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3 Tips to Help Restaurants Leverage the ‘Happy’ that Direct Mail Brings

February 21, 2021

Direct Mail is known for its ability to create a physical connection to the human brain.  It has been proven by science¹, that direct mail’s physical nature, touches the part of the brain that tells us we’re happy or excited – something everyone needs, especially today during unexpected times.  Fulfill that need and it will undoubtedly lead to a pleasant feeling about your brand.  

Think about it.  When you go out to get the mail lately, don’t you sometimes feel a certain amount of happiness or excitement?  If you have felt it, would you say it’s higher than normal?  For many consumers, it is much higher and it’s due to the fact that people aren’t as mobile and not as able to shop for their own gratification as they once were. Since they need to stay home in order to be safe, going out to the mailbox to collect deliveries and mail is starting to feel like a hunt for little gifts or as I like to call them, pandemic pleasantries.

Consider this ‘hunt’ for something that provides a ‘happy’ feeling to consumers your ‘direct mail call-to-action.’  It’s also your opportunity to be helpful to that consumer by providing something of value or of excitement to them, and hopefully with their first name printed right on the front of package or on the piece itself. 

Here are three ideas of how you might utilize this opportunity to protect your market share. 


If you have a customer list of people who have signed up for your loyalty program, address data from a sweepstakes or better yet, actual transactional data from delivery orders you’ve received from customers during the pandemic with a physical home address, why not consider mailing them something you’ve never sent before?

Keep in mind, these are people who have paid real dollars into your business so it might be time to do the same for them. Yes, there is a cost to do so, but don’t let that stop you as the cost of losing that same loyal customer would be far greater, especially if you consider their overall lifetime value.


You could send them a beautifully designed and well-printed direct mail piece, something like a fold-out menu or perhaps direct mail postcard featuring a special ‘stay at home’ offer for something like a free entrée with purchase (a BOGO if you will) that can be delivered to the mailbox as a “thank you” for their continued loyalty to your restaurant.

You could feature the free entrée offer right smack in the center, so it’s in front of their face as they hold your beautifully printed piece covered with your menu offerings and your beautiful food photography.

You could mail your guests a reusable facemask with your restaurant’s logo printed on the front and accompanied with a fun message about social distancing screen-printed on the front.  Providing PPP items such as face masks shows them you care about their health and safety.  It also tells them your brand is relevant and you’re not afraid to talk about what is going on—instead, you’re offering to help.
Talk about a great opportunity for you to promote your brand, that happy person now gets to move about the community to places like the local grocery store or gas station, with your logo sitting right on their face. There’s no better billboard than an unspoken restaurant endorsement from someone who equally depends on you to be available to provide that delicious dinner on nights when they just don’t have it in them to cook a meal for a family of five.

In today’s current world of lockdowns and stay-at-home orders, the need for restaurants to deliver happiness and great experiences has never been more important, in fact it is absolutely critical in order to remain top-of-mind and ensure that your food remains in the happy mouths of the people you depend on most, your loyal Guests.
Source: 1. Canada Post