Archive Observations: Colleges, Pharmacies & Our Grand Control Update
Mailing in a #10 envelope, CVS/pharmacy (Archive code #910-669946-0905) went with a red-bordered letter asking "Could you use an extra $50?" With colorful icons, the benefits of switching a prescription are listed (e.g., "Over 6,900 locations nationwide, many open 24/7"), and the target customer is given the option of transferring meds either in-store or online. Two coupons are included, each offering a $25 store gift card for a transferred prescription.
Grand Control Update & Profile
The Archive's total number of Grand Controls (controls in the mail for three or more years) edged closer to 1,000 as eight new mailings made the grade in May, including efforts by Forbes (Archive code #205-171654-0905), Greenpeace (Archive code #603-171877-0905), International Campaign for Tibet (Archive code #601-476865-0905), Internet Retailer (Archive code #205-640008-0905), Arbor Day Foundation (Archive code #603-172991-0905), Nightingale-Conant (Archive code #733-171965-0905) and Southern Living (Archive code #101-171600-0905).
An appeal by Volunteers of America (Archive code #611-173657-0905), a human services organization, has been in the mail since at least February 2004, and immediately stands out because it uses a brown lunch bag as the carrier. By itself, this is not news; over the years, we've come across 17 other non-profits that have used this format at one time or another. But in this case, the bag is folded and taped to measure 6" x 6-14". When opened, the letter is printed on the one side on the outside of the bag. The Johnson Box asks the prospective donor: "Please look inside this bag ... then look inside your heart!" The intent is to raise money to provide meals for the homeless and elderly.
Although one may think of a brown bag as an ordinary item, the letter writer feels a bit guilty: "I guess I took having enough to eat for granted. Not any more." Put that way, guilt, an important emotional driver, takes hold. Inside the bag, the reply form, a "best wishes" note card to accompany a meal and the CRE await. FYI: A nearly identical version of this effort was mailed by Volunteers of America in December 2008; the holiday effort was called the "Sidewalk Santa Appeal."