Mail Activity Highlights: Publications
Publishing mail started 2008 with a bang, as the Who’s Mailing What! Archive recorded 112 acquisition efforts and 89 voucher packages in January alone. With most of the big magazines mailing, we got a good feel for the trends and tactics playing out in this sector.
Reason magazine can always be relied upon to deliver inventive mail, and it didn’t disappoint this go-around. Not only is the 6˝ x 9˝ outer envelope personalized with the name of the prospect, but so is the brochure and order form! Of course, it also contains a pURL on the order page: “Reason magazine invites you to visit your own personal website at … to sign up for a FREE issue.” Perhaps the publisher wore itself out with its personalization efforts, though, for the letter is only addressed to “Dear Friend” (Archive code #202-172710-0801B).
Keeping the odd but effective streak alive, Brandweek sent out a #7 renewal package that disguises itself as an acquisition. The reply form uses the phrase “guaranteed uninterrupted service,” and both the outer and the voucher page say “statement of services and benefits.” Only at the bottom, where it says “or fax your renewal,” do you find out that this is actually a renewal effort (Archive code #710-178141-0801).
Time magazine makes an attempt to get prospects to sign up using a credit card, which increases the chances of getting automatic renewals down the road. In the past we’ve seen publications offer half a year free to those who pay with a credit card up front; here, in its 6˝ x 10-1/2˝ package, Time offers a $5 discount if prospects use a credit card. Okay, keeping that ‘odd streak’ going, it also offers an unusual premium for Time subscribers: an Ultronic Laser Level. The freemium, a Time-branded bookmark, gets things back to normal (Archive code #201-171632-0801).