The strategic use of psychology in direct mail can drive amazing results. Did you know that our brain is doing most of its work outside of our consciousness? If we are able to create a good direct mail psychology strategy that enables us to tap into subconscious decisions, we can generate a greater response from prospects and customers.
How can this work?
- Emotional Triggers — Both men and women need emotional engagement for direct mail to work. This requires the use of both good emotional copy and imagery. Segmentation can really help you target the right people with the right emotional copy and images.
- Overload — When there is too much clutter of messages, either copy or images, the brain cannot process it. Make sure that you leave white space and use concise copy so that the brain can easily process your message.
- Interesting — The brain likes puzzles and humor. Keep them simple for easy understanding. They are effective, with increased engagement.
- Women and Empathy — If your audience is women, you need to tap into empathy. Women engage with images depicting faces and direct eye contact. Women also respond to group/community activity images and, of course, babies, too. Some women will pay attention to messages that make life easier, celebrate her or allow her to do multiple things.
A complicated mail message will most likely be ignored by the brain. There are ways to simplify your copy and images to capture attention.
How to Capture Attention
Novelty — This is the No. 1 way to capture attention. Our brains are trained to look for something new and cool. A novel message or layout can really help you stand out in the mail box.
Eye Contact — Humans are social beings. Images of people or animals making eye contact with your prospects or customers grab attention and draw them into the mail piece.
When you are able to integrate a multiple sensory experience into your mail piece, you create a richer and deeper engagement with your audience.
How to use the senses:
- Vision — A quarter of the human brain is used for visual processing. It is the strongest sense we have. Great images can compel high response rates for your direct mail.
- Smell — Our sense of smell is hard-wired directly to our memory and emotions. Smells can invoke immediate reactions. This can be harder to do with direct mail, but when used correctly, it is powerful. If you do decide to use a scent, make sure it fits your branding and message.
- Taste — Although it is possible to make edible direct mail, getting people to actually try it is another story. This is a good sense, but smell can trigger what you need without trying to get people to eat your mailer.
- Hearing — Adding sound to your mail piece can be a bit costly, but depending on what you are selling, it may be just what you need. For instance, a casino that wants to drive more people to slot machines can send a mailer with the sound of coins dropping.
- Touch — This one is, by far, my favorite besides vision for direct mail. With our fingertips being the most sensitive to how things feel, adding special textures and coatings can really make your mail piece pop.
As you can see, the brain is powerful and is very good at ignoring messages. Taking the time to consider all of these psychological factors can really help you drive your response rates up. As always, focusing your messaging with targeted segments to really reach the right people with the right message will increase the success of your mail campaigns. Are you ready to get started?