• Graphic Composition

How Scented Direct Mail Can Increase Response Rates





Our sense of smell is extremely powerful. A scent can elicit vivid memories that take you to your mom’s kitchen growing up, to your favorite beach vacation spot, or just about anywhere you have been before. Our sense of smell is our most powerful sense, even above sight and sound. The location of our sense of smell — in the same part of our brain that affects emotions, memory, and creativity — is the reason we react so powerfully to it. This is the reason you should add it to your next direct mail campaign.


To harness that power with your direct mail and make people respond is a marketer’s dream. In order to do that effectively you will need to take the time to figure out how to tie scent to your marketing message. If you create a message and then incorporate a smell that is not compatible, you have doomed the campaign. They must be symbiotic, both with the message and the visual images.


What should you consider in the creation of your scented direct mail? Here are a few things to start with:


  • Identify the message: This is not just conveyed with words but also with images.

  • Identify the emotion: What are you trying to make people feel?

  • Create the call to action: This needs to be very specific and easy to identify.

  • Create the scent: Now decide what scent will enhance all of the above and drive them to respond.


Scented Mailer Ideas

Imagine for a moment that you are a company that needs to sell brownie mix. Of course you will put pictures of brownies on the mailer, but the really good smell of the brownies will invoke emotions and drive the action to buy the mix.


Imagine you are a restaurant and want to sell takeout dinners. Add a BBQ scent to a mailpiece with your menu on it.


Imagine you are car dealership and want to increase car sales. You send a mailer with a new car on it. Now add leather car scent to your mailer to remind people of the excited feeling of buying a new vehicle.


Imagine you sell a cleanser that gets rid of skunk smell. You can use the scent of a skunk to remind people how horrible it is. I would advise you to use only a small amount. No need to stink them out of their home.


Are you ready to get started?

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