The Linchpin of Direct Mail and Email
Not Mel Martin, the freelance copywriter who single-handedly turned Marty Edelston's Boardroom Reports into a publishing empire worth many hundreds of millions of dollars.
"Mel Martin was the world's slowest copywriter," Edelston told me. "It would take him three or four months to write a direct mail package. He could get stuck for a month on a letter opening."
He would also spend a week or two working out the envelope teaser copy.
The Creative Director's Envelope Checklist
- Space in upper right for indicia (stamp, printed or metered).
- Return address (either in upper left corner on flap in back).
- Placement of window (so that address on card shows through).
- Address in scannable typeface (so USPS machine can print barcode).
- Room at bottom for USPS to print or affix adhesive strip with barcode.
- Are all internal pieces folded so that they are machine insertable?
- Does inserting machine have enough stations/pockets to handle all inserts?
- Weight of the final mailing package. (Maximum 3.3 oz. More and you pay penalty.).
The Creative Director's Email Checklist
- From Line
- Subject Line
The Worst Envelope
For the worst envelope I have ever seen, click on the first image in the mediaplayer to the right.
Recently I switched to Comcast for Internet access.
Three months later, I received the fat red 6"x9" envelope that triggered this column.
Clearly Comcast's amateur perpetrators know nothing about the mechanics of direct mail, let alone the Envelope Checklist above.
As you can see a white label was plastered over the teaser copy, obliterating the message.
WELCOME TO XFINITY®
XFINITY TV, INTERNET AND VOICE
The USPS barcode strip was plastered over additional teaser copy.
At the time, I had no idea what Xfinity is. I have since discovered it is Comcast's three bundled services.