The b direct logo Hive

Mailbox Monday


Nothing is more disappointing to a marketer than a missed opportunity.

And nothing is more disappointing to the Bs at B Direct than the seeds of a concept that aren't brought to full fruition.

So, we were disappointed to recently receive an otherwise solid self-mailer from ezCaterer, a B2B company that promotes itself as the "#1 site for business catering. There's good news and bad news. We'll start with the good.

The two-panel piece folds to 6x9, a nice generous size, and its full-color photography and relatively substantial stock help it stand out from other business mail. The address panel (where most people look first because ... well, we all love seeing our name in print) works hard. There's an attractive offer — a $50 Amazon Gift Card — and three at-a-glance bullet point benefits, presented with icons: 80,000+ restaurants, 187,000 "COVID-smart boxed lunches, options for any occasion. There's also an appealing photo which breaks up all the type, although we would suggest using that "hot spot" above the recipient's name and address for the offer or a bold call-to-action.

Inside, there's well-organized information and a nice use of white space. There's a glowing testimonial from California's "Spencer T." There's a list of familiar restaurants, presented with logos and paid off with a call-to-action. Then, on the righthand panel, there are screen shots of the ezCater platform on both a mobile and a tablet, alongside a list of features and benefits, again with contemporary, eye-catching icons.

So far, so good, right? So why are we reluctant to praise the piece?

Because the creative team came up with a "concept," and then let it die on the vine.

The art or cover panel of the piece features the headline: "EVERY OFFICE HERO NEEDS A SIDEKICK." And it pays it off with a picture of ... food.


Where is the office hero? Where is a fun image of an office worker with a mask and cape? Or an otherwise mild-mannered assistant being lauded for their "heroic" efforts? There are multiple ways to depict an "OFFICE HERO." And, multiple reasons to do so. It would grab attention. It would encourage a chuckle. It would add people to the package — and yes, folks, even in our digital-first world, people still want to look at people (cue Barbra). And what about the sidekick? Think of the fun the art director could have had with that!

Essentially, the office hero needing a sidekick is an idea whose time never came. RIP concept, RIP.

In this time of grief, the Bs at B Direct must give the piece a deeply disappointed thumbs down.

Sorry for your loss.


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