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Direct Mail 1-2-3

Jerry Heisler

When it comes to executing a direct mail program it’s as easy as 1-2-3.

  1. Select your mailing format
  2. Design the mailing piece
  3. Pick your target audience

Let’s look at each of the steps in more detail.

Selecting a mailing format

Will a simple Standard postcard serve your purpose or should you use a Deluxe or Sumo Size™ postcard, a Greeting Card self mailer or a Double Deluxe? To help you make this decision, the first question you need to ask yourself is…“what do I want to accomplish with the mailing?” Are you looking for traffic, getting people to come into your place of business? Do you use sales people who need leads that you can develop through the mail? Are you looking for a direct order where people call you, order via the internet or mail in an order?

When you know what you want to accomplish it’s much easier to choose the tools that will get the job done for you. Let’s say that you are looking for sales leads. You want people to raise their hands and tell you that they want – someone to send them more information, or to come over and provide a demonstration, or perhaps give a quote on a home improvement or other service.

If that’s your goal, then you need a way for them to respond. This suggests that a double postcard with a business reply feature is the appropriate format. They can get your sales message on one card and tear off the second card and use it to reply.

Perhaps you’re looking for traffic. A single postcard can help you generate traffic by having the recipients bring in the card and receive something special for doing so. It might be a discount, gift or a free trial. A single postcard will enable you to both tell your story while using the card itself as the response device. An inexpensive, “two for one”.

Design your mailing piece

Step two is to design the mailing piece. How will it look? Will you have photographs or perhaps illustrations? What elements will go where on the card?

Modern Postcard can help you with this step. Simply furnish them with your copy, imagery and the details of what you want the card to look like, and their expert graphic designers will lay out an attractive card for you. Next, they’ll send it to you for approval and, in consultation with you, make any necessary changes you may want. You don’t need to know anything about design…we’ll do it all.

Select a targeted list

The perfect format and the most beautiful design won’t do you any good unless you send your mailing to an appropriate audience. That’s where list selection comes in.

Who do you want to reach with your mailing piece? One popular school of thought says, find out who your best present customers are and get as many more people as you can who are just like them.

Here are some things to think about.

  • What are your present customers like?
    • Where do they live?
    • How old are they?
    • What kind of income do they typically have?

  • What area produces the most business for you?
    • Is it a certain distance from your business location or all over town?
    • Do you serve consumers at home, business firms or both?

  • Do your typical customers own a particular product?
    • A certain brand of car, boat, etc.

  • Do your present customers have a special interest?
    • Golfing
    • Skiing
    • Knitting
Once you’ve determined who you want to reach, obtaining an appropriate list is an easy thing to do. Modern Postcard’s list professionals can recommend suitable lists, furnish you with available counts and print your list directly onto the mailing piece. Of course, their in-house postal center even ensures your cards are mailed without delay.

There it is. Direct mail 1-2-3. Try it. We think you’ll like the results.

I've been using Modern Postcard more than ten years now, and wouldn't think of using anyone else. Other places may sometimes be a few dollars cheaper, but nobody can touch your service, reliability, lightning speed, the quality of your product, and your total professionalism. You guys are the BEST. Keep up the great work, you set the standard. The postcards were fantastic, as usual; can't wait to see this poster!
Carl Richards
Riverdale Art Center