Simon Aronin

There’s a new Milton Glaser-style T-shirt popping up on the city sidewalks that quips, “I love nerds.” If nerds are cool again—a cool thing being defined by whether or not it warrants a hip T-shirt—then that explains a lot about the fun design of the recent Scientific American Mind acquisition mailer (Archive Code #202-701549-0708B). Aware that the publication’s content needs to stand out just as much as the offer, the publisher opted for a more colorful approach to science with a capital “S.” The mailer’s aggressive creative demystifies the field with “Pop-Up Video” meets text-book design, bringing the editorial to life on the page.

Affix a tail and a spool of string to this 10-1/2" x 14" mailing from Consumer Reports and you could fly it like a kite. Size is a factor with creative formats, and big mailings can mean big results in the mailbox. So impressed was Consumer Reports parent Consumers Union with the performance of a similarly sizeable mail piece that's been pulling results for its On Health publication for the last year or so, the non-profit testing and information organization gave it a try with its flagship publication. "We tested it last summer and rolled out with it in January," explains circulation

We've commented before on the weaning of inserts from direct mail packages. The quarter-inch thick envelope package, jammed with elements, seems a thing of the past. But inserts, or buckslips, are far from extinct. In fact, those marketers still using them have very strong reasons for doing so, as these pieces can provide strategic support to the sales message in your main elements. For example, Consumers Reports includes an insert in its #11 envelope control that drives home the point of how consumer product knowledge helps shoppers get the best buys for their money--the main benefit exhorted in the sales letter (202CONREP1201). The insert

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