A Guide for Making Your Brand Stand Out with Postcard Marketing

Go beyond your digital channels to reach people through the mail—no physical addresses needed.

Alligator with postcard floating over it

Mailchimp postcards put a modern twist on direct mail marketing, giving you the power to use what you’ve learned about your audience through digital channels to reach your customers through the mail. Think of it as email for mailboxes.

What is postcard marketing?

Postcard marketing, a form of direct mail, helps you reach a targeted audience with promotional print pieces like coupons, announcements, and other offers. While the tactic might seem a little old school in the age of email and social media, a lot of fast-growing brands are starting to add direct mail marketing to their modern marketing strategy.

It turns out that about 86% of consumers take the time to read through their mail, which gives you the chance to make your brand stand out with a piece of print marketing your customers can hold on to. And people don’t just ignore or throw out postcards from businesses, as you might think. In fact, direct mail marketing brings in 10% more new customers than email.

But direct mail marketing of today doesn’t look like it used to. Now you can use audience data from your digital channels to send postcards that are relevant to your customers. Plus, it’s easy to combine them with your other marketing so you can reach your people in lots of different places.

How can Mailchimp postcards help your brand stand out?

Mailchimp's low-cost postcards are easy to design and send to people in 27 countries around the world. You can use the digital assets from your other marketing to keep your branding consistent, and send to segments of your audience to keep your message focused and budget manageable.

To help eliminate some of the repetitive tasks you have on your plate, Mailchimp has automated postcard campaigns:

  • Recurring postcards that send at regular intervals
  • Abandoned cart postcards that send when someone leaves an item in their shopping cart for 24 hours

What sets Mailchimp postcards apart are its address finder and lookalike audience finder tools that help small businesses send campaigns to existing and potential customers.

Follow up with customers, automatically

Recurring postcards help you reach your chosen audience at regular intervals—every month, 3 months, or 6 months—so you can keep your brand top of mind and remind people of ongoing promotions or events.

Give shoppers an extra nudge to finish checking out

Bring shoppers back to your store with an abandoned cart postcard. We’ll automatically send your campaign to the printer if a customer leaves something in their shopping cart for 24 hours. This gives people time to get back to your store on their own, or with the help of an abandoned cart email.

Don’t have addresses? We’ll help find them for you

When you choose to send a postcard to people on your list, address finder looks for contacts with missing mailing addresses and tries to match them with one of the millions of postal addresses that power our audience data tools. While address finder is a paid feature, free users can try it out to see how many addresses we’re able to find.

Find new people who look like your biggest fans

Our lookalike audience finder helps you reach new people with postcards. Choose a segment of your existing contacts—like VIPs, repeat customers, or new contacts—and a location you’d like to target. Then, we’ll find people who are similar to that segment and most likely to engage with your brand.

What’s the right budget for postcard marketing?

Postcards are more expensive than email, but with some direct mail features you can use data you’ve collected from your digital marketing to make smart decisions about your budget and target audience.

In Mailchimp, you can spend as little as 75 cents a card to print, stamp, and mail beautiful postcards to people around the world. Plus, there are no minimums required for your order.

These aren’t like the oversized mailers and catalogs that can be expensive to design. Each postcard sent through Mailchimp is 4 x 6 inches and printed on everyday digital gloss paper stock, which makes them a great canvas for design assets you’ve used in your other marketing.

Whether you’re sending 1 postcard or thousands, you can do low-price direct mail marketing in Mailchimp on any budget. But there are a few ways to make to make your money go further:

  • Reach your most-engaged contacts. Choose segments of your audience that are most likely to act on your postcards, so that you see a greater return.
  • Get specific when you’re targeting new people. Our audience building tool will find new people in a specific location who are similar to your existing contacts. To make sure you’re sending postcards to an audience that will be interested in your brand, pick a segment or tag you’d like us to match.
  • Make your postcards measurable. Include a promo code from your connected e-commerce store to see how much postcards are adding to your bottom line and get a clear picture of what’s working, so you can adjust your budget as needed.

Resources to help you master your postcard marketing

How Postcards Can Help Your Brand Stand Out

Postcards work with your other marketing channels to get more eyes on your brand. You already know a lot about your audience from the emails and ads you use to target them. Now you can take that data to send them beautiful postcards they can hold on to. And since most people need to hear a brand’s message at least 7 times before they make up their mind about buying, postcards give you a unique way to introduce yourself. Learn why you should make postcards part of your modern marketing strategy

Getting Started with Postcards

Learn how Mailchimp postcards work, how much they cost, and where you can send them. Use postcards to share promo codes, announce an event, recover abandoned carts, or just say thank you. Add them to your multichannel marketing strategy to reinforce the messages you’ve sent through emails, ads, and elsewhere. Learn the basics of sending printed postcards

Create a One-Time Send Postcard

The one-time send postcard is designed to be the simplest postcard campaign in Mailchimp. Send postcards to an audience of 1, thousands, or somewhere in between. Target any of your contacts around the world and we’ll help you reach them—even if their addresses aren’t stored in your list. Check out the steps for creating a one-time send postcard

Create a Recurring Postcard

Automate your postcards with a recurring campaign. The recurring campaign automatically sends at regular intervals on your behalf, so you can focus on other things. Use this campaign to showcase a product, remind people of events, share promo codes, and more. Choose a schedule and audience, set a budget, and we’ll take care of the rest. With each new send, we’ll check your audience for new contacts or addresses, and order as many postcards as your budget allows. Get the steps for creating a recurring postcard

Create an Abandoned Cart Postcard

The abandoned cart postcard campaign helps you turn shoppers into buyers. It targets your online store visitors who add products to their shopping cart and then leave without buying. If a shopper puts stuff in their cart and leaves it there for 24 hours, we’ll automatically send a postcard order to the printer. This delay gives customers a reasonable amount of time to return to your store on their own, or with the help of an abandoned cart email. Use abandoned cart postcards together with promo codes and abandoned cart emails to give shoppers an extra push. See how to create your abandoned cart postcard

How to Grow Your Audience with Postcards and Landing Pages

Combining postcards with landing pages can help you find new customers and get them to stick around. Reach new people who are a lot like your existing contacts with a postcard that includes a link to your landing page. Then, people who get your postcard can visit your page and take the next step you’ve defined: join your list, buy your stuff, or anything in between. Follow our step-by-step recipe

Verify or Format the Address Field

In order to receive a postcard, a contact’s first name, last name, and mailing address need to be correctly stored and formatted in your list. Your first and last name fields need to be associated with the merge tags FNAME and LNAME, respectively. The address list field needs to be associated with the merge tag ADDRESS. Learn how to format addresses for postcards

If your business is based in the European Union (EU), or you process the personal data of individuals in the EU, the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) affects you. We’ve updated Mailchimp signup forms to help you stay compliant with this law. Our optional GDPR-friendly forms include checkboxes for opt-in consent, and editable sections that explain how and why you are using data. After you set up your GDPR-friendly form, you can create and send to segments of your audience that have consented to receive direct mail. Learn how to use GDPR forms to collect permissions for postcards

Getting Started with Segments

You don’t have to send a generic postcard to all your contacts at once. Keeping your sends targeted makes it easy to customize your content based on who you’re talking to. If you have a large list of contacts, smaller, segmented mailings can even help your budget go further. Decide which segments of your audience are most likely to engage with your postcard and get the best ROI. Learn more about segmentation