Grand Control of the Month: Trident Society
Talking about death is a powerful taboo in our culture. But as a mailing by Trident Society shows, it's possible to broach the subject with a prospect, if done carefully.
This new Grand Control (in the mail for three years or more) sells pre-paid cremation plans, which doesn't make it an exact fit for the Who's Mailing What! Archive's industry category, "Cemetaries." Not that it's a big category — we've collected very little in this one over the years. But let's face it, whether it's life insurance, or estate plans, preparing for the inevitable is all over direct mail. And like many of those efforts, this offer gently touches on some key copy drivers to elicit a response.
The outer is an invitation-sized 4-3/4" x 6-1/2" cream-colored envelope, with no corner card on the front, just a teaser "Free Pre-Paid Cremation!" (more on that in a moment). The two-page letter inside is disarming enough, a stationery-style sheet of paper unfolding to 5-1/2 "x 8-1/2", with a floral pattern on the right border of both pages. (See mail piece in media player at right, Archive code #395-711407-1006; go to our Who's Mailing What! Archive to order.)
After noting the growing preference for cremation vs. traditional funerals, the letter comes right to the point, offering reasons why "Cremation just makes sense," including convenience, less expense, less environmental impact and the opportunity to "plan for a dignified resting place."
Next, the letter zeroes in on the traditional dilemma faced by families. They may feel guilt, a need to memorialize a loved one in a meaningful way, although there may be high costs associated with that course, including a "fancy and expensive funeral home." Pre-paid cremation, the argument goes, is the salvation for these worries. The price is locked in, and the family is protected from "falling victim to pressure to overspend." The family can now "concentrate on what's important — helping each other get through their grief."