When you develop a direct mail campaign for your business, it’s best to use high-quality paper stock for your mail pieces. It sends your campaign’s target audience a message about your company and its brand. Let’s examine the different qualities of paper stock and cardstock to determine what types of paper you should use for your mail campaign.
Components of High-Quality Paper and Cardstock
When you consider whether to use a certain type of paper or cardstock for your campaign, consider the following paper components:
- Opacity: Opacity is how opaque a type of paper or cardstock is. Low-opacity paper stock allows printing ink to show through the other side of the sheet. A high level of opacity means the ink won’t show through the paper, and it indicates high-quality paper stock.
- Brightness: A paper’s brightness measures how much light it reflects, and this component is usually measured in percentages. Brightness creates contrast between the ink and the paper, which increases a printed piece’s readability. Also, printed inks are transparent, and the paper’s brightness gives the ink a more solid appearance. High-quality paper types often have high brightness levels.
- Basis Weight: Basis weight is a classification of paper stock based on the size of 500 sheets, or one ream, of paper. This classification is determined by the speed of the wire and the amount of fiber the paper machine uses to create the stock. Some examples of basis weight include 50# and 60# for text paper, 65# and 80# for cover paper, and 20# and 24# for bond and copy paper.
- Grain: A paper’s grain is the direction that the majority of each sheet’s papers flow. A paper’s grain determines how a paper folds and binds. If you have to fold a piece of paper stock, fold it with the grain, not against. Then the paper will fold more easily and cleanly.
Pay attention to these components when you pick out paper stock for your next mailing campaign. These aspects can tell you whether you’re selecting premium paper and how to handle that paper once you begin working with it.
Reach out to Presort to create a direct mail marketing piece with top-quality direct mail cardstock or paper stock. Get Started
Choosing the Right Finish for Your Direct Mail Piece
Once you consider the paper components listed above, think about how you want your direct mail piece to look. What kind of finish should it have: glossy or matte? Glossy paper or cardstock will give your piece a bright and shiny look, while matte paper will appear bright but flat, with zero shine. If you want to send a postcard to your mailing list, you’ll have to weigh your options and consider matte vs. glossy postcards. Think about which finish fits your brand and the message you want to send. When you determine which finish meets these criteria, you’re one step closer to creating your direct mail marketing piece.
Selecting the Right Printing Format for Your Mail Piece
After you choose your paper and its finish, you need to determine how to print your direct mail piece’s design onto the paper. For instance, you could choose digital printing for your mail piece if your campaign has a short mailing list. Digital printing works best for short print runs, but it has fast turnaround times. If you have a long mailing list, offset printing may work best for you. Offset printing involves metal plates and rubber rollers applying ink to the paper, and it works well for large print runs because it grows cheaper as you print more mail pieces. Consider these factors when you determine how to print your direct mail piece.
How Can Presort Help You Choose the Right Paper and Finish for Your Mail Piece?
Presort provides printing services as well as direct mail services. We collaborate with you to choose the right printing paper for your project. With paper prices consistently on the rise we work hard to ensure our customers receive a quality paper stock at a good price. We offer a wide range of paper thicknesses and paper weight for you to choose from. For example, if you want to create a brochure for your mail campaign, we offer standard brochure paper weight. However, we can provide more customized paper if that’s what you need.
If you want to begin designing and printing a piece for your next direct mail campaign, reach out to Presort today.