Crafting a Memorable Invitation

stack of invitations

Over the centuries, they’ve arrived via the USPS, the Pony Express, and the couriers of international royalty. One acted as the plot shift in Cinderella; another, the catalyst for thawing relations between rival nations. Their name? Invitations. And crafting a memorable one is more of an art than a science. But it’s an art worth investing in.

Your Only Shot at a First Impression

An event invitation is your chance to make a first impression–your only first impression. As such, the concept shouldn’t be taken lightly. This is your opportunity to establish a vision, to communicate the level of importance or exclusivity, and set expectations for your big event.

Make it About Them, Not You

Wedding invitation cards

Think of the last invitation you declined or ignored. How would you describe it? Chances are, you perceived two things. First, that the net was cast widely and your presence wasn’t very important. And second, that the event wasn’t very relevant to you. Effective invitations combat both of these conceptions. First, they communicate the authentic desire to have you in attendance. And second, they connect the invitee with the purpose in a relevant way. Here’s an example: “In honor of your decades of service to the city of Boston, you’re invited to an evening of the city’s most impactful philanthropists.” Such an invitation answers two questions: why you, and why this.

Think Outside the Box

Masterfully executing on current trends is a high bar. In 2018, that would entail finding a lettering artist to scroll in modern calligraphy, perhaps inside a wreath of watercolor flowers. When you take the status quo approach, the only way to stand out is to execute better than anyone else. It’s not easy. So why not do something different? Perhaps your invitation comes in the mail attached to a frisbee, is delivered to the recipient on a cake, or simply comes packaged in a tube instead of an envelope. To truly impress, forget comparison and go with creativity.

Delivery Can Be Everything

How an invitation is delivered can make or break the invitation itself. On the negative end, imagine an invitation returned to sender for having the wrong address or arriving with a misspelled name. All the care put into selecting the paper stock, designing the graphics, and writing the copy will be in vain if the delivery is botched. A few ways to make your delivery process stand out: take care in selecting your stamps. The USPS has a slew of different designs, and any stamps in mint condition are “legal tender” for mailing. What does that mean? A collection of vintage stamps could be your opportunity to catch eyes at the mailbox.

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