Marketing consultant Robert W. Bly offers four pointers on increasing the pulling power of outer envelopes
Choose your stamping wisely
Conventional marketing wisdom holds that the most response-stimulating postage media is an affixed stamp, followed in order by metered mail and, last, a preprinted indicia, Bly writes. Some marketers, he notes, report that commemoratives and other unusual stamps lift response. So may the tactic of using multiple low-denomination stamps instead of a single stamp.
First- or third-class postage?
Economics usually dictate third-class (Bulk) postage. But, Bly says, using first-class postage when advertising to select business markets may lift response enough to be profitable. The famous consultant Richard V. Benson insisted that response percentages to third-class and first-class mailings were about equal. However, he said, first-class won the toss when speed of response was critical.
Closed-face or window envelope?
A closed-face envelope looks like “real” personal or business mail. Window envelopes showing a reply device with the recipient’s name and address imprinted allow recipients to reply without the response-depressing chore of filling in their names, addresses, and other such information. The ideal solution – if affordable – may be to imprint addressing information on both the envelope and the reply device.
Flat or bulky envelopes?
Bly reports that the marketing manager of a nationally known non-profit organization tells him that all of his best-performing mailers have “heft.” They contain lightweight small objects such as a crucifix or a necklace. Other advertisers have obtained good results by including pencils, ballpoint pens, or plastic cards in outer envelopes. Bly recounts that a contractor mailed prospects a brick with his business card silk-screened on the top. When he followed up by phone, he began his sales call by saying, “I’m the guy who sent you the brick.” The tactic almost always worked.
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