Creativity Steals the Show

I got to check out the DMA show in Boston yesterday.  Tim has been to a bazillion of these events, but it was my first direct marketing trade show.  I had expected it to be crammed with only mailing list companies, but there was so much more!  I came home with a bag full of samples of direct mail ideas!

Two ideas stood out so clearly and are so wonderfully applicable to everyone involved with mailing, that I just have to share the inspiration.  (In case you’re wondering, I am not affiliated with either company in any way – I just really like their products.)

Shaped Mailers Why mail an ordinary postcard or letter?  People rush through their mail, giving only a moment’s thought before deciding whether or not to throw a marketing piece in the trash.  It’s hard to stand out from the crowd and not end up in the recycling bin.  But the mail samples at ShipShapes were so cute that I brought a bunch home with me for my kids to play with.

Mail.  For my kids to play with.  I’m not a mail dork, I promise.  Seriously, these pieces are that fun.  And talk about getting lasting attention – I wouldn’t have the heart to throw these pieces into the trash if they arrived in the mail.  I have admit, my favorite is the cutout of the Aflac duck.  I’m not sure who is going to enjoy playing with him more – the kids or I.

Handwritten Addresses I’m an old-fashioned gal.  Yes, I love my modern gadgets (I don’t know how I existed before I got an iPhone … even though I just bought it 2 weeks ago), but I miss the personal touch of “old fashioned” communication.  Everyone likes to see their own name … and even better if another person took the time to write it out by hand rather than used a computer program to spit it out of a printer.

Apparently, I’m not the only one who feels that way, because the guy at Think Ink Marketing gave me a brochure with some impressive response rate comparisons.  (They didn’t have samples … they were giving away brownies instead.  Those didn’t make it back to the kids.)

There were some other interesting ideas being presented at the show – mailers with seeds embedded in the paper that you can plant, business cards that fold out like maps, website avatars, QR codes, etc. – but I didn’t think they were as attention grabbing or as adaptable to nearly any direct mail marketing project as the top 2.

What got your attention at the DMA show?

Amy Badurina

About Amy Badurina

Amy Badurina is the Marketing Director at Complete Medical Lists. She is also a small business owner, making her acutely aware of the challenges small businesses face when trying to market themselves. She is passionate about good design, photography, and her three little boys.
This entry was posted in direct mail, trade shows and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Creativity Steals the Show

  1. Ben Waugh says:

    Nice site. There?s some good information on here. I?ll be checking back regularly.

  2. Hey Amy!

    Will you be at DMA this year in Chicago?! I’d love to meet more old-fashioned handwritten addresses folk like yourself. I totally agree, btw, that “everyone likes to see their own name … and even better if another person took the time to write it out by hand rather than used a computer program to spit it out of a printer.”

    Our company has case studies, like TIM gave you, about our handwritten letter service. I’d love to share them with you :)