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Do you use packaging inserts to build customer loyalty, enhance your brand, and add to your total sales? If you don’t, then it’s time to consider adding these simple card-like pieces of written or printed literature to every e-commerce product you send out to customers.

Product inserts are a simple way to boost sales, build customer loyalty, deliver important information, promote special offers, and more.

Why are package inserts such a smart way to ramp up your marketing efforts? And, what are the best kinds of inserts to use in order to get the job done? Finally, what are the unwritten rules of using inserts?

Why Package Inserts Make Economic Sense

Package inserts make great economic sense because they give you so much “bang for your buck.” They’re not just simple to create and inexpensive, but they also have the potential to increase customer loyalty, sell stockpiled merchandise, cross-promote with other company products and services, target specific categories of customers, and more.

Here are some details about what inserts can do for your business.

  • Boost Loyalty: When you include useful, tasteful, interesting inserts, your current customers notice. Whether it’s a percent-off coupon code for their next purchase, a free ice cream cone at the local sweet shop, or a fun fridge magnet featuring the company logo, package inserts build brand loyalty with ease.
  • Move Stagnant Merchandise: Have a warehouse full of a soon-to-be-discontinued product? If so, consider using the power of packaging inserts to move the slow-movers. You can either offer it at bargain-basement prices to select customers or give some of it away as a “free gift” as a token of your appreciation to current customers. Both techniques will help you create a stronger bond between your company and the customers.
  • Cross Sell: You can carefully target buyers with inserts. Consider including insert notices, ads, or coupons for similar products that have proven to work well in crossover campaigns. This is a perfect example of encouraging customers to buy from you rather than from a competitor.
  • Use “Free” Space: The space in your product’s package is “free,” because you’ve already paid for it, in a way. Why not use that open space to advertise, inform, and engage your current customer base. Or, add to your base by including “Refer a friend” inserts that come with rewards for customers who send you more business.
  • Easy Targeting: Whenever you send a package, you know the specific demographics of the recipient. Use that information to target your inserts with precision. For example, when delivering a new flashlight, add an insert that offers 10 percent off on the company’s battery charging devices. Targeted inserts are an ideal way to expand your sales base.
  • Minimal Printing Expense: Inserts are simple little pieces of marketing that do some heavy lifting. The expense of making and printing them is minimal, especially compared to complex boxes and other kinds of packages. That’s why it makes sense to include at least one insert with every item you ship.


Etiquette Rules for Using Inserts

  • Is there really such a thing as “package-insert etiquette”? There most certainly is, and you’ve probably already seen many examples in the products you’ve ordered online. Package inserts can be written, designed, and positioned in effective or ineffective ways.
  • When you break one of the etiquette rules, chances are that your insert is not going to do the job you wanted it to do. Here are some of the most important rules to follow when you include inserts with your delivered e-commerce packages.
  • Don’t use too many inserts. “Over-stuffing” muddles your message and looks desperate.
  • Make each insert tasteful and well-designed. This means avoiding color schemes that clash and ugly images that only serve to turn customers away from your brand.
  • Position the insert so that it doesn’t flop around inside the package. Sloppy placement means the customer might lose it in the excitement of opening the package.
  • Be smart, and design your insert so that it is easy to post on a fridge or bulletin board. You get bonus points if your insert fits neatly into a wallet or purse.
  • A no-no: inserts that are too small, too large, or so oddly-shaped that they are destined for a one-way trip to the trash container.
  • Don’t anger your customers by using cheap, rub-off ink or coloring on inserts. Want to convey the image that your company is “cheap”? Then use quality ink.
  • Avoid pointy, sharp corners and edges on inserts. We’ve all gotten those knife-like little cards that seem especially designed to cut our hands and give us paper cuts instantly.
  • Avoid using folded inserts. Many customers don’t notice them and assume they’re just extra packing paper. Aim for inserts that are instantly visible.
  • An insert should be stronger and thicker than standard wrapping paper. Otherwise, it can be easily overlooked or lost. Use appropriate paper thickness for inserts, without making them too thick or too thin.
  • Be careful that inserts don’t have a tendency to stick to the inside of the package due to static electricity.
  • It’s a plus if you can add humor or a fun visual image to the inserts you use.
  • At all costs, avoid using offensive language or pushy sales talk on your inserts.
  • Don’t use deceptive inserts that contain misleading offers or discounts.
  • Use inserts made from quality materials. Avoid using an insert that has a cheap look or feel to it.

Five Types of Inserts That Build Brands and Boost Sales

Enhance your overall marketing efforts by using one or more of the most powerful kinds of packaging inserts. Here’s a bit more about each type.

  • Instructional: This category includes things like start-up guides for devices or simple inserts with graphics that show buyers how to use, store, or care for the item that was just delivered to them.
  • Freebies: Human beings love free stuff. Consider using inserts that contain QR codes that can be scanned for free coffee or snacks at national chains. Other great freebie ideas include paper coupons for your company’s other products, company “bucks” that can be used for any good or service your sell, buy-one-get-one-free offers, refrigerator magnets with your company logo on them, and more.
  • Warranties: Warranty cards show that you care about the customer’s experience and want to help them understand how the warranty works, what it covers, and how they can easily find out more information if they desire. Warranties are a vital part of the after-sale support function. The work to build trust between you and your buyers by reassuring them that you stand behind what you sell and are willing to “make things right” when goods don’t live up to expectations.
  • Social: Small card inserts that ask for comments, social media likes, or encourage customers to make an unboxing or review video are great ways to engage them on social media.
  • Queries: To prevent negative reviews on social media or to assist an unsatisfied customer, consider including a query card so they can write any question and send it directly to the company for quick resolution. Also include a website and email address for faster service if they choose to interact with you online.

Super-Charge Your Insert Marketing Power

Would you like to put some high-octane fuel in your company’s marketing tank? Who wouldn’t. The good news is that you can do that very thing by adding packaging inserts. At Mid-Atlantic Packaging, our team has nearly four decades of experience in helping companies ramp up their promotional and sales efforts with strategically placed inserts.

The beauty of adding inserts is that the process is quick and easy, plus you can create the written content exactly as you wish. Give us a call on our toll-free line anytime you want to discuss all your packaging options. The number is (800) 284-1332, and, of course, there’s never a charge for a phone consultation about your needs.

If you’d like to know more about the kinds of products we offer and how we can assist you, check out our website. We look forward to hearing from you.