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8 Tips to a Successful Direct Mail Campaign

8 Tips to a Successful Direct Mail Campaign

Sending direct mail is one of the most effective ways to reach voters. In a world of constant misinformation, 66% of Americans say they trust direct mail versus other forms of political advertising. If done right, it’s a powerful and impactful tool that should be incorporated into any political or public affairs campaign.

1. Use High-Quality Photos 

Photos, or the lack thereof, can make or break a direct mail piece. High-quality photos can captivate your audience and show professionalism in a campaign. Be sure to team up with a photographer at the beginning of your campaign. 

2. Be Personal 

Tell a compelling personal story that ties back to the campaign messaging. A direct mail program should tell a story of who you are and what you stand for, beginning with a bio, leading into where you stand on issues, and lastly, concluding with a GOTV message. 

3. Make It Local 

Customizing your mail to feature photos of local landmarks, helpful town government phone numbers, or even the high school football schedule tells voters that you’re invested in the community that they take pride in. 

4. Do Less 

Direct mail should be designed with the assumption that the voter is only going to skim it. That means you need to use concise and clear copy to communicate. Using subheadings, bullet points, and graphics helps convey your points in an easily digestible way. 

5. Own Your Brand 

Be consistent in your use of logos, brand colors, and fonts. Over time, people will recognize your campaign, especially if you communicate across multiple TV or digital platforms.

6. Repeat Yourself 

It’s important to start your direct mail campaign early and hit mailboxes multiple times during the campaign. Doing just one piece of mail is a waste. For direct mail to work, it must be repetitive with multiple impressions to the intended targets. 

7. Know Your Audience 

Good data and targeting are essential parts of any direct mail campaign. Direct mail allows you to know exactly who is receiving your campaign materials, unlike TV, digital, and radio advertising. Therefore, it’s important to cut and carve your audience to include those voters you need to communicate with and then tailor your message accordingly. 

8. Tell Them What to Do 

Finally, you need to convey what you want voters to do clearly. Do you want them to vote for you? When? How? Laying out a clear call to action and giving the voter as much information as possible makes it easier for them to do what you want them to.

Persuading with Video: 3 Essential Rules for Scriptwriting

Persuading with Video: 3 Essential Rules for Scriptwriting

Whether you are hoping to influence decision-makers, voters, or stakeholders, video is, by far, more effective than any other format —  but only when you use it right. Despite the widespread use of video, many organizations don’t know the best way to use it. Video persuasion must be emotional, believable, relatable, and of an appropriate length to change minds. Here’s how to use videos the right way.

1. Make the first few seconds count.

This is when internet users decide whether or not to scroll. You have less than 3 seconds to draw them in. Make it count. See rule number three for the best ways to keep their attention.

2. Keep it short.

Users are more likely to watch short videos to completion, thus more likely to hear your whole message. 30 seconds is the absolute maximum. If you’re hoping to persuade an audience on an issue, that audience probably isn’t likely to want to watch a video on that topic voluntarily. That is, unless you can keep it short enough for them to find it worthwhile to see what happens.

3. Use at least one of the following: storytelling, emotion, or hard facts.

When you are the expert on a subject and the one doing the persuading, you may think that others will find your issue position persuasive for the same reasons you do. For example, if you are a proponent of creating jobs with infrastructure investment, you may be tempted to write a script with the top-line numbers, such as the $2.6 trillion investment gap. The truth is, in a fast-moving digital world, users are only willing to watch videos for a few reasons:

  • to be entertained (storytelling)
  • to be inspired (emotion)
  • to learn something new (hard facts)

A concept like the $2.6 trillion investment gap simply doesn’t inspire a user to any of those actions and thus won’t persuade most users. It’s a good statistic to include in a video, but it shouldn’t be the main focus. Here are three alternative examples:

Essential Campaign Tools: Direct Mail

Essential Campaign Tools: Direct Mail

Invest in a proven tactic. Here’s why direct mail is a valuable tactic for your campaign.

Year after year, direct mail continues to prove itself as an essential tool for winning campaigns. It is the most persuasive and cost-effective messenger for candidates trying to reach swing voters. Here’s why:

  • You make the decision: Direct mail allows candidates to decide exactly when they want their messages to be received by their target audiences. Ninety-eight percent of consumers bring in their mail the same day it’s delivered.
  • Mail allows you to integrate, repeat, and validate: Multiple pieces to a target audience allow candidates to reinforce their messages and gain name recognition. Direct mail’s effectiveness can also be boosted by layering it with digital.
  • Mail is powerful and targeted: It has eight seconds from the mailbox to the trash can. Effective direct mail will catch the voters’ eyes with quality photography and engage them with concise and targeted messaging.
  • Mail drives voters to take action: Over half of Americans said that they are more likely to search for information on a candidate after receiving mail. Candidates can direct voters to visit their websites for more information or to donate to the campaign.
At JVA Campaigns

We cut our teeth on high-stakes electoral politics in some of the country’s most pivotal states, where agility and the ability to shift tactics at a moment’s notice can mean the difference between failure and success. Get in touch with us.