Self Mailers: When Less Is More

Self mailers can offer more bang for your buck—if you know how to use them.
By Jim Thompson

In 2021, folded self mailers accounted for 18.7% of direct mail sent, while postcards accounted for 25.2%, according to Who’s Mailing What! direct mail statistics. Both types of mail pieces are considered self mailers. Given their unique advantages, it’s easy to see why they’re so prevalent.

To understand how you can leverage self mailers for your marketing needs, let’s first get a clear definition.

What is a Self Mailer?

Self mailers come in many forms but share one important similarity—they do not require an envelope. Instead, addresses and postage can be printed or affixed directly onto the mailpiece itself, offering some advantages:

  • Without envelopes, self mailers are often more cost-effective, requiring less material or the use of an inserter.
  • By forgoing an envelope, a well-designed piece can make an instant impact on its recipient.
  • Especially true of folded self mailers, you have ample real estate to showcase compelling designs, callouts, and promotions.

Self Mailer Options

Tension can help you make a statement that converts using one of these self mailers:

  • Postcard: Sometimes considered flats, postcards can be printed and then rolled and delivered to you for further customization before mailing.
  • Bi-fold and Tri-fold Mailers: These self mailers are created from one piece of paper, folded, and glued along the edges. With more space, they offer a lot of creative opportunity.
  • Snap Pack Mailer: Typically perforated on three sides, these mail pieces look official, stand out and add a layer of security for important messages.

Marketing with Self mailers

Minimal materials and design potential make self mailers a great money-saving option, well-suited for mass-marketing campaigns. Ideal for B2C businesses, self mailers can be remarkably effective marketing tools for non-profits, retailers, real estate agents and financial institutions, just to name a few.  

For further reading, check out these tips on selecting the right format for your needs. Just be sure to follow the USPS self mailer requirements to ensure your mailpiece reaches its destination successfully.

 

Find more helpful self mailer tips here.

Tension Corporation is a global leader in envelope products, packaging and packaging automation solutions. It is a privately held and operated, international company based in Kansas City, Mo. Tension manufactures billions of envelopes annually and their envelope division serves a variety of industries, including financial, insurance and direct marketing, plus they work directly with third-party providers. The packaging and automation division of Tension provides software, consumables, automation and service and support for fulfillment to the e-commerce and pharmaceutical industries.

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