Blazing Boundaries: A Retailer’s Effective Print Marketing Strategy

Blazing Boundaries: A Retailer’s Effective Print Marketing Strategy

With the retail industry becoming ever more competitive, how do you blaze your own trail and come out on top? If you’re Nicole Chose, owner and marketing director of The Foursome and Boundary Clothing, you use print to create a new landscape. With direct mail campaigns, storefront signage and personalized engagement, Chose’s effective print marketing strategy ensures her specialty outdoor activewear store stands out.

A marketing banner rolled up on one side with boundary clothing in black text on a green background.

Hanging Banner: 18 oz Smooth Vinyl – Opaque Matte, Nickel Grommets in all 4 corners, 96 x 40″

Take It Outside

Founded in 1935, The Foursome offers classic menswear in Plymouth, MN. Evolving with the times yet staying true to its tailored roots, this third-generation family-owned business branched out with Boundary Clothing in the fall of 2020.


With a new retail space to promote, Chose spread the word with outdoor signage like Hanging Banners. “Our store is located on a busy corner,” Chose said. “We have one out by the road and another as a temporary sign on the building until our permanent sign is ready to be installed.”


Online printing makes it easy to create custom banners and effective print marketing with any message you like. Try Chose’s tactic and keep it simple with your brand name and logo. Then take advantage of Smartpress’ design options like vinyl or mesh material and all the hanging hardware you need, from grommets and ball bungees to pole pockets and wooden dowels.

Two product catalogs standing with a saddle stitch binding and boundary clothing on the cover.

Direct Mail Booklet: 100# Coated Gloss White Cover with 100# Text Coated Matte White Interior Pages, Flat Matte UV Coating on Cover, 5.75 x 8.75″

A custom marketing mailer laying open with images of a man in a navy winter coat and two people in sweaters and hats.

Recreation Runway

Daring customers to “venture there and here,” Boundary Clothing showcases brands that embrace the great outdoors. And with tops, bottoms and shoes fit for chasing your kids around the house or following the sun on a hike, Chose’s Style Guide advertises all that activity in a Direct Mail Saddle Stitch Booklet she sends directly to customers.


“The booklet gives us a way to feature our store’s brands,” said Chose. “The result is a great piece we send out to both new and existing customers to provide inspiration for each season. We love the opportunity to help our clients walk out the door feeling confident and looking great.”


Booklet printing like Chose’s creates a customer experience like no other. With imagery evoking wanderlust and the energy of the natural elements, it’s profitable communication. For effective print marketing, let the content do the talking and be intentional with your design by experimenting with custom book printing options like recycled stocks, cover weights, full-color inks and UV coatings.

Two direct mailers with a man and He Gets Dressed on the front and a mailing address on the back.

Direct Mail Postcard: C2S 14pt with Flat Matte UV Coating on Front, 5.5 x 8.5″

Straight Line to Success

Perhaps the biggest mountain to climb for small businesses and specialty shops like Boundary Clothing is direct mail marketing. With Direct Mail Postcards and Style Guide product catalogs, Chose’s direct mail campaigns aim for “clear and concise messaging with eye-catching appeal.”


“Direct Mail Postcards have always been our store’s most effective way to promote sales and events, even in today’s age of email and social media,” Chose said. “We see and track direct results of increased visits to our store when we send a postcard.”

Smartpress’ Direct Mail capabilities know no bounds, with complete fulfillment services like list acquisition, list processing, addressing and mailing. From booklet binding options to perforation for tear-off coupons, our custom features let you design direct mailings to suit your goals and your budget.


“Smartpress gives us the ability to send small or large runs with a smooth upload and proofing process and representatives will chat and answer questions along the way,” said Chose. “This attention to detail is something I value when working with a printer.”

A collage of scattered custom inserts with The Foursome Fine Menswear in black text.

Card: 80# Uncoated Smooth Natural Cover, 13 versions, 4.25 x 5.5″

Two direct mail cards overlapping each other with The Foursome and a red, blue and white design.

Self-Mailer: C2S 12pt with perforation on the fold, flat matte UV coating on cover, 5.5 x 8.5″ folded to 5.5 x 4.25″

More Than Marketing

While the bottom line is crucial for Chose, so too is the relationship with her customers. To turn first-time shoppers into repeat guests, Chose personalized note cards with Smartpress’ Versions feature. (Hint: Just design Cards without the fold.) Versions lets you print various designs with the same size, stock and finish to vary content on multiple cards.


“Personally connecting with customers is a top priority for us,” said Chose. “We send a lot of handwritten notes [and] being able to print note card variations with each owner or sales associate’s name saves time and makes them more personal.”

Chose also employed Variable Data Printing for Boundary Clothing’s rewards program. VDP lets Chose add individual customer information to the same Folded Self-Mailer that’s sent to everyone.


“We offer a reward based on purchases, which is sent out twice [a] year,” Chose said. “Smartpress allows us to easily personalize these rewards with their name, customer ID and reward amount in a convenient perforated card that can be brought into the store and redeemed.”


Design Tip: Use Versions to create projects with different designs or content but the same printing specs (like Business Cards for Boundary Clothing employees). Use VDP to personalize projects for individual recipients. Just provide a list and we’ll do the rest.

Branded print marketing for Boundary Clothing, including catalogs, direct mail postcards and loyalty program cards.


Going the Distance

For a brand that values outdoor time over screen time, it’s no wonder Boundary Clothing uses print marketing in smart, strategic ways. Of course they have an online and social presence, but Chose has seen direct returns with print.


“Direct mail and printed materials allow us to communicate directly with our customers with call-to-action promotions and events,” she said. “Clients love receiving the Style Guide each season and often come in for the specific looks they’ve seen.”

And with an online printer like Smartpress, Chose’s marketing pieces result in the needed sales and desired impact.


“The quality is great,” said Chose. “These [print] materials help us be personal and connect with people in a virtual world that is feeling more and more impersonal.”


Hint: See how other businesses create their own effective print marketing:

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