6. Many postcards wind up on the refrigerator or walls of cubicles in the office, giving them greater visibility and shelf life than regular direct mail. "Mail someone a postcard that really grabbed their attention, and chances are they'll hang onto it," says Frank. Copywriter Roscoe Barnes adds: "Some postcards are collector's items. They are designed to be kept and praised. To work, however, they must have a striking drawing, painting or photograph. Using the works of a famous artist helps."
7. Postcards are extremely versatile. They can be used for coupons, invitations, announcements, save-the-date reminders, thank-you cards, follow-ups, special offers, inserts in magazines, admission tickets, mini-newsletters, bookmarks and quick-reference guides.
8. Postcards can drive response to a Web site URL or toll-free phone number. Add a perforation with a tear-off business reply card to create a "double postcard," and you can generate mail response as well.
9. Postcards also offer a quick, affordable way to create clever campaigns with a consistent theme. "We see many of these mailing on a regular basis to the same audience with trivia questions, creating anticipation for the next mailing," says Frank.
What marketers have used postcards with success in recent months? Let's look at four examples.
Case Study #1:
Haag Engineering Company
Haag Engineering Company specializes in failure and damage consulting—the analysis of why a structure, such as a bridge or building, collapsed. Clients include manufacturers, insurance companies and law firms.
Accredited in several states to provide continuing education, Haag recently mailed 20,000 postcards to promote its seminars. Recipients of the card are driven to Haag's Web site to view course offerings and locations.
The card also can be kept as a reminder: While visiting a client, one of Haag's engineers saw that the client had the postcard pinned to an office wall. Response rates, according to Cheryl Markstahler, marketing manager, average between 10 percent and 25 percent.