Through all of the changes and digital options available in our world, print remains one of the most popular and effective marketing methods. According to the Harvard Business Review, direct mail has an average response rate of nearly 25 percent. As with anything, there is still a cost associated with sending physical mailers or creating printed brand materials. However, with so many options available in the printing world, there are always ways to make the most of your budget.
To help you get as much bang for your buck, we’re letting you in one some of our most effective print marketing hacks. Before finalizing the details on your next campaign, check out our list and find out if there are other ways to minimize your total costs.
Choose Convenient Colors
Although Pantone is often considered the standard color system by many designers, printers are set up to work best with CMYK colors. When your designs use Pantone colors, they require spot color printing, which means the printer must use specific inks just for your project, significantly increasing your costs. If you decide to convert your Pantone-colored design to CMYK, you risk losing some of the vibrancy and brightness in the conversion. To avoid these issues and minimize costs, design your print pieces with CMYK colors from the get-go.
For most print pieces, some kind of protective coating is needed to ensure the print will survive its journey through the mail. As such, many kinds of paper are already coated to protect the print. However, many clients like to add additional coatings to make their pieces even more durable. One option some want to try is spot coating, which can seem like a more economic choice because it uses less coating overall. However, spot coating does typically require an additional printing plate to be made, which will drive up costs. Instead, opt for all-over coating to completely protect your prints, save costs and make the entire process simpler.
For many direct mail campaigns, postcards are the preferred kind of mailer because they are spacious, durable and attract attention. If you can effectively communicate your message on a postcard rather than paper stuffed in an envelope, we recommend selecting the postcard. Using these mailers mean you can ditch the envelope, which adds an additional and unnecessary cost. Depending on the size of your campaign, you can save hundreds or even thousands on envelope costs. You can also save time by removing the need to stuff and seal each individual envelope.
More is Less
If your project involves prints that you’ll continue using at your business for an extended period of time, consider printing all of the copies you think you’ll need at once. Typically, printers can offer substantial discounts when you print at a higher volume. As your total number of prints increases, the cost per piece will decrease. For example, printing 10,000 copies of your new brochure at once will be cheaper in the long run than printing 5,000 two separate times. Additionally, minimizing your number of print runs means you don’t have to pay fixed costs, including pre-press and plate making, as many times.
Scrub Your Mailing Lists
Ultimately, the actual names and address on your mailing list are crucial to the success of a direct mail campaign. When you’ve worked hard on your campaign, you want to ensure that your pieces are going to real people at their current addressees. According to the US Postal Service, 40 million Americans change their address every year, which can muddy the accuracy of every mailing list. Every mailer you send to a bad or outdated address is money thrown out the window. Thankfully, there are many direct mail cleaning services that can verify every address on your mailing list. These services can be quite affordable, especially if you keep your lists cleaned on a regular basis, and you can begin your campaign feeling confident that every dollar is being used responsibly.