5 ways to ensure you send direct mail, not junk mail

22nd February 2022

Remember when junk mail filled your letterbox and not your inbox?

Before the advent of email marketing, direct mail was pivotal for getting a company’s voice heard. Unfortunately, a few bad eggs spoiled it for everyone with poor copy, lazy design and questionable tactics creating a culture of junk mail.

So, how can you ensure you send direct mail and not junk mail?

1 – The devil is in the data

Direct mail relies on data, the information you’ve gathered about your customers and hot leads. The more insights you have, the more ways you’ll have to cater your message to each recipient. Extra details like gender, date of birth, marital status and buying habits.

Just remember to continually maintain and cleanse your data to ensure it remains accurate. Incorrect or inaccurate data wastes time and money and risks frustrating the recipient.

2 – Targeting and data insights

Once you’ve gathered your data consider who your message will appeal to and target only those people. Use your data insights to help narrow down your target demographic. When someone reads relevant mail that addresses them directly, they’re far less likely to dismiss it as junk.

3 – Design around your message

If in doubt, keep things simple. If you have a great offer, service or story, it will speak for itself. Clever design can be memorable but clear content sells. Garish design is instantly off-putting and can easily wind up in the bin.

4 – Including images

If design isn’t your forte, a single image can work wonders, make it relevant and eye-catching. For a personal touch, use your data insights to select images to suit individual recipients. If you run a veterinary practice and send appointment reminders, consider your recipient’s pet and select an image that’s relevant. A generic postcard with a horse on the front would likely jar with Mrs Jarvis and her pet tortoise.

5 – Considered copy

Remember: quality over quantity. Work out your key points and condense them into a few great lines. Have an attention grabbing headline and make the next step clear for the customer, by including a call to action that really stands out. Avoid clichés, puns and exaggerations. That doesn’t mean your copy can’t be witty, clever or exciting, just make sure it’s accurate. Talk straight, your customers will appreciate it.

The most powerful element in advertising is the truth. – William Bernbach

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