Porter Airlines uses direct mail to increase sales from loyal customers
The campaign achieved high ROI using Addressed Admail, Lettermail and Expedited Parcel services

The campaign achieved high ROI using Addressed Admail, Lettermail and Expedited Parcel services

Posted on June 16, 2014 by @direct_cpc in Marketing solutions

Canada Post’s Addressed Admail service connects us with our customers in a personalized way.


James Positano, Porter Airlines


To deepen customer loyalty and support their brand message, Porter Airlines developed a direct mail campaign using Addressed Admail™, Lettermail™ and Expedited Parcel™ services. The result? Increased sales with significantly higher ROI than their past mass-market tactics.


Established in 2006, Porter Airlines has quickly grown into a successful regional carrier. With a fleet of 26 turboprop planes based at Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport (formerly Toronto Island Airport), the company provides regular service to more than a dozen cities in Canada, including Ottawa, Montreal and Halifax, and several U.S. cities, such as New York, Chicago, Boston and Washington.

From the outset, Porter has differentiated itself from other airlines by providing all passengers free access to small luxuries such as cappuccino, snacks, Internet service and comfortable, handsomely decorated lounges.

Marketing strategy and challenge

Marketing contributes to Porter’s success by raising awareness of the company’s brand, which is elegantly captured by the slogan “Flying Refined.”

Porter advertises regularly in a wide range of media, including newspapers, magazines, billboards, radio and social media, and occasionally conducts direct-mail campaigns. The company often stages time-limited seat sales; in virtually every case, competing airlines immediately match Porter’s discounted fares.

In 2011, Porter faced a new and significant challenge: find new ways of connecting with its loyal passengers.

Canada Post solution

To demonstrate the value of the Addressed Admail, Lettermail and Expedited Parcel services, Canada Post partnered with Porter on a test campaign. The campaign was designed to reward repeat customers and build their perception of the company’s brand.

For the purposes of the campaign, Porter assigned each member of its loyalty program—known as VIPorter— to different groups based on frequency of travel. Using the Addressed Admail, Lettermail and Expedited Parcel services, Porter then sent a gift to each member along with a notification of a time-limited seat sale. Porter tracked bookings closely.


The test campaign demonstrated the unique ability of the Addressed Admail service to cost effectively connect with customers. Sales revenues generated by the service were much greater than anticipated and delivered a significantly higher ROI. The Addressed Admail campaign represented 50 per cent of the overall campaign revenues—despite representing just a fraction of the cost of the other mass-market tactics (such as full-page ads in national newspapers).

“There’s no doubt that the gifts and letters connected with customers and drove the campaign’s success,” says James Positano, Porter’s Manager of Loyalty and Relationship Marketing. “Many VIPorter members got in touch with us to say how impressed they were to receive personalized letters.”

The results were so positive, Porter ran a second, similar campaign and plans to increase its use of Canada Post services in the future.


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