Direct Mail Tips for Canadian Mailing Services
by GFX Printing

  • If you have a mailing list you regularly send more expensive items to (an annual catalogue, for example), a postcard using First Class Lettermail or AdMail with Return Services can offer an ideal way to verify the list's accuracy. Postcards that are undeliverable can be returned, so you can update or delete names and addresses before mailing that expensive catalogue.

  • Postcards can also be used to test offers to small groups of prospects and customers. Once you determine that the response rate is positive, you can proceed with a full-fledged mailing to your entire customer base.

  • Avoid the temptation to write a book or dissertation on how great you or your product/service is. Remember the marketing cardinal rule of "what's in it for me" which is the benefits to the reader, i.e. will they be smarter, thinner, happier, etc. if they use your product or service.

  • Postcards are rarely one-offs. Try not to get discouraged should your first try at direct mail not bring in as many new prospects as you had hoped. Direct mail is about frequency and timing -- maybe that 3rd time you send the same offer to the same person "sticks" and a call or sale happens at that time. Perhaps you need to go back to basics and review the design and copy again to ensure it's simplicity and that the message sent is the same message received -- think interpretation. If, by the 4th or 5th time, your same offer to the same list isn't working, that's the time to get help ... but not after your 1st time mailing.
  • Don't use postcards to try to close sales.

    This is by far the biggest mistake we see with customers attempting direct mail for the first time and is easily avoidable by simplifying the wording by adding a "call to action". Americans wishing to penetrate the Canadian marketplace need to ensure the message is not the same one sent to Americans -- we Canadians view direct mail quite differently and you need to work with a company like GFX Printing that can assist you with your Canadian marketing goals.
  • Remember that a postcard is like a billboard; space is limited so headlines must be kept short and copy must be well thought out.

  • Postcards can be designed as coupons, gift certificates or tickets to an event. By measuring redemptions, you can easily track response and evaluate what worked and what didn't. Or you can include a special code so that it can be captured when recipients call your office or visit your website. Better yet, when you use postcards as part of your marketing campaign, your competitors won't know about it, unlike your print ads.

Remember that postcards need only be an exercise in simplicity; they are small and require no envelopes for the recipient to toss, no folding or collating that makes your piece cumbersome to handle, nor are they too expensive to mail.


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