• AMi Direct

AMiable Solution #372: What Your Paper Choice Says About You



Just as your company’s physical appearance makes an impression on prospects and clients, so does your paper choice when it comes to direct mail.

In a world where every step you make and every post you publish has the potential to come under scrutiny, how can you make a good impression in print? Does your choice in paper stock really matter when it comes to your print marketing?

Yes, it does. While your focus may primarily be on the cost and its impact on your overall campaign budget, prospects and clients see your paper differently:


· Heavy, high-quality paper says your product is high-end and/or your quality is top-notch.


· Recycled paper says your company is environmentally conscious.


· Lightweight paper that feels flimsy and has—eeek!—bleed-through says you’re more worried about saving money than winning customers.


So what’s a direct mailer to do?

If you’re mailing a letter or form: Most letters don’t contain many, if any, photos or images. That takes some of the pressure off. Your letter paper should feel like quality stuff, but you don’t have to break the bank to achieve that result. While 70# stock is probably ideal, you can reduce costs without hurting your value by using 60# stock.

If you’re mailing a postcard: Unlike envelopes, which were meant to take a little bit of a beating while still protecting the valuable contents inside, postcards need to be durable enough to withstand the rough-and-tumble of mail processing and delivery but still be “pretty” enough for presentation. A 14-point cover stock is a good starting point.

If you’re mailing a brochure: Don’t go with anything lighter than a 70 lb. matte text or an 80 lb. uncoated text. Both will give your brochures a quality feel without breaking your budget. Thicker, 100 lb. gloss text or 100 lb. gloss cover will provide thicker, sturdier materials that allow printed images to really shine while still being foldable.

Of course, you never have to make these types of decisions blindly. Your mail service provider and printer will happily provide you with samples and tips for making your best decision.

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