During the 2016 election cycle, there was more political direct mail than ever before. The United States Postal Service and The American Association of Political Consultants (AAPC) wanted to see how people viewed political mail, so they did a study about direct mail and its impact on voters. There are so many takeaways that can help you create political direct mail to win.
In 2018 we often get asked, does direct mail still work? YES! Here are a few facts about direct mail to show you the power you can harness:
- People check their mail at the first opportunity, which is nearly every day. You can reach your voters in a timely fashion without being forgotten.
- 86% of people go through the mail and make sure that nothing of value is being thrown out.
- 73% of people prefer direct mail over other marketing channels.
- Mail may be the best way to share new information about you as a candidate or an issue.
Radio and television do not allow you to target your prospects effectively. Your message ends up in front of people who cannot even vote for you. With direct mail, you have access directly to people who are able to vote for you. Take advantage of it! You can segment them into types of voters, propensity to vote and so much more.
When sending direct mail to voters, include important information about the election, such as voting deadlines for absentee ballots. Yes, you can target people who vote absentee with a different message than people who vote at the polls. You can also provide registration deadline information. Of course, include in the mail piece who you are, what you stand for and why people should vote for you. People keep mail that provides important information; get your mailer to stick around longer.
When polled about political mail voters responded with:
- 82% want to know where the candidate stands on issues
- 74% want a contrast with an opponent on issues
- 73% want to know a candidate’s voting record and any past statements made
- 60% want to see a list of who endorses the candidate.
We suggest that you use large format mailers to grab attention. According to a DMA 2017 response rate report, oversized pieces have been shown to increase response rates by 10.4%, producing the best overall response rate. You need to keep your text concise and easily scanned. Use bold, color and contrast to draw the eye to your important content. The easier you make it for people to quickly understand what you are saying, the better you are able to get your point across. Direct mail is better understood, remembered and acted upon more than digital channels. Add direct mail to your marketing mix to harness the votes you need to win.
Want to increase the time people spend with your mail pieces? Make them interactive. Add elements such as video, augmented reality, die cuts or endless folds to engage people. Video allows you as a candidate to speak directly to each voter about how you stand on issues and how you are different from other candidates. You can add special coatings or textures to really enhance the sensory reach of your mail piece. There are so many fun ways that direct mail can stand out that no other channel can do.
Are you ready to get started on your campaign?