June 17, 2022

4 Ways to Make Your Direct Mail Stand Out

#1 Variable Data

Adding a personal touch can make all the difference when sending mail. Addressing someone by name can be invaluable when working on a large scale campaign as the recipient will feel less like just another prospect. Nothing feels more impersonal than mail addressed to a “current resident.” Contrary to popular belief, variable data doesn’t have to stop at names. It can be based on location, demographic, special interests, etc. The more personalized you can make it, the more likely your piece will be opened. 

When Lahlouh works with clients, it’s not uncommon for them to have multiple art versions based on these variables. Let’s say for example your variable is location - for prospects located in San Francisco there might be an image of the Golden Gate Bridge vs art for prospects in Cincinnati might have the Roebling Suspension Bridge. 

#2 Interactive Elements

Interactive elements such as QR codes, scratch off boxes, and removable pieces such as stickers or cards can create intrigue with your recipients to take the extra step to engage with your piece. Although these elements will add cost in many cases (aside from QR codes!), the investment you make will statistically increase the engagement rate of the piece. 

When sorting through a pile of mail that is all flat white A7 envelopes, finding a sheet of stickers or a mysterious scratch off element could be the difference between them reading your content or the recycling bin.

(Fold Factory)

#3 Shapes, Folds, and Sizes

In a sea of white standard size envelopes, it’s important to find ways to make your piece stand out. Using an accordion fold design or a square shaped envelope might seem like simple adjustments, but you’d be surprised how effective they can be. Studies show that by having unique characteristics like an oversized envelope, you are able to get a 5% response rate, the highest among all direct mail.  

Aside from open rates, adding a bit of flair to your direct mail piece allows you to show off your brand’s identity and creativity. The biggest compliment to a marketing/design team is when recipients enjoy the design so much that they keep it. Talk about the gift that keeps on giving.

#4 Unique Substrates and Specialty Applications  

Have you ever received a piece of mail that has a soft touch feel to it or a shiny hot foil stamped element to it? There is something about sorting through the mail and noticing that one piece is not like the others. It might be related to our print background, but there is something impressive and commendable about taking the time to add those finishing touches. Instead of going the traditional route with basic A7, they’ve taken the time to give you something special. It might be an ad, but it’s an ad with character. 

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