Create a One-Time Send Postcard

Go beyond digital marketing and send a printed postcard campaign that people can hold in their hands. Target any of your contacts around the world, or find a new audience of similar people.

In this article, you’ll learn how to create a one-time send postcard campaign, and how to use our postcard audience tools to reach more people.

Before You Start

Here are some things to know before you begin this process.

  • Make sure you’re familiar with how postcards work in Mailchimp, including pricing and delivery estimates. To learn the basics, check out About Postcards.
  • To receive a postcard, a contact's first name, last name, and mailing address must be correctly stored and formatted in your list. The first and last name list fields must be associated with the merge tags FNAME and LNAME, respectively. The address list field must be associated with the merge tag ADDRESS. To learn more about how to format mailing addresses for postcards, check out Verify or Format the Address Field.
  • For GDPR compliance, you'll want to create and send to segments that only include contacts who have consented to direct mail.
  • Postcards do not support merge tags at this time.
  • Security and nonprofit discounts do not apply to postcards at this time.

How it Works

image shows example of front and back of postcard

The one-time send postcard is designed to be the most flexible postcard campaign in Mailchimp. Use our audience tools to send your postcards around the world, even if you don't have any addresses yet. Add a unique promo code to generate and track purchases, and follow delivery progress in your campaign report.

Create Campaign

To create a one-time send postcard, follow these steps.

  1. Navigate to the Campaigns page.
  2. Click Create Campaign.
    click create campaign
  3. Click Postcard.
  4. Click One-time send.
    campaigns-postcards-frontdoor-onetimesend
  5. Enter a campaign name and click Begin.
    enter a campaign name and click begin

This will take you to the the postcard builder, where you’ll choose your budget and audience, add your content, and send.

Set Audience and Budget

You can send your postcard campaign to your contacts or a new audience of people who are similar to your contacts. The higher your budget, the more people you have the potential to reach.

Send to Your Contacts

You can send a postcard to any type of contact in your list, regardless of their email marketing status.

To send a postcard campaign to a list or segment of your contacts, follow these steps.

  1. In the To section of the postcard campaign builder, click Add Recipients.
    postcards-cb-addrecipients
  2. Click Existing contacts.
    postcard-to-existingcontacts
    If you have a free or Pay as You Go plan, you’ll have the option to toggle on address finder to try it out. If you have the monthly paid plan, address finder is enabled by default.
  3. Click the List drop-down menu to choose the list you want to work with.
  4. Click the Segment drop-down menu to refine your audience. This is set to target All contacts on your list by default, including unsubscribed and non-subscribed. If you want to target based on a specific set of conditions, you’ll need to create and save a segment ahead of time. The number of contacts in your chosen audience will display to the right of the drop-down.
  5. In the Budget field, enter the maximum amount you want to spend on this campaign.
    postcard-to-budget
    The more postcards you send, the less you’ll pay per unit. To see the different pricing tiers, click View postcard pricing. The amount you can spend on postcards is limited to $10,000 per day.
  6. Click Save.
    standard gray save button with cursor

After you save, we’ll scan your list for correctly formatted addresses. Then, we’ll show you the total number of postcards you can send and how much they’ll cost. If you enabled address finder, we’ll include the price of a monthly plan upgrade.

Send to a New Audience

When you choose to send to a new audience, we'll look for people who aren't on your list yet but share interests with your existing contacts.

To send postcards to a new audience, follow these steps.

  1. In the To section of the postcard campaign builder, click Add Recipients.
    postcards-cb-addrecipients
  2. Click New audience.
    postcard-to-newaudience
    Our new audience tool is only available with a monthly plan. If you’re a Forever Free or Pay As You Go user, you’ll see a Paid label and a reminder that you’ll be asked to upgrade to a monthly plan at checkout.
  3. Click the List drop-down menu to choose the list you want to work with. We'll find a new audience similar to the list's contacts.
  4. Click the Segment drop-down menu to refine your choice. By default, this is set to All contacts on your list, including unsubscribed and non-subscribed. If you want to target based on a specific set of conditions, you’ll need to create and save a segment ahead of time. The number of contacts in your chosen segment will display to the right of the drop-down.
  5. In the Location field, enter the city, state, country, or postal code where you want us to find similar people, and choose an option from the drop-down.
    postcards-cb-location
  6. In the Budget field, enter the maximum amount you want to spend on this campaign.
    postcard-to-budget-similarpeople
    The more postcards you send, the less you’ll pay per unit. To see the different pricing tiers, click View postcard pricing. The amount you can spend on postcards is limited to $10,000 per day.
  7. Click Save.
    standard gray save button with cursor

After you save, we’ll show you the number of recipients we found and display the total cost to send. If you’re on a free or Pay As You Go plan, we’ll include the price of a monthly plan upgrade.

Add Content

Choose a main image for the front of your postcard, and add a heading, body text, and optional brand logo to the back. You can also include a promo code from your online store. Content will appear on the preview as you add it.

To add content to your postcard, follow these steps.

  1. In the Content section of the postcard builder, click Add Content.
    click add content
  2. In the Front section, click Browse and choose an image from the Content Manager.
    click browse to choose main image for front of card
    This will be the Main image for your postcard. Here are some things to consider when you choose this image.
    • Postcards support JPEG and PNG file types only.
    • We recommend a minimum image size of 1875-by-1350px to ensure a high-quality print.
    • We’ll automatically convert your image to CMYK color.
    • Digital photos display darker in print. If your image is very dark, you may want to brighten it a little bit.
  3. In the Back section, enter a Heading and Body.
    enter heading and body
  4. Optional: To include a promo code from your connected online store, check the Include promo code box, then click the drop-down menus to choose a store and code. You’ll need to create the code in your store before you can add it to a postcard.
    choose a promo code
    We’ll track purchases made with this code and display the usage and revenue totals in your postcard report. For the most accurate results, we recommend you create an exclusive promo code for each postcard campaign.
  5. Optional: In the Logo section, click Browse to choose a JPEG or PNG image file from the Content Manager. This will appear on the bottom left of the back of your postcard.
  6. Click Save.
    standard gray save button with cursor

Nice job! Now that you’ve designed your postcard, you’ll want to preview it to make sure everything looks good and prints as expected.

Preview Postcard

When your campaign goes to the printer, they’ll trim the sides so that the design extends to the edges. Our postcard preview tool shows you exactly where they’ll cut, so you can make sure important details won’t be removed.

To preview your postcard, follow these steps.

  1. Click the preview for the Front or Back of your postcard.
    click preview image
  2. In the preview modal, toggle on the Show print guides slider.
    toggle on print guides
    You’ll see lines that mark the Safe area and Bleed area. Make sure to keep important details, like text, inside the dotted line.
  3. Review your postcard and click X in the upper-right corner to exit the modal.

Send Postcard

After you choose your audience, budget, and content, you’ll be able to send your postcard campaign.

To send your postcard campaign, follow these steps.

  1. When you’re ready, click Send Postcard.
    postcard-cb-statusbar-sendpostcard
  2. In the Prepare for launch modal, click Send Postcard to confirm.
    postcard-cb-confirmmodal-sendpostcard

Great job! Your campaign will display as Processing as we prepare to send your order to the printer. If you have the Mailchimp mobile app, we’ll send a push notification to your phone whenever the status changes.

image shows postcard campaign in processing status on campaigns page

View Report

To view your report, navigate to the Reports section of your Mailchimp account and click the name of your postcard campaign.

Here’s what you’ll find in your postcard campaign report.

  • Tracking tool
    Follows your campaign from order to delivery. The tracking stages are: Order placed, Sent to printer, Printing complete, Mailed, and Delivered. The Delivered status is currently limited to U.S. recipients.
  • Status
    Matches the tracking tool and includes a timestamp where possible. This will display as “Processing” while we review your order.
  • Audience
    Who you chose to receive your campaign.
  • Total Postcards
    The number of postcards you sent. If your audience includes recipients outside the U.S., we’ll also show you a breakdown of U.S. and international sends.
  • Promo code uses and revenue
    If your postcard includes a promo code from your connected store, we’ll show you the number of times it's been used, as well as the total revenue generated from those purchases.

Your report will also display the front and back of your finished postcard.


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