how to avoid the direct mail abyss aka the waste basket 300x200 1

How to Avoid the Direct Mail Abyss aka The Waste Basket

Let’s be honest, most of us get mail on a daily basis. There are those of us that really take the arduous task of checking (or skimming over) each and every piece of mail to qualify which ones are worth reading and which ones are destined to go to the waste basket.

This is the part most loved and hated by direct marketers – mostly because this is where they get to see if their tactics worked. Worst case scenario? If the person who receives the mail wouldn’t even make a second look at your mail and instantly throws it at the waste basket.

So, can we blame our recipients for this? Can we really say they are the problem when they consider our prized outputs as “junk mail”? Well, I think not. Bad targeting, maybe? Poor creative? Weak offer? It could be one of many things or a combination of all of them but don’t worry, it gets better from here.

3 tips on how to avoid the waste basket phenomenon

For starters, you have to go and check your envelope. This is pretty elementary but most direct marketers out there miss this one for the sake of budget and logistics.

Think about it, of all the standard white envelopes you have there on your mailbox, does any one of them really stand out? Remember that in order for your mail to be read, it has to be noticed first.

Next, you have to tickle the mind of your reader. Now that he/she already picked up your mail, you should make sure that he/she will open it and read it. How do you do this?

Well, you can start by simply placing a relevant picture on the first page. This might be a bit too tacky for some but it works especially in certain niches where customers like to “see” instead of just “read”. You can also add an open-ended question along with the picture so their curiosity will be piqued even more.

Lastly, you may want to look at the idea of using a live stamp. This tip sits on the phenomenon we call willing suspension of disbelief wherein people will gladly pretend it is a personal letter although they know it’s not.

If you play your cards right, you will take advantage of this phenomenon every single time.

To do this, you should always stick to being as human as possible with your direct mail marketing. The font, stamp, and even the words you use all add up to this human factor.

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