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The Comprehensive Guide to Direct Mail Postcards & Marketing

March 15, 2020

There are three typical approaches to implementing any marketing postcards campaign from start to finish: gearing up to tackle each component all on your own, outsourcing specific components of the campaign, or outsourcing the campaign in its entirety. With a plethora of factors to consider, knowing which route to take can be overwhelming. To help you decide which option is right for you, here is a complete guide to all of the important things to consider as you’re planning a direct mail postcards campaign: the budget, mailing logistics, design components, and your mailing list.


Budgeting for a direct mail postcards campaign depends on a wide variety of components such as design specifics, mailing logistics and recipient quantity. While thinking about budgeting can feel like a headache, it’s necessary for the success of your campaign, as well as your bank account. Don’t worry — we’ll walk you through it!

To begin building your budget, start by calculating your fixed costs. Fixed costs are the services or goods which have prices that remain constant. In this case, fixed costs include anything you plan to outsource, such as creative services for the design of your postcard and project management costs such as fixed labor and vendor pricing. Next, consider needs that can vary in cost. Variable costs include everything from postage to printing, and depend strongly on the quantity of recipients on your mailing list. Once you nail down your fixed costs, and have a dollar range you expect to pay for your variable costs, you can begin to budget with accuracy.

Logistics (Timing and Postage)

Timing is key, particularly if your direct mail marketing campaign has a time-sensitive call to action, such as an incentive with a time frame or a discount code. If you have some extra time on your hands, there’s always the option of printing, addressing, stamping and mailing your own postcards. However, if you’re less time-abundant, or just don’t want to deal with the hassle, your postcards can hit the mail stream as early as the next business day through a professional direct mail business. If your priority is timeliness, it may be in your campaign’s best interest to let the professionals take the logistics of postage and mailing off of your plate.

Design Basics

Design is crucial to the overall success of your campaign. In this section, we’ll talk first about “design” in terms of the tangibles you should consider when it comes to the look and feel of your card — paper weight, etc — but if you want a deeper dive into tips centered around the graphics and visuals of your postcard, we’ve got you covered there, too: just check out our blog for more.

So, what to consider when it comes to the tangibles of a postcard’s design? First, it’s time to make a decision about the size of your postcard. While standard-sized postcards are a safe bet given direct mail’s high response rate, , you can up the ante even more by sending an oversized postcard.

The type of paper you select for your postcards is also an important design detail, as well. You’ll want to be sure to select a sturdy version of paper type, which can be determined by comparing each paper type’s accompanying numbers — the higher the number, the thicker the paper. Adding UV coating to your postcards can also help ensure that your design survives potential weather complications. Take advantage of QuantumPostcards’ UV coating options to maximize water resistance and protection from scratches, tears and fingerprints.

Last but certainly not least, invest into your design — the actual graphics and visuals. If you find design to be a challenging component, you’re far from alone. However, 42.2% of direct mail recipients either read or scan the mail they get, so it’s important that your presentation is eye-catching. Create an appealing design that differentiates your mail piece from others by adding color, texture and dimension.


Making sure your marketing postcards are being sent to the right audience can be intimidating depending on the availability of a valuable mail list. If you already have a targeted mailing list at your disposal, great! You can provide your list to a mailing supplier who will reach those individuals directly; just be sure that your selected printer has an address validation system in place and that your current list is as up-to-date as possible.

However, if you don’t presently have a mailing list and don’t have the time to build one from scratch through lead generation, the easiest option is to purchase a targeted mailing list from a direct mail postcard business. Particularly if you’re looking to target a brand-new audience, it’s smart to tap into targeted mailing lists for consumers, businesses, new movers, or new homeowners. QuantumPostcards offers lists for all of these categories that are updated monthly.

In Conclusion

At the end of the day, only you can be the judge of which campaign components to outsource for your next direct mail postcards l campaign. If you aren’t certain, QuantumPostcards has experienced team members who can walk you through the process — from offering design templates and targeted mailing lists, to one-stop printing, postage and mailing services. We wish you the best of luck with your next campaign!