It’s been decided…you’re going to craft a direct mail piece as part of your overall marketing strategy. Good decision! Just like a car that can’t operate efficiently without each of its parts, a direct mail piece must also have specific elements to be effective and yield your organization the greatest ROI.
Whether you are creating a postcard or a 4 page color booklet, it needs to include these 5 elements.
It’s the first impression and we all know how important that is. Use this opportunity to capture the reader’s attention so they want to continue reading. This is your chance to imply value to your target audience. While this may be the shortest part of your direct mail piece, as one of the most impactful, it may take you longer to prepare than the others. Don’t rush it…it could make or break the success of your campaign.
While a direct mail piece is essentially a sales tool, the copy written needs to focus on the benefits the product/service being advertised will have on the reader, aka, the potential purchaser or donor. Rather than share the information about the product/service and its features, let the reader know how it will impact them and their lives. This should be done throughout the direct mail piece.
Specific Call to Action
Let’s face it, if you don’t ask, you won’t get! Be sure you have a specific call to action in your direct mail piece. Maybe it’s to call a toll free number, visit your website or complete a form and send it back to you. Whatever it is, be specific in your ask. Create a sense of urgency so the reader does it right then otherwise the likelihood of their putting the direct mail piece down and forgetting about it increases. You can do this by offering something extra or a discount to those that respond in a specified amount of time. Everyone likes a deal, right?
Your call to action needs to include a way for the reader to act. You want to make this is as easy as possible. If it is too much work, the reader may not follow through. If you want them to call you, provide a toll-free number (a vanity number that is memorable is even better) or if you are looking for them to visit your website, consider a QR code or easy to input url. There is no need to list this information more than once in your communication After all, you don’t want to waste valuable real estate on your direct mail piece.
The Post Scriptum is better known as the P.S. Studies have shown that many people jump right to the end of a letter (or will even flip over a 2-sided note) to see if there is a P.S. and read that before determining if they want to read the whole thing or not. Knowing this, it is a good idea to include one in your next direct mail piece. It doesn’t need to be overly wordy. A simple reiteration of the main points of your mailer and a reminder that time is of the essence are perfect content for this section!
P.S. – Have fun with this section!
Keep in mind that direct mail is part of an overall marketing strategy. Follow up pieces and inclusion of other media sources, such as email, social media and blogging, will increase your overall results!