It’s getting close to the election, and we’re starting our leaflet design process. The Royal Mail send out a free leaflet, as I discovered last year, but now we need to actually get them made.
I called up the Royal Mail candidate mailing department this morning, and spoke to a very helpful chap to confirm all the deadlines, etc. This is my calendar, working backwards:
24 April: Deadline for delivery of unaddressed leaflets to the local Royal Mail dropoff point.
17 April: Allowing a week for printing, we need to have final artwork with the printer by the 17th.
14 April: As the Royal Mail artwork vetting service take 48 hours to verify that the leaflet conforms to the right laws, this is the drop-dead date for getting it to them for checking. They said this things would be quietening down at this point, as most people will have done it already. Once they’ve vetted it, you get a verification number and the details of the local contact to arrange the dropoff appointment.
12 April: My aim for final artwork. I’d rather have a couple of days of contingency.
5 April: My target for a first draft, which we can run by the art department to make sure we’re not doing anything obviously terrible. Oh my god, that’s only 6 days away.
Hopefully, we won’t get it wrong, as the Royal Mail have sent me a very useful guidance document for candidate mailings, which you can also download from their website.
One thing is, don’t assume that the dropoff point is your local sorting office. Mine (for Horsham) is in Crawley, just up the road, but that’s also the dropoff point for Hove, Brighton, and seemingly most of Sussex. You might have a decent distance to travel to your dropoff point, so make sure you check the list!
There are 4 things that must be on the leaflet:
- It must say “Election Communication” on the front, in at least 10 point text.
- It must have the name of the candidate or party on the front.
- It must have the name of the constituency on the front.
- It must have the imprint (which is the name and address of the promoter, party, and printer) on the front or back.
If we do those, and don’t insult any of the other candidates, I think we’ll be OK.
If you want to help make the best election leaflet you’ve ever seen, get in touch and join our creative team. We’ve got a lot to do in a short time, so all help is appreciated!