When it comes to designing a direct mail marketing campaign, there are a lot of different factors that determine if it will be successful such as design, copy, time of send, packaging and list targeting, just to name a few. But, have you ever stopped to consider what could cause your campaign to be unsuccessful? It may seem counterintuitive to focus on the “don’ts” of direct mail marketing, but it can actually be a helpful thought exercise to make sure you’ve considered everything before your campaign reaches its audience. Here, a list of the biggest “don’ts” to avoid when designing your next mail campaign:

DON’T try to do too much at once — focus on one clear CTA

One of top mail mistakes that many businesses are guilty of when designing a direct mail marketing campaign is forgetting to hone in on a clear CTA or call-to-action. When target customers are viewing your mailpiece, they should immediately have a sense of why they received it and what the main takeaways are. It can be tempting to try to provide answers to every single question your target customers may have, but that’s a really easy way to dilute your main message. Believe it or not, providing too much information can be a bad thing. Instead, you should make your messaging clear and concise with a CTA that inspires action such as, “Visit our website to learn more about our services” or “Call today to receive a quote from our team of specialists”.

DON’T forget to review proofs carefully

It might seem tempting to just give a printed proof a quick once-over and seal of approval — especially if you’ve already reviewed several proofs of prior versions — but this is one of the biggest “don’ts” when it comes to direct mail. That’s because failing to catch mistakes or flag necessary adjustments when reviewing your proof will lead to your target customer seeing a less impressive version of the message you were trying to send. Nothing undermines a brand’s credibility like a typo or printing mistake, because it inadvertently conveys the message that attention to detail is not something your business values.

DON’T make it difficult for people to take action

What’s the best way to get somebody to do something? Make it as easy as possible for them to do it! This is the mentality you should have when designing a direct mail campaign. First, determine what you want your targeted customer to do. Next, craft a clear and concise CTA (as mentioned above). Finally, think through the next steps a customer would have to take in order to complete the action you want them to, whether that’s pick up the phone, visit your website or grab a pen to fill out a response. By thinking this through, you can help determine how to make their path to action as seamless as possible.

For example, if you’re a non-profit trying to collect holiday donations, you should make it as easy as possible for people to donate via mail by including a prepaid, pre-addressed return envelope. By eliminating any possible friction that might deter someone from taking the action you want them to, it can help with the overall conversion rate of your campaign.

DON’T underestimate the power of a reputable print and mail house

Don’t make the mistake of partnering with a mail house or printing company that doesn’t specialize in your business’ needs. Instead, be sure to partner with a company that has a proven track record handling campaigns similar to the one you’ve designed. At Digital Dog Direct, we can handle all aspects of executing your direct mail campaign; we are a reliable mailhouse and printer all in one, backed by over 20 years of experience.

Has your business accidentally committed one of these “don’ts” in the past? Make sure to keep it in the past by partnering with Digital Dog Direct for your next campaign.