The magic starts from the moment they open the mail. And it lasts until… well, even months into the future.
That’s the power of creative dimensional mail — if done right. But here’s what “done right” looks like from start to finish:
It opens with an unforgettable first impression
The mail we receive on a regular basis doesn’t tend to inspire much excitement, right? That’s why we put such a premium on making that first impression unique — to capture attention and invite engagement.
Unsurprisingly, studies back this up: Direct mail is praised for delivering open rates as high as 90%. And under this direct mail umbrella, dimensional leads the first-impression pack; when people receive something that immediately appears out of the ordinary, they can’t help but indulge their curiosity.
For instance, here at Structural Graphics, we partnered with global luxury brand agency Hudson Rouge, in collaboration with Maker House, to create a sleek foil-stamped package containing a hardcover welcome book for new Lincoln vehicles. To truly capture the Lincoln brand and wow the viewer, the books outer edge lit up in LED lights when opened — mimicking their cars lighting up when unlocked. Best yet, when the book is removed, thin speakers in the box automatically play a custom composition by the Detroit Symphony Orchestra.
Now, have you ever seen anything like that before? We’ll bet that those Lincoln customers hadn’t, and we’ll bet they weren’t quick to forget it.
Once they’re hooked, it’s all about engagement and response
The Lincoln book’s elegant, lit-up appearance may have been the invitation, but the music inside was the real party. So once they’re in, you want to continue cultivating an experience for the recipient. And the best experience is one that they participate in; dimensional mail’s greatest strength is that it’s not a one-way street.
For starters, people appreciate that direct mail lets them engage on their own time, at their own pace. One study found that direct mail remains in homes for 17 days on average. And in that 17 days, your mailer is much more likely to make an impression than any email; print ads can have recall rates 30% higher than digital.
But we’re not just talking about any print ads. We’re talking about the most innovative designs, sent straight to the reader’s door. Get this: Average direct mail’s response rate of 4.4% easily trumps email’s 0.12%… But dimensional mail makes both look like child’s play, with a staggering 8.5% response rate of its own!
Point being: There’s no better tool for engaging your audience. And no tool is as safe a bet for high ROI.
And we’re not done yet: Dimensional mail has unmatched shelf life
People throw out mail. If you’re lucky, they skim through it and then toss it. What else would they do?
Well, if you give them a rare reason to keep it, they just might. Take this self-standing popper we made for Uniti. This nifty piece of dimensional mail shares a message promoting community education. And with its eye-catching diorama and light scheme, it’s quite easy to leave standing on one’s desk for long-lasting impact.
Or how about something that offers long-term value without a self-standing setup. Here’s a recruitment brochure we made for UC Riverside to share vital enrollment information. With pop-up graphics and fold-out panels containing useful resources, UC Riverside gave students every reason to keep the card for future reference and even share it with other friends applying to college.
And that’s yet another feather in dimensional mail’s cap! It creates an experience that’s not only memorable (and in some cases long-lasting), but it also begs to be shared.
Which brings us full circle: Dimensional mail “done right” is a branding home run — from the first impression, through the experience of the mailer, and into its next life as a desktop ornament.