5 Steps to Foolproof Direct Mail | PMI

Figuring out the most successful route for your business’ direct mail marketing strategy can be hard. Not only when it comes to designing things, but just the general logistics of sending the items and making sure they get where they’re supposed to go. 

When you want to get something right, you’ll most likely contact an expert in that field. For direct mail, there is no greater expert than the U.S. Postal Service. 

We’ve compiled a list of five tips for foolproof direct mail from the USPS that every marketer should know. By utilizing these, you should be able to make more of an impact with your direct mail. 

1. Choose your format carefully. 

Before you start your design, choose your mailing format carefully. Know how much space you have to work with and design within those guidelines. 

If you have a lot of content, consider using larger formats, such as flats, that give you more space. If you don’t have that much, consider something that is postcard size that’s easily readable and gets straight to the point. 

2. Details matter. 

The major components of direct mail (design, format, and color choices) are important, but there are other details to consider, as well. 

Is that postcard too small to fit all of the copy you expected? Is that oversized “postcard” not a postcard at all, but a non-standard size that increases the postage budget?

In situations like these, you need to pay attention to the budget and run some numbers to make sure you’re utilizing both your content and your budget to the fullest. Don’t waste money and time on direct mail items that don’t get the job done.  

3. Faux stamps deliver. 

Delivering mail with real stamps gets better results than bulk mail, but it is expensive. Consider using precanceled stamps instead. Precanceled stamps are special stamps that come in small groups such as 500, 3,000 and 10,000. 

Precanceled stamps offer a personalized look without the price. To qualify, your mailing must have a 200-piece or 50-pound minimum. 

4. Pick the right class. 

Do you know the difference between First-Class Mail, USPS Marketing Mail, and commercial mail? Do you know how your postage would change if you switched to a postcard instead of a letter? Or if you used an oversized postcard rather than a standard one? 

Consider all of your options before your next mailing. You can always go online and look at the different prices of things to make sure you’re spending your money in the best way and getting the most out of it. 

5. Add a letter. 

Adding a letter to a direct mail package can really boost your ROI, even if it costs more in print and postage. Peter DeLegge, a marketing consultant, has recounted the story of a company that tested two packages promoting its mail-order tool catalog. 

Package A consisted of a sales letter and reply form. Package B was a double postcard. The result? Package A out-pulled Package B by a 3:1 ratio.

Postal costs are important, but they have to be weighed against the potential return. Sometimes a little extra work and money can lead to a big payout that’s always worth it. 

You could always consider it a balancing act and send half of the stuff without a letter and the other half with one. That way you save some money but you’re still spending it in a way that can help your business succeed. 

Reach out to PMI

When it comes to direct mail, details matter! No one knows that more than the professionals at PMI, experts in printing and binding services. 

Not only can we help you with your direct mail marketing strategy, we can also help you design, print and send your direct mail so you’re getting the most bang out of your buck. Reach out to us today for more information or to get more help with your business’ marketing strategy.

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