Direct Mail Strategy: Give ’em a Sneak Peek
The Teaching Company bares the contents of its package—a sample CD—with a clear polybag carrier.
Hershey reserves the unaddressable side of its envelope for a window that showcases its brochure.
In a recent survey entitled “Because It’s Personal: A Study of Consumer Use and Preference for Envelopes,” conducted by the Envelope Manufacturers Association Foundation, two-thirds of the survey participants indicated they open envelopes received by mail “if they think the contents might be interesting.” That’s a potential for a 66 percent open rate.
The average person invests less than three seconds deciding whether to keep or toss your mail. One way to increase the odds in your favor is to give recipients an immediate sneak peek of the package’s contents. With this in mind, here are a few types of envelopes you can use to provide this potentially profitable preview.
Prepared to bare your soul … and the contents of your mail piece? Use a clear carrier envelope. Even if it costs more, it’s an investment that’s worth a test, especially when your envelope contains an intriguing product sample, free gift or unique action/retention device.
Think about it. Which is more compelling and more powerful? Using the teaser copy, “Free CD Inside,” on a traditional envelope or showing the actual free CD inside your envelope along with other contents?
The Teaching Company repeatedly has mailed its Great Courses sample lecture CD inside a clear polybag carrier. If the company’s a true direct marketer that tracks, measures and analyzes its results, these repeat mailings must mean polybag carriers work and are cost-effective.
If you’re not a fan of the plastic bag appearance of The Teaching Company’s poly carrier, you have plenty of other choices. Univenture’s EnvyPak envelope is a heavy weight, clear carrier that looks and functions like a traditional envelope and also can sport four-color printing. The company’s Web site says it’s available in various sizes, including two that can be run through automated inserting machines.
Another example of a mailer effectively using clear envelopes is The Heritage Foundation. For years, the fundraiser has mailed a 12¼˝ x 9¼˝ clear, plastic outer that seals with an official-looking, day-glow sticker imprinted with copy that reads: