Today’s marketers need to develop campaigns for an expanding array of media channels. Direct mail, mobile advertising, social media networks, email marketing, digital billboards – the choices are almost endless! It’s simply never been more critical to make sure you’re consistently representing your brand in the marketplace.
Your brand is your promise to your customer. It tells them what they can expect from your company and is the foundation on which trust and loyalty are built. As Kenny Kirsch writes for Brandobility, “Consistent branding not only commands authority, it builds trust and familiarity between you and your customers.”
When it comes to direct mail, the eye scans each piece in seconds. If your mailpiece’s design and messaging aligns with your core branding principles and guidelines, there is a good chance you’ll get brand recognition (or at least start to develop it).
Follow this five-point guide to brand building in direct marketing:
- Adhere to logo-use guidelines. Make sure the color is exactly right and keep the proper spacing from borders, taglines, and copy.
- Practice consistent typesetting. Use the same headline and text fonts for direct mail that you use in company brochures, sales materials, and websites.
- Stay on message. Yes, priority one is to solicit a response in direct marketing but leave room for key brand positioning statements to reinforce brand recall.
- Aim for a seamless look. If your call-to-action includes a website or landing-page link, include graphic elements on the mailpiece that your reader will also find online.
- Design from the same palette. Establish a set of colors that work well on all of your company’s print and digital materials — and stick with it.
Some organizations think they know their corporate identity but have never put it down on paper. If you don’t have a branding style guide, now is the time to create one.
Style guides range from simple five-pagers to extensive multi-chapter manuals comprised of specifications for the use of logos, copy, type, design, colors, personality, and promise. Consumers and business buyers alike prefer and rely on companies with strong branding, and a branding style guide is the best way to get everyone at your organization on the same page.
Direct mail is a highly visible medium particularly when you use personalization, vivid imaging, and targeted messaging. Drawing from imagery used for a TV campaign, a company website, or print ads can positively impact response and build upon brand loyalty. Now, when you strategize the direct component of your marketing mix, think of it as “direct branding” as well as direct marketing.
Editor’s Note: This post was originally published on April 18, 2014 and has been modified for accuracy.