How to Create a Powerful Mail Campaign

If you’re still debating whether or not you should try this old school marketing superstar, read our roadmap to your first successful direct mail campaign.
Create your own direct mail marketing campaign

We’ve talked a lot about direct mail. You should use it because it offers a high ROI with low investment. It’s effective because people like it and are naturally receptive to it. And it’s easy to get started with, no matter what kind of business you have.

But we haven’t talked much about how to actually plan, create, and execute a direct mail campaign.

If you’re still debating whether or not you should try this old school marketing superstar, here’s our roadmap to your first successful direct mail campaign.

1) Planning

You don’t want to fire off a direct mail campaign without giving it some serious thought.

Think about what message you want to convey to your potential customers, and what kind of goal would benefit your business.

Here are a few potential goals to get you started:

  • Selling a specific product
  • Raising awareness in your community
  • Boosting enrollment in a program you offer
  • Getting people to join your email list
  • Getting people to come in on their birthday to spend more money
  • Getting people to connect with your social media
  • Reminding people of an upcoming deadline that your business helps solve

If you’re still confused, take a look at the direct mail that comes to your own home. Look at it closely, and try to uncover the message behind the mailer.

For advertising circulars with plenty of glossy pictures, they’re trying to sell specific products.

For advertisements for a local dance class, they’re trying to boost enrollment.

One piece of mail we recently received was a colorful postcard from a local pizza chain. The “Now Open!” message was a way of raising awareness that a new pizza joint exists in our neighborhood.

2) Creating

Not sure you can pull off direct mail by yourself? You don’t have to go it alone. Moving Targets has helped thousands of small businesses boost revenue and create direct mail campaigns that work.

Otherwise, you’ll have to consult a graphic designer and a printing company to create your mailer.

While you certainly can work one-on-one with designers and printers, it’s a lot of work. And partnering with a seasoned advertising agency allows you to get an inside-look on campaigns that have succeeded in the past, as well as easily avoiding common mistakes.

If you do create your campaign by yourself, remember the following tips to create a more effective direct mailer:

  • Each piece of mail should only have one CTA (call to action)
  • Use bright colors or eye-catching designs
  • Make sure your message is clearly readable
  • Consult your local mail delivery service to make sure you don’t pay more in postage
  • Include some method of tracking (like a QR, special link, or coupon code)

In general, direct mail advertisements rely on the same strong fundamentals as any other kind of advertising, so it makes sense to consult agencies that have direct mail experience.

3) Mail it

Eventually, you have to send your mail out. It’s not stupid to include this step — a lot of people struggle with dithering over design choices, worrying about failure, and coping with nervousness.

But one day, you’ll have to finalize your results and send the mailers out.

From there, you’ll want to use the tracking you set up in step two to how effective your campaign is. You can also keep a close eye on your revenue, or if you’re software based, push out a survey asking new customers how they found you.

It may take more than one mail campaign to reach peak effectiveness, but a solid first campaign is always a good place to start.

4) Revise & Improve

Mailing your campaign out isn’t the end of the story. In marketing, there’s always room to revise and improve.

You can also revise and improve when first mailing out the direct mail by using A/B testing — sending out two slightly different variations of the same mailer to see which one garners more response.

As email marketers know, the slightest changes in typeface, color, and font size can produce dramatic differences in response rates. The more trials you do, the more effective your campaigns will be, which will later improve your ROI.


Direct mail marketing can seem intimidating. It has a lot of moving parts, from the design and message, to actually mailing your campaign out.

But the results are worth it. Many local businesses rely on direct mail to create a predictable stream of revenue. And partnering with a marketing agency can help improve your chances of creating a successful direct mail campaign.

See what direct mail can do for you! Contact our team of Marketing Consultants to see how we can help you reach new customers in your area today.

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