6 award-winning letterbox campaigns you have to see

by Catherine Woodside
27 March 2017
6 award-winning letterbox campaigns you have to see
These six award-winning letterbox campaigns differ greatly in terms of content and style, but all push the boundaries of messaging and design.

Chunky Mail

Agency: JWT London
Client: Nestlé
D&AD Professional Awards – Wood Pencil / Direct / Direct Mail / 2012

Kit Kat Chunky Mail

To convey the chunkiness of Kit Kat Chunky, JWT London developed a campaign using address data. The goal was to send out cards similar to those used when postal officers are unable to deliver packages that are too big – or, in Kit Kat’s case, too chunky.

Similar to a real postal card, recipients were directed to collect their free Kit Kat Chunky from their local newsagent – a trek worth making when a free chocolate bar is promised at the finishing line.
Mimicking a real postal card also ensured recipients would consider the card seriously at first glance. With a reported 87% of recipients collecting their Kit Kat Chunky, the campaign’s intention to give the product a widespread trial was a huge success. Additionally, photographs of the card were circulated on blogs and social networking sites, generating further media buzz.

Bullseye: Develop a more targeted approach to letterbox marketing

Air Force FM

Agency: George Patterson Y&R Melbourne
Client: Australian Defence Force Recruiting
D&AD Professional Awards – Graphite Pencil / Direct / Direct Mail / 2014
Cannes 2013 Silver – Direct, Bronze – Promo
New York Festival, Grand Prix, Direct
New York Festival, First Prize, Direct, Mailings
New York Festival, Second Prize, Direct, Government
CLIO Awards, Direct, Gold

Air Force FM

Think you’ve got what it takes for a challenging career in electronic engineering? This clever advertising campaign nabbed a bunch of awards in its efforts to recruit student engineers. The main challenge was that young engineering students weren’t aware the Air Force offered these positions.

The brief? Find the most skilled radio technicians for the Air Force. The objective? Encourage potential technicians to use their engineering skills to build a radio and listen to Air Force FM, then subsequently enrol.

Engineering students were sent a direct mail pack with all the parts needed to build a functioning radio, but no instructions. Recruits who built the radio and then tuned into Air Force FM – a dedicated radio station created just for the campaign – heard an ad on loop directing them to apply online. The campaign’s strengths were in its ability to be practical and direct in both its approach and targeting.

Vangardist’s “HIV Heroes” issue 

Agency: Saatchi & Saatchi
Client:  Vangardist Magazine
D&AD Professional Awards – Yellow Pencil / Direct / Direct Mail / 2016  
Gold Cannes Lion


One of the more controversial and unique campaigns to bring awareness to an important cause was Vangardist Magazine’s “HIV Heroes” issue. 

The German men’s magazine partnered with Saatchi & Saatchi Switzerland to invite its readers to participate in ending the social stigma surrounding HIV. Despite 30 years of campaigning, activism, and research, HIV remains the sixth biggest cause of death in the world.
To coincide with Life Ball, one of the largest HIV awareness events held annually in Vienna, all 3000 copies of the spring issue were printed with ink infused with HIV+ blood donated by three individuals.
With strict legal instructions to warn readers about the production of the issue, the magazine comprised an outer wrapper, forcing readers to break the seal and thus help break the stigma. The magazine was initially distributed to subscribers in Germany, Switzerland and Austria, but huge demand followed as the conversation was swept up in a media storm.
The campaign reached over 55 million people, and social media interactions clocked up at over seven million. The campaign has so far picked up 26 awards worldwide.

Dan Murphy's

25th Australasian Catalogue Awards

Dan Murphy's catalogue

In 2014, liquor company Dan Murphy’s approached Hardie Grant Media to make its Buyer’s Guide more customer focused. The aim was to appeal to readers’ interests and passions without impacting the company’s successful track record of driving product sales. 

Hardie Grant Media achieved this objective by creating a guide that embraced the art of storytelling and emphasised each product’s use in context, transforming a humble sales tool into something of value to customers. The result was a perfect balance of writing engaging and useful content, and simultaneously meeting the merchandising team’s brief.
To guarantee ROI, it was essential that both editorial and product promotion had equal footing – the narrative provided context for the products, but still allowed them to take centre stage. The team also created seasonal features to increase awareness of different liquor choices, and inspire customers to contemplate new categories and brands.
Ultimately, Dan Murphy’s achieved a steady upward trend in sales that was directly attributed to the new-look Buyer’s Guide. The Christmas 2015 edition resulted in 15.5% year-on-year sales growth.

Angus Barrett Saddlery 


Angus Barrett Saddlery catalogue

Angus Barrett Saddlery had three clear objectives in producing its winning catalogue.

Three objectives

  • Present the current range of products to its customer database, providing them with a convenient point of sale during the Christmas period.
  • Enhance and effectively communicate the brand story, and improve brand awareness.
  • Increase sales.

Given a large percentage of the saddlery’s mailing list lived in rural and remote Australia, with little access to physical shops or the internet, the goal was to create a logical and comprehensive print catalogue with clear and detailed product images, descriptions, prices, and options.
The catalogue opened with broader product categories to appeal to non-saddlery customers. Significant thought was also put into the catalogue’s look and feel in order to reflect the tangible nature of the company’s handmade leather products.
Storytelling was the final ingredient to craft a keepsake publication. Chapter openings and inspiring images of products being both made and used told the story behind each item.
As a direct result of this catalogue, Angus Barrett Saddlery saw a significant increase on the previous year's sales for the same period and a considerable spike in subscription rates for the catalogue member list.

Angus Barrett Saddlery

Club Med Australia and new Zealand

2016 ACA WINNER - Gold - Tourism, Education and Government
International Summit Creative awards (US) - 5,000 submissions from 21 countries - Silver - Print Materials Campaign, Silver - Catalogue Design, Bronze - Collateral Redesign

Club Med

Club Med Australia and New Zealand has won several awards for the creative execution of its Happiness brochures. Historically, Club Med had produced a single annual brochure for all resorts worldwide, and based its catalogues on European templates. In 2016, together with Convert Advertising, a campaign was designed designed around the idea of placing the reader in the resort. 

The team ‘Australianised’ the design and catalogue campaign, revamping it for Australian and New Zealand markets. They created a compelling format using words and images to put the reader in a Club Med mood – and, ultimately, in the resort itself.
The creative and design concept consisted of four 16-page, magazine-format Happiness brochures. Created and dispatched every quarter, the brochures were based on magazine content, including news stories, articles, and seasonal resort offers. They were delivered to travel agents (for use with clients) and sent directly to customers (both current and potential), inspiring them for the largest brochure at the end of the year.
Finally, the redesigned and reconfigured 44-page Resort magazine was sent to travel agents and customers. It followed the same visual format as the brochures but sold all the resorts the travel agents and consumers had seen and engaged with during the year.


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About the author
Catherine Woodside
Head of Media Sales

Catherine has 20 years of media experience working with a variety of media solutions from newspapers, magazines, letterbox and digital offerings. Her background stems from two distinct sales areas: media sales, selling solutions to major advertisers and consumer sales, selling media to the end consumer through retail and subscription packages.

More articles by Catherine Woodside