Not too long ago, I talked about how to address formal mail properly for the 21st century. At the end of the post, I attempted to soften the hundreds of words of etiquette by saying that even if you don’t get it totally right, it’s the effort and thought that counts.
I’ve built a shiny metaphorical bandwagon, and I’m inviting you all to jump on and help me improve the quality and effectiveness of creative direct mail writing in 2020. At the same time, we’re going to—once and for all, I hope, although I know better—say a final farewell to a few nagging direct mail bad habits.
Is it “The Jones’” or “The Joneses”? How do you refer to families with multiple last names? What about married couples? Live-in family? A lot has changed about how you should address your holiday cards. We’re here to help …
It’s debated in boardrooms and break rooms. The subject of passionate internet screeds. And the source of endless squabbles in the neighborhood sandbox. What am I talking about? Whether long copy or short copy sells better in direct mail [...]
Are you a reader or a scanner? The world is full of both. That matters to those of us who include direct mail and direct response advertising as part of our marketing mix. If we don’t create direct mail designs that account for both of those information intake preferences, we risk losing a big chunk of our audience and their potential to respond.
Hey! Exclamation points are used in marketing copy writing a lot! Some might say too much! I agree! Cringeworthy, isn’t it? If readers can tell that too many exclamation points creates poor writing, why don’t we recognize it as writers? Probably because exclamation points can be effective [...]
It’s the little things in life that bring real joy. A cool drink on a hot day, a favorite song on the radio, a well-placed Oxford comma. Ah, yes, the Oxford comma: grammar’s hot-button issue (you may be shocked to hear that grammatists have tempers, but oh boy—the Oxford comma gets us going) [...]
Is using humor a good tactic—or strategy—for selling your product with direct marketing? Depends. That’s a good place to start. It depends on the product. If you were creating a direct marketing campaign for Depends Adult Incontinence products, humor might not be your strongest approach, a) because a certain sensitivity is called for in this category and b) it’s off brand. A humorous campaign for Huggies diapers? Different story.
From time to time, in direct marketing writing and design, we need to focus on the fundamentals to help us stay sharp in conveying the purpose and value proposition of what we’re selling. Why? Because so many direct marketing packages fail to answer these basic questions: Do we give our audience a reason to open? […]
Grammar is nit-picky and tricky, and it’s constantly evolving with our culture and turning hard-and-fast rules into bendable guidelines. Yes, there are still rules, but they can be a bit obscure or not entirely enforced in colloquial speaking, so we can run into situations in which following proper grammar rules makes writing sound overly formal […]