From Postage to Printing Nine Tips For Getting the Biggest Ban
The late guru Dick Benson once said: "Adding elements to a mailing package, even though obviously adding cost, is more likely to pay out than cheapening the package."
However, we've also seen as many winning mailings with fewer elements. For example, we've both had control mailings for Archaeology magazine and The American Textile Museum. Both mailings did measurably better when the four-color circulars were removed—a higher gross response and less cost for elements.
That said, every mailing should be looked at to see if it can be brought down to fighting weight. Could your four-page letter do the same job in two pages? Does the circular need to be four-color? Is card stock necessary on the order device when 95 percent of your orders come in via the phone or the Internet?
9. Is That BRE Necessary?
If your mailing package has a business reply card (BRC) as an order device, is an additional business reply envelope (BRE) necessary when doing a soft (bill me) offer?
The card should give you the maximum number of gross orders, and it's cheaper. After all, the prospect simply detaches it and drops it in the mail. Do not, however, give a credit card charge option on a BRC. The prospect's personal account number will be hanging out for everyone along the delivery path to see (and steal). With hard offers, always use a BRE.
For some readers, these cost-saving techniques may seem like basic Direct Mail Production 101. But we once knew of a marketer who had asked his new consultant to look at his printing bills.
It turns out that the marketer had put himself into the hands of a printing broker who was overcharging him to the tune of more than $300,000 a year! Had the client bought wisely and carefully, he could have mailed an additional 600,000 pieces for the same money, and generated that much more revenue.