Direct mail masterpieces

This week’s snail-mail delivered a couple of real direct marketing smashers: intelligently targeted, perfectly timed, well designed, carefully thought through, generous and great to look at.

2 direct mail winners

The first is from Exotic India, one of my favourite websites.

The mailing arrived in a thick, textured white DL outer envelope, printed full colour, featuring an intricate design echoing the look and feel of the website.

Inside there’s a simple A4 letterhead sheet, again printed full colour and echoing the look and feel of the website. The letter itself is a personalised three paragraph masterpiece inviting me to visit the site and claim a whopping 25% seasonal discount. It’s written in wonderfully plain English with personality and verve.

Absolutely perfect. And impossible to resist. I fired up my PC after tea last night and bought a stunning hand-embroidered floor length silk coat from Kashmir.

Second, an equally lovely mailing from the Gardening Club

Opening the common or garden (pun intended!) C5 window envelope, there’s an A3 letter/voucher piece inside, folded twice to A5 and printed on nice quality stock.

The personalised letter is short, sweet and very well written. There’s a full colour invitation to their Christmas Fayre at the foot and top right there’s a personalised panel showing how many points we’ve accrued so far. The other half of the A3 sheet is perforated into 8 money-off and special offer vouchers.

There’s a sumptuous, beautifully crafted 10 page A5 leaflet too, packed with special offers and Christmas ideas. Gardening Club’s stuff is always top quality eye candy, mouthwateringly good to look at. So it’s a done deal. They’ve got me. I’ve just made a diary note to pop over the hill at the weekend and have a nice, long in-store rummage.

What about the money bit?

Say the Exotic India mailing pack cost £1 each to print, produce and mail out – feasible because print is cheaper in India than over here. I’ve spent just over £100. That’s a very decent return on their investment on my part. And I very much doubt I’m the only one, especially at this time of year.

I haven’t been involved with print buying for years but I guess the Gardening Club mailing, with its perforating and folding, full colour print, stapling and so on, could cost upwards of £2.50 per pack, depending on the print quantity. Knowing my shopping habits, I’ll leave their store at least £50 lighter. If enough people respond the same way as me, Gardening Club is onto a winner.