Then along came some aesthetically pleasing, vintage Chris Barraclough (the chairman of BEC).
This fulfilment pack for the British Heart Foundation (BHF) includes a colour-coded tape measure to warn you whether your tummy is in the cardiac danger zone; guides to your five-a-day intake; and a booklet of practical lifestyle advice and information on the major issues relating to the condition.
It achieves what so many charities do not by demonstrating its value to the community before it ventures to ask for money.
The piece's title, 'Heart matters', works on two levels, but both do exactly what they say on the tin - and the simple, pithy copy deals with a range of issues in admirable depth, rather than skating over the facts.
Best of all is the execution: short, simple, but effective data capture on a one-piece mailer, with relevant questions allowing emails to be tailored to specific conditions.
I'm sure this will meet the key BHF objectives while engaging with potential donors and supporters. It is a great piece of work that has restored my faith in charity comms - no mean feat.