Today, I wanted to discuss a recent direct mail project by Case Paper. It’s been top of mind for me, lately, as it just recently won a Neographics Best in Category (packaging) award, and further back this summer won an Award of Excellence from the Communicator Awards. Now, full disclosure: Renegade did work on this project extensively, and though we do like celebrating our achievements, I think this is more just a great way to look at a few qualities every direct mailer should have.
Onto the project itself. For its 75th Anniversary, Case Paper wanted to put together a show-stopping, paper-based project to look at their history. The result was a box, modeled after a record player, filled with a fun timeline, historical facts, and paper swag (like a water bottle holder, notebook, picture frame, and more). The (very) warm reception this project received from clients, friends, prospects, and so on, comes from quite a few things, but I wanted to touch on three main ones.
To Sell or Not to Sell (Hint)
The first great thing about this project is: it isn’t overtly salesly! It doesn’t include calls to reach out to learn more, it doesn’t promise that Case’s paper will improve a publication’s readership by 300%, it doesn’t sound like a car lot salesman trying to capitalize on you glancing in the direction of that shiny red sports car. Rather, it contains a timeline of Case’s interesting history—from their start in a building that was formerly a horse stable, to the time they had to work non-stop to meet unexpected demand for The Beatle’s printed tour assets. It also just includes interesting historical facts about paper. Put plainly, the content included is interesting and entertaining, and Case’s products and services are not front and center (their personality, however, is!).
Industrious About Industry
The second great quality of the piece is that it is relevant to the industry and shows an ideal example of how Case paper/board (their product) can be put to use effectively. Recipients can see this record box, look through it all, and be thoroughly entertained. After that, they can think about potential ways they could do something in this style. When they then need to source paper for the project, guess who will come to mind as a paper supplier that could help?
Personable, Purposeful, Perfect
Third, this project ties perfectly to Case’s personality and purpose. Case Paper has made a name for themselves as willing to go to great lengths to help their customer, and they’ve built their brand around over-the-top performance and scenarios to reinforce that. This project features crazy intricate design—the faux-record box also includes a textured, faux-record, and a paperboard faux record player arm—plus real, valuable tools for people to use (all based on paper). The aforementioned swag was all hypothetically useful for people, it wasn’t just branded business cards or sheets of paper.
There are plenty more elements that made this project successful; our blog post discussing the project can shed some additional light if you’re interested. Basically, though, Case created a direct mailer that highlights their product without being salesy, provides real value for the recipient, and perfectly embodies their brand’s purpose and spirit.
If you’d like to hear more about how this project came together or want to share any other great examples of direct mailers you’ve seen, let me know!