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  • Posted by: We Mail America

How to Design a Direct Mail Piece

Direct mail is one of the most effective ways to reach your target audience easily. According to Forbes’ research, 57% of respondents prefer being contacted by direct mail. They say it creates an authentic relationship and makes them feel valued.

As a marketer, you need to understand that you’re not the only one sending mails to your prospects. And this is where your creativity is needed the most to create an irresistible direct mail piece. You need to make it more enticing to your target audience and make them want to read it.

Some marketers design their direct mails on their own while others outsource the work to someone else. Whichever route you take, you’ll need some tips when creating your direct mail piece.
So here are few tips to help you with the design process!


Come up With a Strategy

What are your goals? Who is your target audience? Which strategy are you going to use when sending the direct mail?

These are some of the things you need to factor in before you begin crafting your direct mail piece. In designing a successful brand, everything requires a well-thought plan. Without a well-planned strategy, you won’t make it with your direct mail campaigns.


1.  Who are You Targeting?



Unless you are sending your mails under the every door direct mail (EDDM) mail service, you don’t want your mails to reach everyone and anyone. Narrow down your target audience list to a few prospects.

When you have a list of your prospects list ready audience, you now identify their needs and pen down an enticing direct mail piece.

Your mailings should only target specific individuals based on their needs, location, gender, age, desires, and purchasing habits, among other things.


2.  What are Your Reasons for Mailing?


You won’t design a good direct mail piece if you don’t have a clear goal in mind.

When pinpointing your goals, make them specific and relevant. Building your brand and generating awareness are too general to be called goals – every marketer has them in mind.

Also, make your goals measurable. Have a way of measuring the leads that come from your direct mailing campaigns. Again, timeliness is an important aspect when defining your Mailing goals.


3.  Which Format Will You Use?


Having a strategy, a mailing list, and goals will help you design a direct mail piece. But without the right format, your direct mail marketing won’t bear you any fruits – no matter how hard you try.

When it comes to direct mail format, you can choose between postcards, brochures, or menus. Your choice will be influenced by the volume of your content, your target audience, and the objectives you want to achieve.


4.  How Will You Organize Your Piece?

Headlines, tracking information, offers, call to action, and benefits are some of the essential components of a direct mail piece.

However, how you organize these components in your piece will determine the impact they will have on your target audience.

To help you organize your piece well, you must come up with a grid layout. This will help you divide your piece and know exactly where to place the critical components of your advertisement.


Designing the Piece

Once you’re done planning, you can now begin designing your direct mail piece. But before you get on to that, here are some tips for you:


1.  Use the Right Images



A direct mail piece is never complete without some images. However, it is the kind of images and how you use them that matters the most. The images should “speak” to your target audience. High-resolution photos will easily capture the interest of your target audience.

When choosing the right images, don’t use busy backgrounds on your direct mail piece, as they may likely distort the message you’re trying to convey. Also, avoid adding texts on your images since they may not project as intended.


2.  Choose the Right Fonts



You won’t use the same font to write the whole piece. When designing your direct mail piece, make sure to use the correct fonts. One should be able to scan your ad without much strain.

Also, try to use varying font sizes to capture the interest of your target audience. For instance, use a larger font on headings.


3.  Make Good Use of the White Spaces

A crowded piece will be hard to follow and will make your target audience lose their focus on what is written.

Use the white spaces to get your message out. When we say white space, we are not referring to colors but the blank areas on your piece. Do not overstuff your piece with texts and images, leaving no white spaces. Organize your work well.


Proofread Your Piece

Once you finish designing your direct mail piece, don’t be in a hurry to mail it without going through it once again.

You can start by editing the piece yourself before handing it over to someone else to put a second eye on it.

Proofing will help you identify errors such as spelling and grammar mistakes. It will also help you know if the design of the direct mail piece is in line with your goals and whether the message is clearly conveyed.

Also, don’t forget to check on your contact points – phone numbers, email, QR codes, and links.

After proofing the piece yourself, have someone else, perhaps a friend, a colleague, an employee, or even a customer look at it again. The direct mail piece must contain no errors when being mailed to your prospects.



The success of direct mail marketing depends on the design of your direct mail piece. When designing your piece, you must have a strategy highlighting your target audience, goals, and the format you intend to use.

The piece must contain the right images and fonts. You also need to use the white spaces to your advantage. Lastly, don’t forget to proof and edit your direct mail piece before sending it to your target audience. And with the tips above, nothing will stop you from designing the best direct mail pieces and using them to market your products and services.