First impressions are everything. The first interaction a new prospect has with your company is through advertising in almost every case. This includes digital and print, from your website and social media to your prints ads and direct mail.
If these interactions are negative, you’ve almost for certain lost them as a potential customer. People associate the quality of your service based on the quality of the materials they receive. For this reason, you should put serious consideration into the graphic design of all your marketing.
Good graphic design not only enhances your credibility, but it inspires confidence and communicates your message to your audience. Here are four important graphic design tips to consider in your direct mail marketing:
Use high-quality imagery that speaks to your audience.
Not only should images on your direct mail piece be print quality (300 dpi), but they should compliment your overall message and brand. Using low resolutions images will only pixellate and appear blurry when it prints. This reflects poorly on your brand image, and will create a negative impression of your services.
Your direct mail company will be able to answer any questions on your images and guide you in finding the right ones.
Maintain consistent branding guidelines.
Use colors, fonts, slogans, and logos that are consistent with your other marketing materials because this will increase your brand identity's value over time.
Think of the Nike Swoosh, or even the Facebook "F." The moment people see these elements they can immediately associate with the company. This should be a long-term goal in all your marketing. You want to immediately be recognized the moment customers and prospects see your direct mail marketing.
Keep your message to-the-point and targeted to your ideal clients.
Ensure your message is relatable and relevant to your demographic. Use language that speaks to their concerns and is on their level. If your target audience is consumers, you don’t want the messaging to be to business-centric.
You also want to keep the message short. Not only are huge blocks of text visually unpleasing, but most people won’t read it all. You want to give people enough information to get the point across, but leave them wanting more. After all, the goal is to get them to contact you or visit your website.
Keep the layout of your mail piece balanced.
The layout is essential to good graphic design. You want the placement of your text, images, logos and other design elements arranged in a way that guides people's eyes to the most important pieces of information.
The appropriate use of bold text or negative space in your direct mail design will make important text stand out. Don't be afraid of white space as a natural separator between sections of your design. And carefully consider your use of colors. Researchers found that colored visuals increase people's willingness to read a piece of content by 80% (Source).