What color would most get your attention in direct mail?

18 replies
We all know that copy is what gets a direct mail piece to win sales most of the time. But let's assume the copy was already good because it was written by someone like Gary Halbert or John Carlton etc.

In your opinion if you were to receive a postcard, a letter or self mailer in the mail based on the color alone what color would stick out to you the most where you would be like Hey what's this?

The reason i ask is because I'm studying not only copywriting but what colors go best with postcards and letters etc.

I've read several articles that state Red gets most people to turn a direct mail piece around and take action immediately.

I also read the other day about how when you mix a yellow postcard with red type it can really make the message jump off the page.


So in your opinion what colors get your attention and make a direct mail piece stand out?
#attention #color #direct #mail
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  • Profile picture of the author kenmichaels
    Originally Posted by Fitnessfreak158 View Post

    We all know that copy is what gets a direct mail piece to win sales most of the time. But let's assume the copy was already good because it was written by someone like Gary Halbert or John Carlton etc.

    In your opinion if you were to receive a postcard, a letter or self mailer in the mail based on the color alone what color would stick out to you the most where you would be like Hey what's this?

    The reason i ask is because I'm studying not only copywriting but what colors go best with postcards and letters etc.

    I've read several articles that state Red gets most people to turn a direct mail piece around and take action immediately.

    I also read the other day about how when you mix a yellow postcard with red type it can really make the message jump off the page.


    So in your opinion what colors get your attention and make a direct mail piece stand out?
    I find that neon yellow/ green works better then red...by a large margin.




    BTW; despite what a bunch of wannabie gurus will sell you, the colors catch and maintain the attention,
    the content gets the action.
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  • Profile picture of the author SARubin
    I suppose any bright, fun, or out of the ordinary color will attract attention.
    In a mail box full of black and white, any color is exciting.

    But whether or not I'd use it depends on what we're selling.

    If it's something that lends itself to uplifting frivolity (entertainment, fashion, art) then bright fun colors can help make the sale

    But if it's something serious like life insurance or financial advice, bright colors may attract attention, but they'll also attract disdain or contempt.
    (Not many people will trust life changing financial decisions to krusty the clown).

    It also depends on the context of what we're selling.
    Red could mean excitement, or danger. Yellow could mean sunshine, or caution, Brown could mean trustworthy, or poop.

    So what are we selling. Who are we selling it to. And what emotion are we hoping to bring out with the color.
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  • Profile picture of the author WF- Enzo
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    It depends on your brand design. There's no singular colour that will "attract" attention, as long as the colours blend and match with each other.
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  • Profile picture of the author dabbu347
    Any color that's suits and is sober for eyes.
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  • Profile picture of the author GordonJ
    Pink.

    Then: Sanguine, crimson, scarlet, ruddy rose, florid ruby, fuchsia, cherry, cinnabar, madden, cerise, carmine, maroon, or carnation.

    Any of the above will get attention.

    GordonJ

    PS Or Magenta.



    Originally Posted by Fitnessfreak158 View Post


    In your opinion if you were to receive a postcard, a letter or self mailer in the mail based on the color alone what color would stick out to you the most where you would be like Hey what's this?

    So in your opinion what colors get your attention and make a direct mail piece stand out?
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    • Profile picture of the author SARubin
      Originally Posted by GordonJ View Post

      Pink.

      Then: Sanguine, crimson, scarlet, ruddy rose, florid ruby, fuchsia, cherry, cinnabar, madden, cerise, carmine, maroon, or carnation.

      Any of the above will get attention.

      GordonJ

      PS Or Magenta.
      Thank you for this post Gordon, I needed a good chuckle... and you delivered.

      I was thinking the best color is either Red, Blue, or Yellow. And the second best would be a combination, or a blending of any of those three.
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      • Profile picture of the author Jonathan 2.0
        Originally Posted by SARubin View Post

        I was thinking the best color is either Red, Blue, or Yellow. And the second best would be a combination, or a blending of any of those three.
        I read that pale yellow and light grey help to build trust.
        : )
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        • Profile picture of the author SARubin
          Originally Posted by Jonathan 2.0 View Post

          I read that pale yellow and light grey help to build trust.
          : )
          Yeah Jonathan, I suppose they might. But again, it really depends on the situation, the audience, and even the tone and hue of color.

          A few years ago I spent some time in the study of color psychology (not a career move, but I'm always interested in what makes people react to different stimuli)

          From what I remember about grey and yellow...

          Grey can have a calming effect on many people. It's also known as "cold" color on the spectrum.
          As a neutral color it can help to build trust, but it can also leave right brained (creative) people feeling a little bored and put-off.

          Yellow is a warm color, but it's also one of the more stressful colors depending on the hue.


          I saw a study a while back where a group of people left in a bright yellow room became aggressive over simple disagreements. But when they were moved to a green room they began to calm down.

          I thought it was a pretty interesting experiment.

          I guess that's why many talk shows have a green room where the guests can wait for their turn. That way they remain calmer just before going on TV?


          But as for my color choices above... it was really meant "tongue in cheek".

          Red, Blue and Yellow are the 3 primary colors in the physical world (yellow gets replaced by green on backlit digital screens) So that's why those were my top 3 choices.
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          • Profile picture of the author Jonathan 2.0
            Interesting post/info: Thanks SARubin.

            From what I have observed, it seems like a pale yellow Subscription Box is very popular and (I assume) is working. I suppose it's all about testing though.
            : )
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  • Profile picture of the author max5ty
    Like someone said above, focus on the message.

    Color depends on who you're wanting to attract... Man, woman, old geezer, young whippersnapper, animal lover, beer drinker, doctor, alligator wrestler, pimp...

    So many variables.

    Also depends on geographical area. What color are eviction notices? Utility shut-offs? Parking tickets?

    When it comes to letters... The outside message is the most important. You don't want it to scream "hey I've got some crap I'm selling", it will just get trashed and you will go broke and end up living in a car in Walmarts parking lot.

    Focus on your message. Focus on your message.

    A good message written on toilet paper will get more results than a fancy-schmancy do-hickey thingy that has a sucky message.
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    • Profile picture of the author GordonJ
      Thanks Max5ty,

      This makes me mad.

      I mean, really...isn't this like, super BASIC stuff? Just my opinion, but people who ask these kinds of questions, shouldn't be in this business. Testing colors comes long, long after something which works has been proven. THEN you go for increases.

      Message first???????????????????

      Sheesh, what about font, size, shape, indicia, type of paper, day of the week, what hour of the day....

      Surely Max5ty, there are 101 things more important than the message.

      I mean, the message is only important if they want to actually sell something...but let us focus on the really important stuff, like blue ink or black signature?

      GordonJ

      Originally Posted by max5ty View Post

      Like someone said above, focus on message.

      Color depends on who you're wanting to attract... Man, woman, old geezer, young whippersnapper, animal lover, beer drinker, doctor, alligator wrestler, pimp...

      So many variables.

      Also depends on geographical area. What color are eviction notices? Utility shut offs? Parking tickets?

      When it comes to letters... The outside message is the most important. You don't want it to scream "hey I've got some crap I'm selling", it will just get trashed and you will go broke and end up living in car in Walmarts parking lot.

      Focus on your message. Focus on your message.

      A good message written on toilet paper will get more results than a fancy schmancy do hickey thingy that has a sucky message.
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      • Profile picture of the author Jonathan 2.0
        Similar to what max5ty and GordonJ said:

        It's all about the Message. A lesson I learned from Gary Halbert is ... Would it matter the font style, pictures, and background colour (etc. etc.) if the message was ... "Your Wife has just given birth to Triplets!" Is there any way you could communicate that without the Person being thrilled?? It could be written on a Post It Note, yet it will be an amazing message.

        Although the design is important, it's usually just to make the content/message more appealing. That's not saying you shouldn't consider it -- just that it's not the most important aspect.

        That's my 2C anyway.
        : )
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    • Profile picture of the author kenmichaels
      Originally Posted by max5ty View Post

      Like someone said above, focus on message.

      Color depends on who you're wanting to attract.. Man, woman, old geezer, young whippersnapper, animal lover, beer drinker, doctor, alligator wrestler, pimp...

      So many variables.

      Also depends on geographical area. What color are eviction notices? Utility shut offs? Parking tickets?

      When it comes to letters... The outside message is the most important. You don't want it to scream "hey I've got some crap I'm selling", it will just get trashed and you will go broke and end up living in car in Walmarts parking lot.

      Focus on your message. Focus on your message.

      A good message written on toilet paper will get more results than a fancy schmancy do hickey thingy that has a sucky message.


      Banana and neon yellow are the same color as vehicle recall notices.
      ...And those recall notices are typically 4" x 6" and 4" x 4"


      Anyone who has ever bought a new vehicle knows what they look like.

      Anyone who bought a car in the last year or so will absolutely look
      (at least for a moment) at that color card.

      A small blurb with a black font is usually read in its entirety before
      they even relize they read it...and before they understand the content.
      - Which IS the secret sauce gurus dont bother telling you about.

      Use emphasis and italics to highlight the call to action.

      If you use a header on the card, make sure the phone number is equal
      to or a larger type set.


      Hey google, "How many US car recalls a year?"

      In both 2017 and 2018, the number of vehicles affected by safety recalls stabilized between 25 and 30 million annually, as compared to 2014 through 2016 when the number of vehicles affected was between 48 and 49 million.
      Trying to recreate the wheel or perfect percentages, is all fine and good when you have the time, money, and resources. I posted the above info to show you there is a faster way. People selling car insurance, parts, detailing, washes, windshield repair...and on and on and on will get monster returns using a little bit of technique and riding someone else's (car dealerships) coattails.

      A million years ago I created an ISP service out of thin air by riding AOL'S coat tails.
      Everyone who got that free AOL disk and then the CDs....also got my postcards offering
      my service highlighting AOL pain points and that I had a better price.

      I've spent more money in advertising over the years than I am comfortable admitting and
      each and every medium had its own expensive learning curve and disseminated misinformation.

      It's just so much easier to cherry-pick a successful campaign and then figure out how to tweak the
      method to work for you.
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  • Profile picture of the author IICT Technologies
    Any Colour my preference is always goes with blue colour..
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  • Profile picture of the author chopwersoo78
    According to my opinion, the Yellow one gives a more attractive look because it starts attracting everyone from miles. It is not said by me but by my friends. By the way, I like burgundy color and for my Email purpose flooring cost calculator canada
    I am using wooden color with some chocolaty effect. You can also use this as a trial.
    After that change it according to your choice. While talking about choices (edit by mod - please read forum rules)
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  • Profile picture of the author seoexpertinindia
    Colors will catch more attention than black and white...
    YELLOW is a cheerful warm color, it makes you happy. It represents confidence , creativity and promptness and promotes a sense of urgency that can cause spontaneous buyer to act on your offer.
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  • According to the study, some colors are used for a definite type of buyer: red, orange, black, and royal blue for impulse shoppers. Navy blue and teal for shoppers on a budget. Pink, rose, and sky blue for traditional buyers. Hope this will helps.
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  • Profile picture of the author ewenmack
    The missing pieces are personalization and timing.

    They come from your your data research before you write
    and design your mailer.

    I'll write a demo piece off the top of my head
    so you can see what a difference this makes.

    "Hi Ken,

    I notice what appears you have a 2016 Ford F-150

    The reason I bring this up is that I'm low on these,
    therefore are willing to pay top dollar for yours.

    Should you wish to consider how much I'll pay you
    you might like to have the 2021 f-150 edition for the weekend...
    I'm sure you'll have a blast in it.

    I'm at my office on 1338 Cross Avenue Fort Worth
    just opposite MacDonald's.

    If you are short on time, call me, Barry
    817 277 222
    I'm in the office Tuesday to Friday 9 to 6
    Saturday 9 to 5
    Fred Flinstone Ford

    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Ok here's what's going on...
    1 Got a list of Ford truck owners in a 15 mile radius of the dealership
    2 The records are of owners that have a history of buying new
    3 Use a printer that does variable data printing so that the postcard inserts persons first name on it
    and it will put the recipients Google Street view on the postcard.

    All these, name, what they own and pic of their home
    tells the reader it's only for him and nobody else.

    Not only that I filtered the records for the age of vehicle when they trade in.
    This means you timed your one to one message so you aren't wasting your
    ad dollars on those who aren't ready and those that never will buy.

    Due to data, spreadsheets and variable printers, you can do this type
    of one to one personalization
    at scale.

    Best,
    Ewen
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