McCormick Armstrong has two USPS certified Mail Managers to help you get through the myriad of obstacles that tend to keep you from understanding the new postal regulations. Some think you need a PHD from MIT, Stanford or Wichita State to understand the complexities of these regulations. The key is knowing how to maximize the ROI by taking advantage of keeping in compliance with automated rates. At McCormick Armstrong, we will keep you out of harm’s way and on the path of mailing it correctly.
Direct mail is a powerful medium. A personalized mailer connected with a PURL speaks directly to your customer and drives strong response rates. Even with the new postal rates effective January 27, 2013 and regulations effective January 6, 2013, direct mail remains a flexible and inexpensive way to physically place your message in your customers’ hands.
Key changes may affect your direct mail campaigns.
• The single-piece postcard rate, which already increased by 3¢ in January 2012, will increase by an additional penny to 33¢.
• Automation discounts will be limited to letters, flats, postcards, Business Reply Mail and Permit Reply Mail with the Intelligent Mail barcode (IMb). The new barcode holds all routing, sorting and additional services in one place, freeing up valuable space on your envelope for your marketing message. Automated address correction will ensure that your material reaches the right recipient at the right time, improving response rates and increasing revenue.
• Self-mailers are subject to new requirements for size, paper weight, folding and tabbing. Failure to comply will result in a significant postage increase. This is a major change. Some of the key points to consider when determining if a mailpeiece will be automation compatible:
o Maximum Size- 6”X10.5”
o Maximum Weight-3 ounces
o Tabbing-mail pieces up to 1 ounce need 2-1” non perforated tab and mail pieces over 1 ounce need 2-1.5” non perforated tabs
o Lean Release Glue-up to 1 ounce need 3-3/8” glue spots and over 1 ounce need 4-3/8” glue spots
o Stock weight-mail pieces up to 1 ounce require 10# book weight minimum and over 1 ounce requires 80# gook weight minimum
o Final Fold-if the final fold is horizontal it must be at the bottom
o There are many other nuances to that can and can’t be done, but the above covers the basic changes
There are several steps you can take to control the impact of the postal changes.
• Merge and purge your mailing lists to ensure clean data. Target customers who will buy.
• Review your existing stock of printed materials for compliance with new regulations before your next mailing to avoid any surprises when you receive your postage bill.
• Reduce the size and/or weight of your direct mail package. For example, instead of mailing an 8½” x 11″ piece at the “flats” rate, fold the piece to 5½” x 8½” to qualify for the lower letter rate.
• Creatively embrace the changes. Develop a multi-touch strategy by using the tracking function in the new IMb to trigger email blasts. Modify and test different formats that comply with the new regulations.
• Review the calendar of promotional events at www.usps.com to learn how you can save on postage throughout 2013 by integrating mail with mobile and emerging technologies.
If you have questions about how the new rates and regulations will impact your business, or would like to have a PDF copy of the USPS new guides, call us at 3216-264-1363 or email us today at email@example.com. We can help you design your mail piece, choose the correct paper stock, and prepare your mailing to meet the revised standards and secure the lowest postage rates available. Visit us at our website www.mccormickarmstrong.com