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Communication is paramount to establishing relationships with customers, and envelopes are the delivery device for most sales letters and other correspondence. As such, it is vital that your envelope designs are able to attract enough attention to motivate potential customers to open them up and take a look at what's inside. You can glean inspiration from the following creative design ideas for envelopes.
There is no rule that says envelopes have to be white, and going "off-color" can help set you apart from your competition the second your customers open their mailboxes. You can design envelopes with solid colors, such as blue, orange, yellow or red, and with either white or complementary-colored text. Or, design your envelopes with a pattern such as polka dots, bubbles, stripes or an assortment of shapes.
Many companies design envelopes with their logo in the upper left hand corner, and there's nothing wrong with this. However, you can add more power to your brand by also including a large, watermarked logo as the background on the front of your envelope. It's easy to do simply by placing a large version of your vector logo in the center of your envelope and making is partially transparent. You can also offset your logo to either the left or right side of your envelope, so that part of it is cut off (yet it is still easily recognized as your logo). This design style intrigues the imagination and because it is a bit off key, it captures your audience's attention immediately.
You can also make an envelope from a photograph, manipulated or not. This is especially useful if you're promoting a particular product, such as lawnmower cutting green grass or a hair salon specializing in celebrity-style haircuts. When the benefit is visual, you can essentially turn your envelope into a postcard to start your marketing pitch before your customers even open it.
Speaking of starting your marketing pitch early, you can include teaser text on the front and pack of your envelope to encourage recipients to open it for a closer look. Use a font that mimics handwriting and include text such as: "Do you know how to save 50% in heating costs this year? Look inside to find out" with an arrow pointing to the sealed envelope flap. No matter what creative style your envelope is designed in, don't forget to have your envelope printed on premium paper. Premium envelope papers such as 70-pound white wove finish or 24-pound synergy bond enrich your design colors to stand out more and lend credibility to your promotions since they feel good in your customers' hands. Also remember that envelopes aren't just used for marketing - they're also the perfect and logical companions for birth announcements, graduation invitations, wedding announcements and invitations, and a host of other correspondence. As a graphic designer, your ability to craft creative envelopes is unlimited, so don't be afraid to break the mold and design something that's absolutely stellar.