Don’t just mail, GROW with EDDM

EDDMMitchell Graphics is your no hassle, expert source for high performance Every Door Direct Mail. Our production facilities print thousands of EDDM pieces for our customers.

EDDM is a saturation mailing targeting every address within a specific carrier route or zip code.
Local EDDM Success Stories:
  • New propane dealer attracts customer base.
  • Golf and Ski Resort promotes summer events schedule.
  • Retail store announces relocation, offers Mother’s Day sale and pulls in new customers.
Benefits of Every Door Direct Mail
  • The current cost for postage on an EDDM campaign is 18.3 cents compared with approximately 30 cents for standard bulk and up to 50 cents for first class.
  • Send direct mail pieces without having to purchase a mailing list.
What Does Mitchell Graphics Provide?

We are a turn-key solutions provider for EDDM campaigns. The staff at Mitchell offer full service graphic design, giving customers the compelling look that demands a solid response, mail list selection assistance, addressing and postal intelligence.

Do-it-yourself doesn’t always add up to savings. Let Mitchell handle your next mail campaign from start to finish, while you focus on your business.

EDDM Mailer Size Requirements

Minimum Size: Must be at least 10.5 inches in length or 6.125 inches in height. Any smaller and the piece will not meet EDDM requirements.

Maximum Size: May not exceed 15 inches in length or 12 inches of height. Any larger and the piece will exceed EDDM requirements.

  • EDDM does not require a mailing list, every piece just says “Local Postal Customer.”

Not sure if your project meets EDDM standards?

Call our experts today for a no cost review or to request FREE samples!

To take advantage of this offer…

Call 800.583.9401 to speak with an Account Consultant or email us at mgi@mitchellgraphics.com.

Understanding the Basic Types of Bulk Mail Postal Discounts

When and why you should use Mitchell’s direct mail services:

UnderstandingBasicTypesofBulkMailUsually if you are going to mail 1,000 or more pieces, it is worth the investment to hire a direct mail house like Mitchell Graphics to sort and process your direct mail for you. If you go on your own you will need to get a mailing permit, buy mailing labels and stick the labels on your piece.

Understanding the basic types of bulk mail postal discounts:

Standard Presort

Standard presort letter rate will average between 27 – 32 cents per letter or postcard. Your postal rate mostly depends on the number of zip codes you are mailing and the number of zip codes you mail to. The piece will need to have a standard mailing indicia and be bar coded. The standard delivery time is 7 to 12 business days. You will also get no returns of undeliverable postcards. The minimum number of pieces the post office requires is 200.

First Class Presort

First Class Presort postage will average between 39 to 44 cents per piece. The delivery time is 5 to 7 business days. Once again, the amount of postage depends on the number of zip codes mailed to and the number of pieces mailed to each zip code. With first class presort you will get returns of the undeliverables.

Every Door Direct Mail (EDDM)

EDDM, as it is called, will give you the cheapest postage rates. Postage will run 18.3 cents per card. You also do not need a mailing list with EDDM. Read the related article on EDDM for the pros and cons of this type of mailing.

There are other types of discounts, but the above three are the most common for most small business marketing.

Call a Mitchell Graphics account manager today to take advantage of our mailing expertise. 800.583.9401.

10 Tips: Small Business Event Planning

10TipsSmallBusiness EventPlanning1. Decide upon your target audience.  The first step — before you do anything else — should be to clearly define who your target audience is. From this, all the other decisions will fall into place in terms of format, content, prices, location, etc.

2. Make a list of details — everything, including lighting and public transportation, to content and refreshments.  When you decide to have an event, everything matters. From program content and lighting to transportation and parking — everything counts. And your audience will attribute everything to you and your brand.  Making a list will ensure you don’t overlook things.

3. Have a clear business purpose.  Before you begin planning a successful event, be clear on why you are doing it in the first place, because every decision after that should support your main goal. Is it lead generation? Is it to create awareness of your company or a particular product?  Is it to develop customer loyalty? Or do you simply want to make money (which is okay too)?  Make sure the team is aware of the purpose.

4. Watch out for other industry events when scheduling.  Check the calendar. Make sure you don’t schedule your event on or too close to holidays or popular vacation times. It’s just as important to check for other events that your target attendees might be going to.

5. Create goals. Always start with strategy. Just like building any business, great events start with a strong, thoughtful and measurable strategy. Then make sure that you proceed in line with reaching these goals.

6. You’ll need a DETAILED marketing plan. Create a marketing plan for the event. The more organized you are, the more professional your event will be.

7. Define good reason(s) for people to show up.  What’s the draw for attendees? You need to define WHAT you’re doing at the event that will bring those target attendees in the door. For a consumer product it might be a party with entertainment and product demos and freebies. For a business crowd it might be educational content or an exciting, well-known expert speaker. Whatever it is, don’t lose the connection with why you want this particular audience clamoring to get in.

8. Delegate responsibilities.  No matter the size of your business, always try to delegate responsibilities. Having one person in charge of every detail typically doesn’t work out well. Whenever possible, let people take control of the areas they most enjoy. For example, let the foodie in your company handle the catering details. The more someone enjoys their responsibilities, the more likely they will carry them out with success.

9. Set expectations carefully – then deliver. Ensure that the audience has a great (not good) experience, and that you give them what they expected from attending.

10. Ask people what they think, and be ready for feedback–good or bad. Ask for critiques. If you’ve done half a decent job, you’ll get lots of kudos. Say thanks, but then ask for the critique and be ready for it.

Three Things to Consider for Your Postcard Marketing

Three Things to Consider for Your Postcard Marketing

3ThingsConsiderPostcardMarketingTHE MESSAGE

  • Your postcard should have one specific purpose that is valuable to the receiver.
  • Keep your message simple. Less really is more in this case. Your postcard should include one message.
  • Postcards can be used for many purposes, including: reminders, gift certificates, coupons, new product announcements, openings, discounts and even as tickets.
  • Remember postcards work best to generate leads (not close sales). Don’t try to explain everything, and be sure to include multiple ways to contact you.

THE LOOK

  • Postcards work well when they cleverly present their message in a unique way. Try to use striking images, graphics or perhaps print on a unique, textured card stock to stand out.
  • Make the most of both sides of the postcard. The non-address side should have the main message. It may help to think of the front as a poster. The address side should include your offer, contact information and other details.
  • Short, bold headlines work best. Avoid jumbled information so the content is easy to skim and read.
  • Keep in mind, oversized cards give you more space to include photos, coupons and even a map to your location.

THE ACTION

  • Postcards are great for timely messages, offers with a deadline, or renewal reminders.
  • Encourage quick action. Give customers a good reason to act now; perhaps include a fast action bonus with a deadline.
The team at Mitchell Graphics can help you design, print, and mail your company’s postcard. Reach out to one of our account managers today to discuss your postcard campaign.
Here is an example of our latest postcard with a special deal for you.
Call 800.583.9401 to speak with an Account Consultant or email us at mgi@mitchellgraphics.com.

TimeforSomethingBiggerTimeforSomethingBigger2

How to market with direct mail and email together

Working together is better. Some of the best marketing results come when direct mail is paired with email.

The challenge is figuring out how to combine email with direct mail effectively. Retailers can market with the two together by first direct mailing a quarterly catalog. Afterwards, they can email sale promotions and discounts for items in the catalog.

EmailMarketingComplimentHere are some other ways you can use direct mail and email together:
  •  Reinforce a Call to Action. Send a direct mail piece with tracking. When the customer receives the piece, have an email triggered that reinforces the Call to Action.
  • Expand your email subscriber list. Send direct mail to guide customers to a landing page. Use the landing page to collect their email address for your future campaigns.
  • Use direct mail to re-engage. Send a direct mail piece to re-engage a customer who is no longer opening your emails.
  • Reach shopping cart abandoners. Send a direct mail piece to a customer who has abandoned an online shopping cart. Offer them a special incentive for making a purchase either in-stores or online.

Direct mail and email shouldn’t be in competition with each other. When used together, they can ensure your message is delivered to your audience. After analyzing your marketing campaign’s performance, adjust as necessary. In other words, be sure to test, compare, test, compare, and test again!

Employee Spotlight

Ethan Schwarz

Folder Operator

EthanWhy did you decide to work at Mitchell Graphics?
I thought it would be a great place to start a career.

What is the favorite part of your day at Mitchell Graphics?
Walking in, in the morning and saying “hello” to everyone and donuts on Friday!

What do you enjoy doing outside of work?
Camping, fishing, hanging out with friends, and listening to music.

 


Gary Knudsen

Production Manager at our Traverse City location

GaryPicWhy did you decide to work at Mitchell Graphics?
Mitchell Graphics purchased Progress Printers in April of 2014. I was a 24 year employee so I guess you could say Mitchell Graphics picked me. Both being full service printing and graphics companies, the blending of capacities and capabilities offers more solutions to meet the occasional “seemingly impossible” deadlines. This concept makes working at Mitchell Graphics a welcome employment opportunity for me.

What is the favorite part of your day at Mitchell Graphics?
Besides clocking out to go home, the favorite part of my day is our group production meeting in the morning. Everyone goes through every job in production to decree any needing special attention. This process gets all employees on the same page to better function as a team. This works to everyone’s benefit and makes the communication side of my job more successful.

What do you enjoy doing outside of work?
In my spare time I enjoy hiking, kayaking and exploring new places. When my wife (and/or family) go on vacation, it’s almost a sure bet 1,000 miles will be added to our weeklong rental car’s odometer. Much of my time away from work is spent with my wife, family, friends and then there’s the golf course…

 

How to Develop A Marketing Plan for the New Year

Start your business New Year resolution with a marketing plan that outlines your business objectives and marketing strategies.

An annual marketing plan keeps businesses on track with goals. It ensures marketing opportunities and budgets are maximized.

1. Start You Annual Marketing Plan by Reviewing Your Previous Year’s Marketing Performance

MarketingPlanNewYearYou’ll want to take a close look at how you performed over the current year. What marketing strategies worked and what marketing strategies were a bust? Adjustments that incorporate past marketing lessons should be made each year.

Here are some questions to ask when evaluating the previous year’s marketing performance:

  • Did you achieve desired results from your marketing efforts (such as improved brand recognition, X number of leads generated or sales/revenue figures)?
  • Has your target market, audience or geographic area changed over the year?
  • Were you able to stay within a marketing budget at the end of the year?
  • What areas of your marketing budget do you need to cut costs in for the coming year?
  • What areas of your marketing budget do you want to invest more in for the coming year?
2. Get Organized

The first step in developing an annual marketing plan is getting organized. Make a list of all the marketing categories that are important for your business.

Typical categories in a marketing plan include:

  • Advertising (print and/or online)
  • Branding and Graphics (photography, video production, graphic development)
  • Collateral (sell sheets, brochures, business cards)
  • Events (trade shows, webinars)
  • Direct Marketing (email, direct mail, list generation, promotional incentives/contests)
  • Public Relations (press release distribution)
  • Research (focus groups, surveys, marketing references)
  • Social Media (social media networks)
  • Website (search engine optimization, web development/hosting)
3. Define Strategies, Tactics and Budgets

Once marketing categories are outlined for your business, strategies, tactics, and budgets should be defined per category.

Here is an example of defining a strategy and tactics for the “advertising” category:

Marketing Category: Advertising
Strategy #1 – Drive traffic to website via social media
Tactic # 1 – Pinterest Pins
Tactic #2 – Facebook Posts
Tactic #3 – Twitter Posts

Each tactic will also need to have a budget, if applicable. You should record your budgets and what was actually spent so you can make any adjustments needed throughout the year such as moving funds from one tactic to another if needed.

Flexibility to adapt to a changing business environment and being “opportunistic” in your marketing plan throughout the year is important.

A Guide to Using the Correct Social Media Logos

SocialMediaBrandingToday it’s standard practice for businesses to list their social networks (facebook, twitter, instagram, etc.) on their marketing materials. Did you know that each social network has guidelines for its logo? These guidelines include what logo version you should and should not be using, and the proper way to display it. This is called a Branding Guideline and almost every business has one. For example, Twitter is commonly misrepresented with the small ‘t’ square logo. The small ‘t’ logo is not the official Twitter logo and according to Twitter’s Branding Guidelines, it should not be used. Twitter is very specific (as all Branding Guidelines are).  Only the Twitter bird icon should be used when representing Twitter. It’s important to research the Branding Guidelines for logos included in your marketing material to make sure you are using them correctly. The proper use of logos is a contributor to making your marketing materials look current and up-to-date. Here is a list of links to the most commonly used social networks, and their Branding Guidelines:

facebook: https://www.facebookbrand.com/guidelines?asset=2&media=1,2,3
twitter: https://about.twitter.com/company/brand-assets
instagram: https://www.instagram-brand.com/
pinterest: https://business.pinterest.com/en-gb/brand-guidelines

#helpushelpyou

Tips to Creating Your Annual Report

You’ve spent weeks pouring over numbers and charts in order to create a review of your company’s performance over the past year with its shareholders. The numbers may speak for themselves but not everyone understands statistics and standard deviation.

AnnualReportsHow do you share your findings in a way most people will understand? How do you present your annual report so people want to pick it up and review it?

Here are some tips for you to consider when creating this year’s annual report:

1. Design for the Limited Attention Span
While many stakeholders want to know how your company did, they don’t have a lot of time. Use quality copy but not a lot of it. Avoid getting too technical and break it down into easy to consume content.

2. Represent Your Company’s Vision
Those invested in your company want to know where it is headed and how it will get there. Make sure to state your mission statement but also have the voice of the report share the vision of the company. Include possible struggles and how effective the company will be at overcoming them.

3. Identify Key Performance Indicators
Financial statements can be dull – most people will skim over them. Using charts and graphs presents them quickly and in a visual manner most people can understand.

4. Use Great Images
Imagery not only helps to bring life to a page but it shows the human aspect of your company. Include candid photos of employees working, eating lunch together, laughing, helping in the community. This helps to tell your company’s story.

The team at Mitchell Graphics can help you design and print your company’s annual report. Reach out to one of our account managers today to discuss your annual report production.

Call 800.583.9401 to speak with an Account Consultant or email us at mgi@mitchellgraphics.com.