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Creative Campaign Examples Using Direct Mail

Welcome to the Dove Direct Print and Marketing Blog. Today's post, "Creative Campaign Examples Using Direct Mail," offers several multichannel marketing campaigns that many deem successful while showcasing a marketing model that results in higher effectiveness and heightened engagement levels. Reaching and engaging both customers and prospects, in a sense, is more complex, with the marketing playing field simultaneously offering a plethora of media outlets to leverage brand communications. Conversely, the public is becoming more numb to marketing messages by the minute, as a bombardment of 10,000 plus ad impressions per day is untenable. Given the ongoing pandemic, the onslaught of marketing messages is driving a wedge of sorts between brands and the recipients receiving those communications. The good news is that creative ideas can make all the difference in attracting and engaging audiences, regardless of the demographics, and for that matter, the bombardment. Good advertising resonates irrespective of the crowded marketing waters.  Hence, we are delighted to spotlight a few creative ad campaigns that enjoyed success by breaking through the conundrum of clutter. 

Our Quote of the Day: 
"On the average, five times as many people read the headline as read the body copy. When you have written your headline, you have spent eighty cents out of your dollar." — David Ogilvy

If Not Humans, Than Machines

For decades the challenge for humans to stop destroying the planet has fallen on deaf ears around the globe.  Although, the recent COP26 summit, aka Glasgow Climate Change Conference (UNFCCC COP 26), may be a step in the right direction for nearly 200 countries.  Attendees declare that the negotiations may get us closer to a fundamental global policy that will help to save the planet. Although the action is more "phase down" rather than "phase out" fossil fuels, attendees find the global effort promising for multiple reasons.

Meanwhile, AKQA, aka (All Known Questions Answered), is taking the fight to the machinery instead of the humans. AKQA, an experience-design organization, recently developed open-source software with the moniker Code of Conscience. The code of conscience software design limits the use of heavy-duty vehicles entering vulnerable areas by combining geolocation data with the United Nation's World Database. The chip that contains the software will halt any machinery attempting to drive into a designated vulnerable area.

For now, the challenge for AKQA is to reach leaders and C-Suite decision-makers. To do this, AKQA chose to design a uniquely targeted direct mail campaign. The campaign involved sending wooden sculptures of endangered species, complete with a Code of Conscience chip embedded, to the CEOs of the top 10 construction equipment manufacturers, inviting them to install the chip in all new vehicles. This marketing messaging initiative includes the requisite video message featuring a prominent indigenous Brazilian leader, Chief Raoni Metuktire thereby, gaining traction with the media and industry. 

As a result, manufacturers have begun discussing how to implement the code, with two countries working to turn the code into law. This direct marketing campaign successfully engaged leaders who could take immediate action and included a prominent voice of reason.  It made it easy to target problem areas with little cost to the manufacturer by bypassing humans and employing machinery.

Direct Mail Delivered By Ravens

Yes, that's a true statement, and it's not out of a sci-fi thriller with special effects. George R. R. Martin, the author of Game of Thrones, was the featured speaker for the Chicago Humanities Festival.  As a result, the organization selected Westeros's second most winged protagonists ravens to deliver the message.  Yes, ravens. Interestingly enough, dragons did not make the cut, as the vote came in that they were considered far too temperamental. 

As the story goes, ravens flew across the Windy City and delivered parchment scrolls to homes, high rises, and other notable destinations. This out-of-the-sky marketing endeavor was considered the nation's first-ever direct mail marketing campaign delivered by a raven. This marketing exercise played out in real-time in front of thousands of residents, with imagery reminiscent of how birds played a decisive role in Martin's fantasy world, acting as delivery mechanisms between castles and cities. 

The purpose behind this marketing effort was to promote the CHF (Chicago Humanities Festival) memberships. The targeted recipients could gain early access to year-round tickets and a chance to attend a speaking engagement featuring Martin at the Chicago Symphony Orchestra.  For supporters of the orchestra and fans of the author, the campaign was rave-worthy.   The direct mail campaign delivered by ravens garnered media attention and tremendous word-of-mouth effects.   Edgar Allen Poe would be proud of what The Raven accomplished. 

Non-Profit Messaging for Non-Profits

The announcement of the pandemic hit North America right about the time that the global Christian ministry, Hour of Power, was sending its monthly appeal letters. Asking the faithful to dip twice didn't seem right but ignoring the need did not resonate either. To address the latter, Hour of Power had its marketing agency design a special edition mail piece to inform its donor base meticulously while delivering hope to many. As the thinking went, the agency decided that sending out the planned message with a call to action was too risky, as that could damage donor relationships given the pandemic-related issues and timeframe. The marketing effort needed to be more than just messaging and fundraising. Moreover, it was an opportunity for the brand to demonstrate empathetic context with its donors. The exercise was less about the brand remaining relevant but understanding what people were experiencing from the brand's viewpoint.

The additional direct mail piece offering topical, relevant information generated the highest response rate and second-highest revenue of all Hour of Power mailers sent out in 2020. The piece's success has resulted in creating follow-up letters for future mailers that include topical content. This type of direct mail also helps ensure donors receive up-to-date, relevant information reflecting what donors are experiencing.

The Net-Net

The three creative campaign examples should stimulate creative ideas for any challenges requiring breaking through a vast amount of advertising clutter.  These examples prove that relevant communications that depict essential topics of the day can be woven into marketing messaging to increase engagement and response rates.

The secondary aspect of incorporating relevant messaging means that brand equity will enjoy a positive spike, thereby helping to increase brand acceptance and viability. The final takeaway is that brands can speak to their audience experiences while selling a product, service, or solution. The shining star in all of these examples is the viability and importance of direct mail marketing.  From a raven to a chip to a letter or topical postcard, the edge of creativity certainly deserves a shot.  Might we add, postcards anyone?  We hope you found value in this article, and thanks for reading "Creative Campaign Examples Using Direct Mail!"

Let's talk about integrated business solutions and how they can move your messages forward, help grow your business, change behavior, and improve the customer experience. Let us show you how to improve your document processes to optimize your workflow, reduce costs, and maximize your organization's printing, letter shop, and mailing capabilities. Dove Direct has an official USPS certified bureau located within our offices to save you time and money. We can even create a demo file for you. For more information, call Carla Eubanks at 404-629-0122 or email Carla at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. 

Dove Direct, your Atlanta vertical integrated print and mail solutions provider, offers organizations end-to-end data, printing, and mailing solutions: 

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