July has, for years now, seen us publish our 6 month door drop volume review.

Within the review we look at market volumes, market share and business sectors based upon our own analysis.

The DMA’s 2019 report is due to be published in August and my guess is that volumes will be slightly down on 2018’s 3.78 items per week average, which compared against our average of 5.

At TLC towers, we entered 2020 full of optimism, following a successful 2019 which included several major account wins and the general market seemed buoyant, so there was no reason to suspect any major changes to our fortunes or the industry’s.

But, the 6-month review is really two 3-month reviews, which are very, very different.

At the end of March, our analysis stood at 4.2 items per week and with Easter this year falling in April, that may have been the subtle difference between matching 2019’s 5 items per week at that point.

Fast forward to the end of June and the gulf is significant, with the overall average just about reaching 3, nearly 30% less activity.

And had it not been for local businesses returning to the market throughout June in increasing volumes as the weeks ticked by, the gap would be even larger.

Of the 79 items recorded in this 6 month period, 59 or 75% were on a solus or shared basis, with the remaining 20 items or 25%, through Royal Mail door to door.

But a 3-month split by distribution type makes interesting reading.

Solus/shared drops in the first 3 months were 37 items/67%, but the second 3 months show 22 items but 92% market share.

In comparison to historical results, Royal Mail’s market share has not reduced significantly, but its staggering that in the second quarter we have only received 2 items through Royal Mail, one of those a Covid related drop from Hertfordshire County Council.

It’s interesting to note that as lockdown started to ease, the local market sprang to life with an average of 4 items per week in the last 3 weeks of June.

Retail continues to lead the business sector split with 38% share, charity bags (no paper items at all) 24% and local businesses at 17% lead the way, with direct response at 13% and a partly Covid fuelled public sector with 8%.

The industry is now entering the historically quieter Summer season, but will this season be the same?

If the nation is in staycation mode rather than foreign travel, will advertisers reach out to engage.

Do outdoor leisure providers and the hospitality sector need to advertise; well yes in a word.

Large swathes of the public are still cautious about venturing out and will seek re-assurance of their safety. How better to provide those assurances that in a printed format that may also guide them through new processes they need to adhere to as a customer or visitor.

And of course there will also be many people still uncertain about even venturing out, so encourage them to purchase and engage with a well written and produced leaflet or brochure.

Engagement? When it lands on the doormat, somebody has to pick it up and see it and there are large swathes of people at  home at present!

Over to you!