Direct mail response rates are at their highest ever reported by the DMA (Data & Marketing Association) at a whopping 5.1% since 2003. At that same token, consumers are spending around an average of 1 minute or more on one direct mail piece. How are your direct mail pieces making the most of that time? I recently attended a direct mail marketing seminar that discussed several elements that must occur once a consumer reads your DM to get desired results. These are called the 5 R’s of Direct Mail.  The original purpose of the 5 R’s was related to direct marketing, but the first three R’s can be applied to a corporate event planner’s invitations or other direct mail pieces.

Number 1: Relevance

Who is your target audience?

This will be the foundation for the success of your direct mail campaign. It’s important for corporate meeting planners and incentive travel managers to infer what entices their target audience enough to interact with a direct mail piece.

Will it make their keeper pile?

Often for corporate event planners, the goal of a direct mail campaign is to remind the audience of their event and make it a firm date on their calendar. The piece must set itself apart from the usual junk mail that clogs your inbox and find itself in the ‘keeper pile’ to open and read, and maybe even hold on to so they can refer to it later.

Know your audience for meeting planner direct mail campaigns

Number 2: Read

Do they want to find out more?Attention Sticker for Meeting Planner Direct Mail

In an ideal world, our direct mail would have all the information one could possibly hope to find. However, they only make so much room on the letterhead or notecard for the vital information. Make sure your content is enticing enough for the reader to want to find out more about what you’re directing their attention to, and always give them a call-to-action to find out more about it. This generally will be in the form of an event or incentive trip website’s short URL.

Is your DM piece attention grabbing?

We’ve all rifled through junk mail to see if there’s anything important not to throw away immediately. Imagine throwing out an info sheet on your incentive travel reservations just because it looked like every other envelope? Adding a logo or design related to the event can catch the eye of someone who has been expecting some information on it.

Number 3: Response

Will they call you?

Again, this harkens back to what will a typical recipient do when they receive your direct mail piece. Will they want to know more? Do you have an easy-to-follow message and call-to-action?

Did you present an offer they can’t refuse?

It’s always nice to have the words ‘mandatory’ or ‘compulsory’ accompanying a piece from the powers that be to make the piece a must-read, but we won’t always have that luxury. Grab their attention and demand a response by giving them a good enough reason to interact.


So when you’re working on your next campaign, take a look at your DM piece. Does it cover all of these elements?

Feel free to take a look at our Events page to learn more about how Brightspot can help you take the creativity and reliability of your corporate meetings to the next level.

Phoebe Wright

Author Phoebe Wright

Program Manager | Expertise is detailed attention in program execution and corporate communication.

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