How Dimensional Mail Can Be an Impressive Direct Mail Strategy

Credit: Unsplash by Paweł Czerwiński

Sometimes, direct mail marketing is really fun. Have you ever opened a can of worms? I did, and that dimensional mail really was a can of worms.

I received a soup can in the mail about 25 years ago. It looked just like a Campbell’s soup can, but instead of chicken noodle soup it was labeled “Can of Worms.” If you didn’t look too closely, you would swear it was a real soup can. Being in the direct marketing business, I appreciate stuff like this. It is one of the best promotional items I have ever received and I have never forgotten it.

Dimensional items are fun to get in the mail. What fun mail pieces have you seen or mailed?

More recently, I received a direct mail piece that focused more on personalization than on a cool factor. It was a full-color 6 x 9 envelope with a headline that read, “Values are way UP in the Gould neighborhood.” It had an aerial picture of my neighborhood, with my house highlighted. Below the headline it said, “(Yes, that’s your house!).” When I opened it (and who could resist opening an envelope like that?) there was a brochure, again with a picture of my house, describing the product and offer. This is very impressive to recipients.

  • What have you received that really caught your attention and motivated you to buy?
  • What are you doing to create that experience for your customers and prospects?
  • What do you know about the people you mail to and how can you use that to get them to buy?

As marketers, we grapple with these questions all of the time as we try to come up with more effective mail pieces. Obviously, the answers to these questions will be different for every company as your goals, what you sell, and how you sell it all factors into how you create your direct mail marketing.

The worst direct mail strategies are the ones where they add a dimensional piece or personalization that means nothing to their customers and prospects. What you are sending needs to be relevant to recipients and needs to coincide with the messaging of the campaign. When there is a clash between what you say and what you sent, people will throw it away. This is just a waste of money.

The can of worms worked because it was a unique dimensional piece that was selling software to keep people from creating a real can of worms. Then the hyper personalized house mail piece was selling homeowners insurance. You must have synchronicity in order to get results.

Creating an impressive direct mail campaign takes time and commitment. Create fun experiences for your customers and prospects that they will remember and share with others. It probably won’t be 25 years from now. But if your dimensional mail is good, it can lead to referrals six months from now. Are you ready to get started?