everyone responds. They won’t! It’s a numbers game – so keep your offers’ value high and your responses will be high.
Direct mail is considered to be a half percent to 10% average response tool. I have gotten an 87% response rate with a client, though. That was a 2 for 1 buffet offer to a special new neighbors list we built.
It’s an art my friend, get the right team.