Direct Mail Campaign – What Does Your Envelope Color Mean?

If you think that the envelope color in your direct mail campaign doesn’t matter, you should think again. The envelope color you choose in your direct mail campaign will determine the results you get from your marketing efforts. After all, the envelope that you use will determine whether your mail will be opened or not.

Read along to learn why your envelope color matters and what you need to keep in mind when sending your next campaign.

Self-promotion direct mail
photo credit: Behance

What You Need to Remember When Preparing Your Campaign

Open Rate

While you can’t depend on your envelopes to sell your products, they do play a significant role in determining the kind of response you’ll get from your campaign. The aim of your direct mail envelope is to increase your open rate.

While using brightly colored business envelopes such as red can increase your open rate, a few tricks here and there can make a huge difference as well. Consider having a call to action on your envelope, a teaser copy, a deadline, or even the product image.

Even so, if you’re targeting a business, ensure to stay as neutral as possible. This way, your mail will appear as advertisements or junk.

Return on Investment

Another important thing when it comes to direct mail marketing is ROI. Your direct mail envelope affects both the sunk costs and open rates.

The amount you spend in direct mail envelopes is among the sunk costs. You must consider these costs when evaluating your ROI.

While you can make your mailing stand out by using a larger envelope and consequently increase your open rate, it will come at an added cost. Using smaller envelopes will reduce postage costs but might affect your ROI.

Always remember that your envelope is not meant to sell your product but rather to get your recipient open it so they can see its content. If your mail is not opened, you’ll not generate any ROI.


Direct mail envelopes are effective branding tools. You can brand your envelope so that consumers will recognize your mail without even looking at the sender’s name.

The best thing is that this allows other people other than the intended recipient sees your brand.

Envelope color for direct mailing

What Does Envelope Color Mean in Direct Mail Marketing?

Shoppers give much thought to visuals and color when buying. The color of your direct mail envelope goes beyond making your mailer appear attractive, as you’ll see below.

White Envelopes

Arguably the most popular envelope, a white envelope, comes in different styles to meet the user’s needs. White evokes the feeling of purity and safety. It is ideal for both professional and informal purposes.

Red Envelopes

Red color evokes a sense of excitement and urgency. Using a red direct mail envelope will evoke a sense of urgency. You may also use a red color envelope if you want the recipients to act quickly. No wonder Coca-Cola chose red as its brand color as it evokes a sense of excitement.

Yellow Envelopes

Reputable brands such as McDonald’s use yellow as their primary color. When used in envelopes, yellow can provide a feeling of cheerfulness and warmth. If used well, it can help grab your readers’ attention. Don’t misuse it, though, as it can have a negative effect.

Blue Envelopes

Blue is associated with coolness and reliability. Some studies have shown that blue color can help calm the mind and boost concentration.

Popular brands that use blue as their primary color include Twitter and WordPress. When used in your mailer, it can help establish trust and reliability.

Purple Envelopes

Purple is associated with richness and dreams. When used in a mailer, it will enhance creativity and intelligence. Purple is a staple color in most beauty and anti-aging products. Popular brands that use purple include Cadbury and Yahoo. Queen Elizabeth’s royal crown is also purple.

Green Envelopes

If you want your mailer to provide a relaxing experience to your readers, going green may be the way to go. Besides, the green color is associated with power. It’s commonly used in eco-friendly products and brands. Popular brands like Starbucks use green as their main color.

Orange Envelopes

Orange is associated with creativity and inspiration. When you use it in your mailer, it can provide a sense of warmth and affordability.

Black Envelopes

While black can signify a scary experience, it is associated with power and control in a marketing context. Even so, you may want to combine black with other light colors to make your mailer a bit fun while maintaining its seriousness.