Christmas represents what is possibly the best time of year for direct mail marketing, but it doesn’t leave much room for error. A sluggish start or some wrong choices at the planning stage can leave you playing catch-up during December, which is often too late for making changes to your overall campaign.

However, by implementing a few carefully chosen strategies, you can rescue your direct mail marketing campaign and give it a much-needed kick-start this Christmas.

Self-promotion direct mail
photo credit: Behance

Focus on your marketing campaign TODAY

You should plan your campaign during autumn. But if you fail to do so, there is always a way: It’s not too late if you start today! The keyword here is “today.”

You see, too many businesses leave direct mail marketing at Christmas until the end of November, by which time competitors have already forged ahead with their own campaigns. You should be sitting down with designers, writers and marketing specialists in September to discuss your target audience, your list of customers, the look of your marketing materials and the copy you’ll be including.

If you are one of those businesses, you surely need to do better planning next year. But no worries – again, it’s not too late; get down to work today, make your direct mail campaign the top priority, start crafting your campaign, and launch as soon as possible.

To give you some peace of mind, a direct mail campaign can be ready and mailed in 24 hours – of course, depending on the size and complexity of your campaign. With that said, if you are time-pressing, consider to keep things simple.

Seek the right help, and use the available tools and service to launch your campaign fast. It’s true that you might not be able to make all the necessary changes to your campaign, but you should try your best to make the most of your campaign this Christmas. Google for services and you’ll learn that help is widely available during the crunch time.

As a suggestion for your future direct marketing campaigns: Don’t be afraid to send your first mail-outs at the very beginning of November, as this will allow you to track their effectiveness and make tweaks to your strategy where necessary.

Be bold with your choice of envelopes

The average consumer is inundated with marketing mail, flyers and pamphlets at Christmas, so the only way you’ll be able to grab their attention is by being bold with your choice of envelopes. They are the shop window for your products and services, so they must look unique and interesting whilst remaining professional.

A custom-made envelope that has been printed to a very high standard will stand out from those of your competitors. If your message is a festive one, experiment with greens, reds and gold – with the help of an envelope design expert. And if you decide to include some copy on the front of your envelope, make sure you communicate either a benefit or an incentive to opening it.

Make sure you let the supplier know that you are late in running your campaign, and negotiate for the best way to expedite things.

Christmas direct mail
photo credit: Behance

Create a seasonal reward

If you want to grab the attention of consumers at Christmas, you’re going to need to create a powerful message – as well as an incentive that catches the eye. The average person has various distractions and expenses to consider at this time of year, so they’ll need a clear indication of ‘what’s in it for me?’

The most obvious incentive is a discount, which won’t cost your business too much, yet delivers a tangible benefit to your customer. Some companies offer free trials, consultations or memberships as incentives. Or if you want to create something that looks even more intriguing on the doormat, you can include a free gift, such as a pen or a branded key ring. Your primary aim should be to get consumers to open the mail you send out, so giving them an indication of the potential benefits of doing so is always an effective strategy. This can be through the design of a bespoke envelope with a clear message, or the inclusion of a bulky gift.

Step into the mind of your customer

You should assess your final mail-out in terms of professionalism, visual appeal, uniqueness and appropriateness. Is this something your target customer would open? Is it in keeping with your brand? Does the design, colour and shape make your mail stand out from that being sent out by your main competitors?

If your budget allows, it may be worth getting feedback on your chosen design and message before going to the expense of paying for postage. Test it out on colleagues, in your local high street or with friends and family. Give them three designs to choose from, and ask them which if them they’d be more inclined to open.

Takeaway

Time is a precious commodity when planning a Christmas direct mail marketing campaign. With only literally days to play with, you need to be sure your message is perfect for your target audience. Remember, help is out there; make launching your campaign a priority and give your business the best chance possible of capitalising on the lucrative Christmas and New Year.