Direct mail can be a pivotal tool in connecting with your audience and inspiring engagement and conversions, but how you present your direct mailers can have a massive impact on their effectiveness.

Direct mail provides unique opportunities for HCP prospects to interact with your content on a more memorable, tactile level than many digital marketing campaigns. Healthcare marketers can take full advantage of sensory experiences created by various materials and finishes to make a more lasting impression on your audience.

What Are Direct Mail Finishes?

Direct mail generally yields higher open and response rates than email, and campaigns can be designed to stand out from the common, white paper or cardstock used by many competitors. Experimenting with different finishes can help capture your target audience’s attention, while elevating the impact of your messaging.

Paper finishing refers to the manufacturing processes and surface decorations of your direct mailers. Just as direct mail can take many unique shapes, sizes and designs, there are a plethora of finishing options available to create more memorable experiences with recipients and present your brand in a better light.

Memorable & Effective Mail Finishes

Paper mailers can be coated or uncoated, based on your desired effect. Coated paper is treated with a sealing agent to produce a shiny and smooth texture, while uncoated paper offers a full range of types and textures to choose from.

Some of the most popular and striking paper finishes include: (Prod: if possible, include images to accompany the different finishes)


This gives your paper a shiny effect that conveys sharp, vivid colors and images especially well—perfect for brochures and mailers relying on high-quality photos or designs.


Cockle finishing creates a rustic, handmade appearance, along with a rougher surface texture. It’s perfect for adding more personalization and sophistication to your mailers.


Embossed paper features raised details for customizable texture patterns recipients can see and feel.


This finish style is typically used on stationary and business letterheads, and features subtle, transparent impressions throughout the page to give mailers a more refined, elegant look.


This finish has a soft texture and flat, muted appearance that makes bright and pastel colors pop!


As its name implies, this finish simulates the texture of linen cloth for a lavish and classy presentation that will certainly help your messaging stand out.


This is the perfect middle ground between matte and glossy, featuring a slight sheen and sharp image quality, without making the paper reflective or hard to read. Soft and smooth to the touch, it’s ideal for leaflets, brochures, and mailers that may require the recipient to write on it.


Monitor your campaign results and A/B test what finishes produce higher open and engagement rates among your various audience segments to help identify the most effective styles.

While some paper finishes are pricier than others, discovering the most impactful can be invaluable in helping to improve brand awareness and engagement.

Work With PDQ Communications to Deploy Truly Sensational Direct Mail Campaigns!

Optimize the impact of your HCP direct mail campaigns by enlisting PDQ Communications to help craft the perfect messaging and mailers that leave lasting impressions on your audiences.

PDQ provides a wide range of direct mail design options and printing services to give your marketing materials a distinctive look and feel that conveys premium quality and a high level of professionalism.

Envelopes, brochures, catalogs, business cards, and more—no matter the healthcare marketing material, PDQ can help you create exclusive and customized mailers that match your brand’s unique identity, command attention, and inspire responses.

We also utilize UV printing—a digital printing method applicable to virtually any paper type, which seals special ink to the page via ultraviolet light, for faster and more cost-effective runs.

PDQ Communications can help you deploy unforgettable direct mail campaigns with designs and finishes that will grab and hold the attention of your HCP audiences, while encouraging them to interact more with your brand.

Contact us today to find out how we can help perfect your direct mail strategies!

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