Direct Mail

Direct Mail Piece Checklist and Tips

The mail piece is a key part of any direct mail campaign. Make sure your campaign gets off on the right foot by following this mail piece checklist and simple tips for a great mail piece.


Get all the details out before you even start designing the mail piece. Ensuring you have a clear direction from the start will save time in the long run. Consider these items during your planning phase.

  • Determine target audience (and choose a mailing list, if needed).
  • Define your message/product/offer.
  • Choose your call to action.
  • What is the tone?
  • Determine mail piece dimensions.
  • What is the cost of postage for your mail piece?
  • Choose a printer and mail house.
  • Determine mail piece drop dates.
  • Select a tracking method.

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It’s a good idea to have someone who isn’t part of the project team take a glance at your mail piece copy. Can they clearly understand the intent from the beginning? Here are some tips for effective mail piece copy.

  • Speak directly to the consumer. Use the word “you” and write in such a way they can see themselves using your product or service.
  • Create a sense of urgency.
  • Stick with one call to action, but list it multiple times.
  • Demonstrate how you solve a customer’s problem.
  • Avoid industry jargon.
  • Use all caps and bold text strategically, but not excessively.
  • Be honest. Avoid making unrealistic promises.

Final Quality Check

It’s a good idea to have someone outside of the design team perform a final quality check prior to sending your creative to the printer. Share this checklist with them to use as a guide for their final review.

  • Verify accuracy of:
    • Phone numbers
    • Dates
    • Venues/addresses
    • URLs
    • Email addresses
    • Mail piece dimensions
  • Check for:
    • Proper grammar/punctuation
    • Accurate spelling (including spelling of names)
    • Trademarks
    • Overall flow

Need recommendations for a great list provider designer, printer, or mail house? Email Patricia Thompson at

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