Is your direct mail, junk mail?

I’m a great advocate of direct mail but I loathe junk mail. So, what’s the difference?

Good direct mail is targeted, relevant, appropriate and well designed. Junk mail is none of those things.

When your direct mail piece lands on the recipient’s doorstep it needs to make an immediate impression. This is especially true if you’ve used a service such as Royal Mail Door to Door where it’s highly probable that your leaflet will be arriving along with several others.

Unfortunately, the prevalence of junk mail means that many people pay little attention to direct mail choosing instead to put it straight into the recycling bin.

As a marketer, I take notice of what comes through my door, good or bad. Today I want to hold up a recent direct mail item and explain why I think it falls into the example of junk mail category. Here it is:

So, what in my opinion, is wrong with this leaflet that dropped through my door? The main issues are as follows:

Poor design – there are four different styles of design going on this page (the back of the leaflet has a completely different style) and frankly, it looks a complete mess.

Unclear brand – there are four brands on this page and it’s not obvious who the flyer is from. On first glance, I’d say Aquafficient but on further scrutiny, it appears to be Premier Smart Heat or Premier Radiators.

Mixmatched imagery – the image doesn’t add to or support the content.

Lack of message – what is the takeaway message from this leaflet? My eye is drawn all over the place and I can’t really work out what the offer is.

Missing contact information – there’s no web address which is where interested recipients will want to go to for information. Also, by not including a campaign-specific URL the sender has lost an opportunity to track responses from this initiative.

Poor layout – the notes relating to the asterisk in the top section of the flyer are in the free post coupon. Should anyone return the coupon (although is anyone likely to write all their personal details on a piece of paper and put it in the post without an envelope?) then they will lose the rider.

I’m now going to keep my eye out and find a good direct mail example to share with you. In the meantime, here’s a direct mail from a few years ago which I thought was brilliant!

If you’d like some help to make sure your direct mail doesn’t become junk mail, give us a shout.

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