Taking Innovation to the MAXIs
One silver winner — Doolittle Raid 70th Anniversary from World War II Veterans Committee — included a USPS Priority Mail return envelope. Although USPS Priority envelopes are free from the post office, users still must apply a custom address label, and of course, there’s the postage, which can range from $5.60 to $6.95 for packages weighing less than a pound, and the BRE processing fee. Keep an eye on the use of Priority envelopes. If it fits your strategy, consider folding them before inserting to add extra heft to the package. In fact, folding any return envelope is a technique that I’ve seen used often to convey a look of hand insertion.
Getting attention in the mailbox starts with the envelope, but the diversity of formats in the Nonprofit Renewal Category proved that although a 9-inch by 12-inch envelope does get noticed, the traditional letter-size formats also can be formidable. Gold was awarded to the manila 9-inch by 12-inch Amnesty International USA Leadership Group dossier folder with full-size map, repositionable note, case studies, membership card and lift note with handwriting font. The Human Rights Campaign took silver with a standard No. 10 window outer envelope and three greeting cards with to/from stickers. The compelling insert within this format was the Holiday Buying for Workplace Equality Insert — simple four panels is a great example of a mission-focused keepsake sized perfectly for a wallet.
Bumpy mail gets the hail
Nonprofit Special Appeal gold went to Amnesty International USA for its USA Bracelet Appeal that included a plastic bracelet that looks like barbed wire. The case studies were compelling, but the bumpy bracelet helped the open rate immensely. Other highlights in this category include the opaque outer envelope and $1 bill insert technique used by the American Conservative Union. It’s been seen before but continues to win.