The average direct mail campaign has a response rate of 4.9% which is nearly double that of the average email campaign, with open rates as high as 90%. We don’t need to explain to you how monumental those numbers are, just from a single direct mail campaign.

But regardless of these statistics, there are still a few costly mistakes to watch out for that could derail your whole campaign. The worst thing you could do is make a mistake that prevents your business from capturing the attention of your prospects.

Avoid these five mistakes on your next direct mail campaign to set yourself up for success.

Mistake #1: Unclear Instructions and No Call-to-Action

Creating a clear and actionable call-to-action (CTA) is essential to persuading your reader to take the next step. Without direct instructions, your mailer may get tossed aside for later or thrown straight into the trash. Be creative and make it unique to your business. Provide a sense of urgency in your CTA so the recipient is more inclined to Act Now!

Here are a couple of examples:

  • Sign up online for this limited time deal!
  • Call us within the next seven days for a free (your offer – i.e. car wash, membership trial) 
  • Don’t miss out and hurry in to take advantage of this exclusive offer!


Mistake #2: Not Targeting The Most Relevant Prospects

When you send out your direct mailer, you can’t just send it to anyone within the vicinity of your business. You’ll end up wasting a lot of money and valuable resources without a targeting strategy. Start by doing the following:

  • State your goal
  • Analyze your current customer base
  • Identify your key demographics (age, location, gender, interests)
  • Study your competition
  • Define your target audience


Mistake #3: Not Mentioning Your Benefits

This is the biggest asset you have to include on your mailer. Why should your reader care? What does your business do to solve their problem? Compel them to respond to your postcard because of all the amazing benefits your services provide.


Mistake #4: Filling All Possible Space (—Too Much Info)

Information overload. If your design is too busy and there is too much information cluttering your mailer, it will be harder for your reader to digest the content. In many cases, it may deter them from continuing to read at all. Take these tips into consideration.

  • Welcome white space. It’s not empty, it’s breathable. The eyes need a place to rest, so use white space to let your content breathe.
  • Use color for hierarchy. Create visual interest and use color to represent your brand. Just be careful not to go overboard as color can quickly be a source of your postcard looking busy and tacky.
  • Incorporate relevant imagery and a bold headline. Really wow your readers with eye-catching visuals that clearly represent you and your product.
  • Only give need-to-know information. Keep it short and sweet, but draw your readers in with your offer and CTA.


Mistake #5: Forgetting to Proofread

Spelling and grammatical errors can reflect poorly on your brand and can cause a loss of trust among your customers. Take extra care to proofread, read aloud, and have a second or third set of eyes take a look before sending them to your potential customer.

Direct mail marketing can be a highly effective way to reach your prospects when done right. It’s often the first impression you make with a target audience. Making sure you avoid these common postcard mistakes can lead you to a very profitable campaign.

To get started and get ahead, contact UpSwell today and get a free marketing assessment from one of our experts. We look forward to helping you on this journey to direct mail success!

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