5 tips on getting them to open your direct mail

Shiny_silver_envelope Let's assume that people would really benefit from using your product and the special offer you've got going is genuinely incredible.

Isn't it a shame that most of them will never even have a shot at discovering just how much they'd love both your price and your product — because they'll never open the envelope?

We have all sorted mail over the garbage can.  Each piece has less than 2 seconds to either catch our attention or flutter down into the circular file cabinet.  So what will make yours pass the 2 second test?

Try one of these five ideas on for size:

Size, color & shape matter

The most common USA envelope size is a #10. In much of the rest of the world it's just a hair bigger and called an A-4.   You know exactly what this sized envelope looks like – you receive a handful of them every single day.

As you might imagine…they don't get you a lot of extra attention.

But…both smaller and larger envelopes can greatly affect response.  Whatever size you use – every so often test other sizes to find the best performer.

Color can also make a huge difference in response.  Test color.

Just as size matters, so does shape. If you have a product or service that makes sense, why not try an odd shape. A round or even square envelope will get immediate attention.

Teaser copy

Don't wait until they open the envelope to start talking to them.  Let teaser copy catch their attention and pull the reader inside to take action.

If you are addressing your own customers, teaser copy may not be needed. They see your logo, they know you, they'll open your mail.

But for those prospects, why not start on the outside and give your reader a reason to go in.


Our world is graphic. And three-dimensional.  And bright!

Your audience expects graphics. So, give them what they expect. And begin on your envelope.   Let your piece dictate the tone of the visual.  Illustration versus photograph is a worthy discussion.  A chart or graph can be effective on your envelope, too.

But catch their eye and you will catch their attention.

Do something different

Print your envelope upside down. Or front to back, with the flap on the front rather than the back.

Do something out of the ordinary for your business  or for your industry. Look at what everyone else is doing and run in the opposite direction.

Be bold…be noticeable.  And be something they can't resist opening.

Embrace your lumpiness

3-dimensional works.

People always open a box, a tube, a bubble pack, or any other lumpy package. Let's be honest — it feels and looks like a present.  Who isn't going to open that?

And more to the point…when the boss gets a lumpy package, who is going to risk opening it?  What if it is something he ordered from a catalog you don't want to know anything about?

How about we put them all together….imagine an over-sized, bright silver colored lumpy bubble pack envelope with some teaser copy on the address label?  I guarantee that no matter what you put inside…it would get seen.

How do I know this?  I've seen the beast itself.  And at MMG, we're going to be using some.  My friend Mitch Matthews scored 48,000 of the envelopes you see in the photo at the top of the post.  He's selling them below wholesale cost and I bought a bunch.  But he still has a bunch more.  He's offered to let my readers in on the deal…so I am telling you about them.  Check them out and see if you can benefit from getting these envelopes opened!

I don't make a dime…I just want your mail to get opened.  If you can get a bargain to boot, who is going to argue with that?

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