There’s little question postcard mailings have become more popular in the direct mail world. At TMR Direct, we’ve certainly seen an uptick in the number of companies using cards as a way to reach out to customers and prospects.
The reasons for using postcards are fairly obvious. First, postcards are quicker and less expensive to print. Second, they can cost less postage to mail.
Unfortunately, some businesses and organizations seem to miss the fact that they have less “real estate” to work with when mailing a card, and as a result, they try to cram the same amount of information into a smaller space. That just doesn’t work.
How postcards are different
A postcard isn’t the format to provide a detailed explanation of your product or service. It’s really more like a miniature billboard (or a “tangible tweet”). It needs to be a quick read and it needs to have a clear call to action (CTA). You want to use your card to drive interested individuals to your website. There, they can get as much detailed information as they want. Postcards are ideal for integrating your offline and online marketing efforts.
How much copy should your card have?
When properly designed, your postcard should command attention, pique interest and then prompt the reader to take action. Prompt the reader to visit a landing page on your website or call you for more information.
Your card should have enough copy to do those three things—and probably nothing more. That means being clear about what your big message is. What one thing does your audience want to know? And being clear about what you want your audience to do (download this e-book, register for our event, etc.).
Be concise. There’s no magic number of words that will generate a response. Shorter is (almost always) better. Can you sum up your audience’s problem (or your solution to that problem) in 10 words or less? Remember, you’re not explaining anything—you’re grabbing readers’ attention with the promise of a solution.
Think of your postcard as a headline for a newspaper or magazine story. You want to pique the audience’s interest and hint at what can be discovered. The only thing you’ll explain is how to get the answer (“click here to download,” or “visit our open house for information”).
Postcard mailings may be less expensive to print, cheaper to mail and faster to produce, but they still need to pull their weight. Make your card’s copy matches the format you’ve chosen, grabs the recipients’ attention and moves them to action.