10 Tips for Designing An Effective Postcard

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As direct mail is used for individualized outreach to customers and prospects, best practices for targeting via individualized postcards continue to evolve. NaviStone has put together some tips to help you get the best performance from your postcard retargeting campaigns.

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Tip 1: Plan Out Your Campaign

Today, most customer acquisition campaigns include multiple marketing channels. If your message is reaching potential customers across multiple channels, it is important to be consistent in your message.

Lay out your goals for your acquisition campaign and have a strong call to action for the campaign across all channels.

Tip 2: Eye-Catching Design

GRAB THEIR ATTENTION – catch the recipient’s attention right away. Don’t be wordy. Get to the point with an easy-to-read message. Your headline should be clear and have a benefit attached.

Visually Appealing Photos – show why your product or service is great in a photograph. Always remember - a picture is worth a Thousand Words!

Tip 3: Use Both Sides of the Postcard Creatively

Although there are areas on the address side of the postcard that must be clear as required by the USPS, don't disregard the address side. Studies show that the address side is the first side of the postcard that the reader sees since the postal carrier often delivers postcards address side up.

Tip 4: Call to Action

Be sure to include a strong call to action on your postcard. A call to action is just as important as the headline. Without giving your prospect clear instructions once they’ve read the postcard, they’re likely to toss it.

For professional services, something as simple as "Call Today" with a trackable phone number works well. If you have a store front, tell your recipients that you want them to visit your location.

With any calls to action, ask yourself: have I given them a reason to act? Have I provided them with a special discount, benefits, or an attention-grabbing offer that will incite them to choose my company?

Tip 5: Brief Benefits

Don't Attempt to Close - use your postcard to provoke sales inquiries, not “close the deal.” Because the space is limited on a postcard, you don't have enough room to provide all the information most prospects need to make a buying decision. Briefly present the major benefit(s) of your products or services to generate interest.

Tip 6b

Tip 6: Create Urgency

People are much more likely to take quick action and make a purchase when they face a deadline. Use words that convey urgency Example: Final Days! Summer Sale Ends Sunday, Last Chance: Limited Edition Shoes 50% Off! Order by Sunday to receive a FREE gift, Space is limited, clearance.

Tip 7: Establish Trust

If a prospect isn’t familiar with your company, testing has shown that social trust and trust icons can increase the conversion rate for your acquisition campaigns. Include customer testimonials, icons from accredited organizations such as Better Business Bureau, AMA, etc.

Tip 8: Eliminate Risk

Eliminate the risk of doing business with your organization by including a guarantee for the services or products you are offering.

Tip 9: Make it Simple

Aways include your URL and a trackable phone number on all your campaign postcards.

Tip 10: Finally, Don't Forget Your Logo

You want recipients to quickly identify who you are, so don’t forget to leave space in your design to place your company’s logo.

As with most marketing deliverables, the piece will only be as effective as the strategy put into it. While we live in a digital world full of different social media platforms, endless videos, and countless advertisements, physical objects and information activate more senses and make a greater, more lasting impact.


Real objects are still seen as valuable, and a direct mail piece is no exception to the rule. Purely digital media offers great efficiency, reach, and targeting. But a true omnichannel marketing strategy can often see substantial performance improvements by including well executed offline elements. In our experience the postcard is a powerful media choice!

In fact, it’s always a good idea to do a review to ensure that you incorporate your brand identity. Sometimes when adding a new media channel a few of the basics get missed. But consistent use of all your brand assets helps trigger brand memory and drives creative effectiveness.


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