The biggest challenge with designing any direct mail piece is to create something compelling enough so that your recipient won’t just toss it in the trash without taking a closer look. Direct mail involvement pieces are designed to pique the recipient’s interest enough for them to actually interact with the piece and (ultimately) (hopefully) take action.
Despite what the naysayers will tell you, technology has not caused the sun to set on direct mail but has, in fact, extended the horizon of direct mail possibilities. There are more opportunities than ever for creating interactive and integrated direct mail campaigns.
Ikea frequently uses pop-up style direct mail pieces to catch consumers’ attention and demonstrate how their easy-to-assemble furniture enables you to create a fully-decorated room with minimal effort. There are many potential ways that you can use a pop-up mailer to bring your own products to life – use it as eye-catching event invitation, showcase a new product in 3D, or simply use it to make your offer jump off the page - literally.
Give your customers access to exclusive content using a QR code. A QR (or quick response) code is a scannable barcode that connects your direct mail piece with a digital experience. Including a QR code in your direct mail piece is an excellent way to promote engagement and integrate various touch points within a campaign.
Your QR code can link to anything–exclusive content (like the playlist in the Victoria’s Secret mail piece above), a campaign-specific landing page, or an exclusive limited-time coupon. Better yet, the QR code can be a variable component of your direct mail piece, so the offer or content can be unique to the recipient.
People love being made to feel like they’re special. Capitalize on the power of exclusivity by sending prospects a VIP “backstage pass” to your next event, be it an open house, fundraising event, or flash sale. It can be challenging to recruit prospects to make the leap from receiving a direct mail piece to engaging with your company in real life, but nothing makes people feel more motivated to attend an event than feeling like they’ve been singled out for an invite–with VIP access, no less!
There are few direct mail design elements more irresistible than a scratch off. Scratch-off coatings have long been used in direct mail pieces to encourage interactive involvement with mailers, and they are still an effective strategy for catching your recipient's interest.
Typically, a scratch-off is designed as a basic shape - such as a circle, square, or bar - that the recipient scratches off to reveal a discount or offer code. Boost the creativity quotient of your next direct mail piece by incorporating a scratch-off as a part of the design itself, such as the frosty car windshield shown above.
Redeemable Free Offer:
What’s more irresistible than a free sample? We can’t tell you how often we accept samples at the grocery store even if it’s something we don’t like, just because it’s free. Sure, you could simply mail your customers a free sample of something. OR you could motivate them to take action and pay an in-person visit to your premises by sending them a coupon for a free sample redeemable in-store.
This cheeky KitKat mailer combines humor and the irresistible pull of free chocolate (or free anything) to get consumers to try their new product, the Chunky KitKat. Even better, by letting people experience the quality of their product with a free sample, they’ve created a street team of brand ambassadors to spread word-of-mouth buzz about how tasty the new KitKat bar is. That’s what we in the biz like to call “Genius.”
Incorporating a coded message into a direct mail piece adds fun and intrigue to your missive – your audience won’t be able to resist using the enclosed decoding glasses to figure out what the secret message says. Use coded messages to amplify the element of exclusivity (one of the 7 emotional copy drivers) that surrounds an exclusive offer such as a special event or a members only sale. Alternatively, use the coded message as an incentive to get people to visit your physical location in order to decode the message – like the Adidas example above. Nothing makes a consumer feel more special and singled out than receiving an offer so exclusive it had to be encrypted.