The Top Nine Rules When Mailing Postcards
By Scott Arpan
Postcards are the premier engine of many successful marketing programs. They put your message in from of the note
holder’s eyes. With postcards, you know the note holder will read your headline and see your image. That is half the
battle to get the prospect to call you.
Postcards have been used for decades and can work very for notes if a few rules are followed.
1. Start with your headline
The headline is that sentence you put in bold type to get the note holder’s interest. A good headline has an offer motivating
people to respond. Your headline is your main idea and reason for the note seller to call. IT MUST STICK OUT IN A
WAY THAT WILL GET NOTICED! Think of the number one reason the note holder should call you and that is a good
start to your headline.
2. Choose the right picture or image
The picture will be the first thing seen by the note holder. A good picture or image will draw curiosity and gain their
interest, inviting them to read your headline. Many different pictures can work as long as they 1) catch the note holder’s
eye; 2) goes along the same theme of your headline and 3) relates to the note holder in terms of what they want. The most
effective postcards I have seen have a large image on one side and the broker’s picture (small 1’x1’) on the address side.
Postcards with your small picture in the corner will outdraw cards without these pictures.
3. Use a strong but realistic call to action
The call to action tells the note holder what they need to do next in to take action. It is important to be clear, simple, and
realistic in your instructions. Give people an easy way to respond without jumping through extra steps. Give them toll-free
number to call, or a simple web address to type.
4. Sell the note seller on taking action NOW
How often have you procrastinated and forgot about doing something? Don’t allow the seller to put off calling or going to
your website NOW. Request the caller take action to contact you while the card is in their hands or you risk being
5. Revisit and Revise your Headline
Headlines have three seconds to appeal to the note seller. Run your headline by friends and colleagues to see if your
headline would attract them. Does the headline make them interested in your offer? Will they read your message based on
6. Don’t clog your postcard with words
Postcards allow only a limited space for you to give your message. You are better off staying with one major idea and
giving all your efforts to it rather then jumping from idea to idea and confusing your readers with many undeveloped ideas.
Note sellers will only sell their note because they need cash or to get rid a problem. Don’t stray from your primary
message. Use your website to fully explain all of the benefits you give the note seller.
7. Clarify your message
Don’t assume that note holders will understand what you can do for them. Be crystal clear on:
1) what you can do for the note holder, 2) what they must do to contact you, 3) when must they take action. If your
message can’t tell the note seller all three of these things, they will not respond.
8. Explain the note holder’s reward for contacting you
In order for the note holder to have an incentive to act now, you need to reward them for there efforts. What do they gain
from their? A free, no obligation quote should be near the top of the list. An opportunity to turn their note into cash is
9. Test, Test, Test
Another great benefit of postcards is they are cheaper then other mailing products. Marketing is an ever evolving process
that can be improved on. With postcards you can test different messages and images cheaply. Professional marketers will
send out two versions of cards with similar messages and images to see what one works best. They re-mail the better
performer and test it against another idea and keep the best one.
© Scott Arpan
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