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Your 2013 DM Brief

Every great campaign starts with a brief

You want to squeeze as much as you can out of your 2013 marketing budget and get the best possible results, right? Well, before you spend a penny, spend some time and thought on the Campaign Brief first. Not only will a great brief save you time in the long run, it will save you money and dramatically improve your response rates.

A Direct Mail Campaign Brief covers 13 areas. It might sound like a lot, but it's not (it's just two pages!). To give you a head start, we've developed a free Campaign Brief template for you to use on your next direct mailing. So go ahead and download it, and use it again and again.

Couple of Hints: Keep it brief! Don't let it run to more than 2 pages. Avoid using jargon. Make your brief engaging to read. Spend time on the creative proposition to make sure it's specific and unique - it's the first thing the creative team will look at. And include some testing to keep your response rates going up throughout 2013.

Example of a Direct Mail Campaign Brief

Below you'll find the brief we wrote for our own campaign 'Open your mind'. This campaign attracted a phenomenal result, as well as picking up some national and international awards along the way.

Direct Mail Campaign Brief
BACKGROUND/OVERVIEW (what are we doing and why?)

It’s imperative that businesses talk to their customers. But they’re either unaware that Direct Mail is the most effective form of communication to retain and acquire new customers or they’re unwillingly to try it. They insist on using more expensive TV, radio and press advertising, which are harder to target and measure.

The challenge is to create awareness that receiving Direct Mail could be simple, cost effective, targeted, measured and enjoyable amongst a time-poor audience that receive lots of messages through the post.

REQUIREMENTS (what do we want to produce at the end of this?)
An integrated campaign with Direct Mail AND Online
OBJECTIVES (what do we want to achieve? what's our success measured on?)
  • To demonstrate the power of a simple piece of tangible, interactive Direct Mail
  • To show how Direct Mail can encourage interaction and involvement above and beyond that of the traditional advertising media (TV, press & radio)
  • To show how a highly personalised piece of Direct Mail and a customized URL can successfully drive a target audience to an interactive website and keep them engaged for the duration of the message
  • To get 10% of recipients to engage with our message online.
TARGET AUDIENCE (who are we talking to?)

Marketing managers and SME business owners. We know from research that this audience is cynical and would not be easily convinced as to the power of Direct Mail, particularly above the more traditional ATL channels.

PRODUCT/SERVICE (what are we trying to sell or talk about?)

Direct Mail is one of the most effective and profitable ways to reach out to new and existing clients. Unlike other forms of advertising, Direct Mail lets you communicate one-on-one with your target audience.

OFFER (how are we going to entice the recipient to respond?)
We want to provide an engaging, surprising experience; something unexpected. And then follow-through with best-in-class direct marketing content available to marketers on
CREATIVE PROPOSITION (what's the single most important thing we want to say?)

Open your mind to the power of Direct Mail

BENEFITS (why should our target market believe us?)
  • The most successful businesses in Ireland are using Direct Mail. 72% of business that significantly increased their revenues over the past 12 months use Direct Mail
  • People like to receive Direct Mail 61% of Irish adults enjoy reading catalogues and other addressed direct mail
  • 18-25yrs like Direct Mail Three-quarters of 18-25 year olds say it’s a pleasure to receive mail and are more disappointed when there’s nothing there for them than general population!
  • Direct Mail is the most effective BTL channel in Ireland Direct Mail is the most read, liked, relevant and trusted BTL channel in Ireland today. It's also the most effective at building loyalty and, importantly, getting people to buy.
  • Direct Mail and Online are a marketer’s dream combination for targeted, measurable spend with modest upfront investment.
DESIRED RESPONSE (what do we want our target market to do?)
  • Think: 'You have absolutely made me revaluate my thoughts on direct mail'
  • Do: Get in touch with their An Post Account Manager or log onto the Mail Media Unit website
TONE / IMAGERY (how do you think this should look & feel?)
  • Innovative - surprise our target market! Not limited to traditional formats, use the physical, tangible nature of direct mail to the extreme.
MANDATORIES (what must appear in the campaign?)
TESTING (what can we learn from this to improve response rates?)
Test the position of the personalised name within the Personalised URL to see which gets the higher click-through. For example, test versus

The result...