No matter how lucrative your business offer is or how brilliant your design is, your print investment will go down the drain if you use lousy paper stock for your promotional documents. Especially when opting for direct mail marketing through postcards, having a robust piece of paper is a must else you might end up seeing someone use your coveted postcard to clean his pet’s poop.
THE POSTCARD PAPER STORY
Nicknamed, the Penny postcard, a Massachusetts-based envelope company created the first postcard in the US, back in 1873, made on thin pale white card. The mid 20th century saw the advent of linen postcards made of inexpensive card stock with high rag content that gave it a fabric-like feel. For the first time, this paper stock permitted printing of more colorful and vivid themes on postcards. And then came the Photo chrome era, making way for still photographs finding their place on postcards made of firm and durable paper. Today, the sky is the limit as far as innovation in this industry is concerned. Over the years, postcards have evolved to not just be a messenger of news but a very crucial direct marketing tool, too, and that’s exactly why one needs to be extremely careful about making it more appealing – not only with respect to its content and presentation but also the very material with which it is made.
PAPER OPTIONS – WHAT’S IN THERE FOR YOU
The thicker your stock, the more elegant your postcard will appear. Best printed on thick 16-point paper stock, you can opt for myriad coating options to suit your need and budget. From laminated and ultra violet (UV)-coated cover stocks to uncoated heavy card stocks, there are options aplenty.
Gloss finish cards such as laminated cover stocks are instant attention grabbers, especially if you are into a light-hearted business and plan to use some pop colors in your postcard. The lamination also protects the card from physical damage. If you have a higher budget, perk up the protection layer by using UV-coated cover stock. Not just protection from handling errors, the water-based coating of this stock also renders it a rich finish, adding to the elegance of your card.
If you are aiming to approach your customers with a subtle appeal, opt for matt finish cards with uncoated heavy cover stocks that almost give the touch-and-feel of a greetings card. In fact, if you are creating the post cards for a small target group and plan to write a hand written personalized note, this is the way to go. A word of caution, however, is that uncoated heavy cover stocks being susceptible to handling damages are ‘shipped’ instead of mailed. For mailing, opt for the uncoated cover stock that’s a brilliant combination of sophistication and durability. And if you really want to make a statement, you could go for recycled paper stock that’ll surely strike a chord with its environment-friendly appeal.
Now, get set to look out for a direct marketing and printing company who can provide you with all these options at a cost-effective rate. Discuss your theme, aim and target audience, and don’t forget to ask for paper samples to know what you are getting into. Customers are more likely to link the class of your product or service with the quality of your postcard’s paper stock. Remember, the first impression is often the last one, so put your best foot forward to make it an everlasting one.