Want to get noticed? Try lumpy direct mail.

With email open rates consistently falling, direct mail, the physical through the letter box stuff can be the only way to get a message read, and lumpy direct mail is the addition of a product into the mailing that makes it that bit ‘lumpy’ and therefore creates a bit of interest and excitement for the recipient.

The On-line Crowd

People often describe on-line media such as twitter, facebook, google+ as networking rooms where people are just shouting louder and louder trying to be heard, but still everyone is climbing over themselves to get into this room, apparently it’s the in-place!

The Off-line Space

I have a different idea, let’s swim upstream, do something different, you want to get noticed? I recommend you try lumpy direct mail which still very much has its place within the marketing mix.

Email marketing is much the same, my inbox has a constant stream of emails from suppliers, wannabe suppliers and spammers vying for my attention, and unless the headline happens to grab my attention, in the bin it goes.

Do you know how much physical mail I received today?

Nothing, not one piece of mail landed on my desk, I wonder how much you received? What’s the ratio of sales & marketing emails received to Direct Mail, and if done well then the below cartoon may just ring true.

The key is obviously Direct Mail done with thought, not just a letter and leaflet, but a well considered marketing piece, using lumpy mail– the sort of mail that provides intrigue due to its size, shape, bulk and rewards the recipient on opening with a little gift.

Here at Sussex we use various forms of direct mail, we mail mugs filled with chocolate, we send catalogue packs filled with goodies, we send newsletters and at Christmas and Easter we often send promotional gifts to our customer base.

Why use Lumpy Mail?

At the minimum it acts as a marketing touch, a reminder to our point of contact, but at its best and most effective we send a useful promotional product to a customer who is (1) grateful and (2) whatever gift we have sent lasts for months and acts as a little reminder of us, subliminally if on the desk top acting as a constant advert and puts us at arms reach for when we are needed next.

Such product ideas we have used include individually personalised desk top calendars, printed mugs with chocolate, coasters, chocolate Santas and printed sticky notes.

Each item, the product, the product colour, the printed message etc have all been carefully considered for the market.

When was the last time you sent your customers a little reminder by post? 

For help and ideas to find the right product to deliver your message to your market please get in touch, we’ll be happy to help, call the team 01273 493618.


Desktop Calendars, the most cost effective advertising medium.

In today’s virtual world Desktop Calendars are not going to be most marketers idea of the most cost effective advertising medium available! But what other marketing mediums are guaranteed to be seen every working day?

Prime Marketing Real Estate.

If your target audience sits at a desk for a large proportion of the day then that work space is absolutely prime marketing real estate if you can occupy part of that space. This is why coasters or mouse mats have in the past been such effective promotional products as they sit in this space and are so visible.

Premiums v. Gifts

At this time of year we and our customers move our attention away from what I might call advertising premiums and look instead for business gifts. With the desktop in mind I think printed, personalised, calendars are a great gift but they also represent 12 months repeat advertising.

This year we have produced a business gift which we feel is a nice thank you to our top 100 customers for their business this year. Our customer base is nation-wide so a mailable item is essential. We have tried to go the extra mile using bespoke photography that has been taken across Sussex when Andrew & his friends have been out on the mountain bikes in our beautiful county that is our name-sake.

Sussex Promotions 2019 desktop Calendar

Desktop Calendars – 12 month product!

This promotional desktop calendar will hopefully be well received. It’s a nice quality product, useful of course, it does its primary job of saying “thank you” to our customers.

But by the nature of what it is this gift of course has a 12 month shelf life. It will act as a subtle reminder of us to our customers for all of next year, sat in their prime marketing real estate.

Just re-read the above, it’s the really important part and it’s why I think Desk Top Calendars are the most cost effective advertising medium:

  • a gift that has a 12 month shelf life
  • subtle reminder
  • ALL of next year
  • sat in prime marketing real estate

Wine & Chocolates?

Now yes, you can spend just as much money on a couple of bottles of wine, on boxes of chocolates or tubs of sweets, which will be well received, may be better received initially.

But as December progresses all the other suppliers’ bottles of wine, boxes of chocolates and tubs of sweets merge into one collection. They’ll be distributed amongst the team but none are really remembered and certainly not come mid January!

How are you saying thank you and Merry Christmas to your customers this December?

If you would like help with promotional products for your customers give us a call on 01273 493618 or leave a comment below.


Chocolate Promotional Products, one of my favourites!

There are literally thousands of promotional products but some are real winner, one of my favourites are using Chocolate Promotional Products!

My first job was on a graduate training programme within the Office Products market, part of the programme was working with sales.

It struck me that sending a catalogue to a new client in the post in an envelope was exactly what all the competition would do.

So instead we starting hand delivering (that change the delivery time from all other post).

We used a printed carrier bag (that changed the packaging) instead of an envelope and inside was a catalogue, some product samples and in summer we added the treat of a bag of skittles and in the winter chocolate.

This was my first foray into using Chocolate as a sales & marketing tool and it certainly made for warmer follow-up calls.

Since entering the promotional product market I’ve realised the opportunities available with printed chocolates and confectionery items and it’s definately one of my favourites!

Little Fireworks of Happiness!

One of the key strengths to Promotional Products is their longevity, ensure a product is useful and it has the potential to hang around a long time communicating your message.

Printed chocolates and sweets are of course consumed, the packaging often discarded, although sometimes the packaging can make a useful container / pill pot.

But the use of promotional confectionery is not about ongoing promotion, it is about breaking the ice, saying thank you, building relationships, it is heart warming and cracks a smile on your customers and/or prospects’ faces.

I like our analogy of promotional products being Marketing Ninjas, they typically occupy Prime Marketing Real Estate such as your customer’s desktop, if useful they sit there everyday, being seen, being used and 24/7 deliver your brand, your logo, your message – silent ruthless marketing assassins!

Promotional sweets and chocolate promotional products however are more like little fireworks of happiness, they don’t hang around, they don’t continue to deliver that message but they do for a very short instance deliver happiness and when starting a relationship or building a relationship the little details matter.

We have many promotional sweet and printed chocolate solutions available in innovative packaging that can all be printed, there are also biscuit tins, mints, jelly beans, certainly plenty of choice.

The right Packaging for your Chocolate Promotional Products

Part of the decision making process as to the right sweets or chocolates is going to be largely influenced by the packaging available.

How the sweets and chocolate promotional products are going to be distributed will influence the choice of packaging and then narrowing the decision further will be the print requirements of the marketer and what print options either the sweet itself or the packaging offers.

If we are giving out promotional confectionery at a trade show or using a sales force to hand deliver then the size and shape of the packaging might have little bearing on the decision, however if the campaign is to create lumpy mail for a direct mail postal campaign then of course weight & size is going to have a major influence.

A Tin of Sweets, literally using a can with ring pull just like a tin of baked beans is a great form of packaging for trade shows and handing out sweets, however while certainly lumpy not necessarily the best mailer.

Chocolate Promotional Products Mailers

In our video below we love the 9 pack of Neapolitan Chocolates that will make a great addition to any mailing, we have a mortgage adviser client who adds these to his final mailing pack to his clients with all the contracts. He has of course done the deal but his little added treat is firstly unexpected and secondly just says thank you, and for Dean a major source of new clients is via referral, it can be the little things that just make the difference.

We use the Neapolitan Chocolate Squares ourselves for our own little thank yous, we send mugs to new clients after a job is complete and add to that mug a little bag of 6 printed Neapolitan Chocolate squares that always go down a treat and encourage customers to say a little thank you back. Another little firework of happiness!

In the video we also look at the box of 4 printed (scrummy!!) handmade Belgian chocolates come in a wide range of fillings and flavours! Yes the actual chocolate itself is printed! That in itself makes people stop, look, smile raise a question if at a trade show or conference. While they might not get shared, they do often get talked about!

So if you are looking to create that little firework of happiness, open doors, start an event with a smile, treat your audience with tea & chocolate, surprise and delight with a little lumpy mail then I recommend promotional sweets and printed chocolates, just remember to consider the logistics of delivery and the amount of print and we can help you narrow down the options. A good starting point is the web category: Promotional Sweets

Alternatively please just call us and we’ll find you the right printed promo sweets or chocolates for your marketing campaign, 01273 493618

If you’ve used Sweets or Chocolates we’d love to hear what you’ve used and how you presented them and have they worked?


Branded Easter Eggs – make your customer smile!

Easter Sunday is March 31st giving you five weeks to execute a great marketing activity for your best customers. Chocolate and right now Branded Easter Eggs are a sure fire winner for about 95% of the population. It’s just a great feel good treat that apart from those still on their New Year diets are going to love!

Branded Easter Eggs

The traditional Branded Easter Egg box is available in a range of different sizes, but a fully bespoke Easter Egg box printed full colour to your exact specification and brand is available from as little as 100 pieces.

If well packed in secondary packaging the Branded Easter Eggs might survive the postal system, but probably best for hand delivery or a real treat for visitors to your exhibition stand this March/April.

Branded Easter Egg Boxes

What’s the first things any customer or prospect asks at a meeting, “Fancy a Cuppa?” just imagine the ice breaking when you reply with “Sure! and I’ve brought you an Easter Egg!”

Alternative Chocolate Promotional Products

There are lots of alternative chocolate promotional products some of which will make a terrific item of lumpy mail, better for mailing through its shape & weight.

See Andrew talking through some alternatives in our video below:

Alternatively, a printed mug actually makes a surprisingly good mailing as there are good, tried and tested mailing cartons available that will protect the mug and ensure it arrives in one piece.

Add chocolate to the mug & packaging and you have the perfect Easter promotion, create a little happiness with chocolate but also hang around with the long lasting printed promotional mug that could be used for months, if not years, but always have that subconscious feel good link to the chocolate that was inside it!

We’re at the end of winter, Easter marks the start of spring, a busy business quarter ahead before the summer, a great time to kick start 2013 and shake-off those winter blues.

Andrew Nash is Managing Director of Sussex Promotions, your one stop shop for all promotional items including sweets and chocolates.

If you have a comment about promo chocolates, branded Easter Eggs or lumpy mail we’d love to hear from you – please use the section below!