In early October, the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) announced price changes scheduled to take effect January 24, 2021. These will raise First-Class Mail rates by 1.8% and other types by about 1.5%.
First-Class mail commercial prices saw increases ranging from 2.1% for AADC automation letters and 2.5% for mixed AADC automation letters to 7.9% for mixed ADC automation flats 2 oz. Marketing mail, which is the number one mail class for direct mail, saw an overall increase of 1.5%. Saturation letters and flats saw no change, while letter prices were raised 0.8%. High density letters experienced a 5.4% increase, while both flats and high density flats were raised 3.6%. The carrier route flats price rose 3.5%, while parcels saw the highest hike at 16.8%.
Nonprofit letter and flat prices are seeing increases of just a few cents. The Nonprofit Times reports nonprofit regular automation flats will see an increase up to 9%, while other nonprofit regular automation category rates will drop 5% to 7%. It also mentioned 14 subcategories of the nonprofit regular nonautomation category will see decreases between 0.2% and 31%.
Even though these increases are set to take effect, direct mail is still one of the most effective ways to get your marketing message across to consumers. Contact a Design Distributors representative to learn how to take advantage of direct mail’s high response rates and ROI today.
What does this mean for companies looking to utilize direct mail to enhance their marketing campaigns?
“The governors believe these new rates will keep the Postal Service competitive while providing the agency with needed revenue,” states its official 2021 price announcement.
These additional revenues can help the post office recover from its financial hardships, which have been worsened by the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. The agency’s request for $25 billion from the federal government as part of a second, pending COVID-19 relief bill was denied. In addition to signed petitions, and sales of stamps and other post office merchandise, its new pricing structure may help abate some of the agency’s losses.
With these increases in mind, how should you develop your next campaign? Here are a few tips for creating a cost-effective plan:
Set Your Budget
Determine the amount your company can allocate to a direct mail campaign. Set aside a portion of your budget for this marketing channel, because direct mail is thriving. To figure out your budget, you’ll want to take great care in planning your campaign.
Spend Time Planning Up Front
Dedicate time to understanding the segments you’re trying to reach, and carefully review your contact list. Set your SMART goals, segment your contacts, and perform an RFM analysis. Decide if you can utilize a house list or need to purchase or rent a prospect list. By targeting the right consumers or businesses, you’ll save time and money.
Decide Who Will Produce Your Campaign
One of the most important decisions you’ll make is choosing the organization that will help you develop your campaign. Design Distributors is a one-stop shop that can produce your campaign, plus provide data processing and mail tracking. These additional services can ensure contact list accuracy, resulting in minimal errors and undeliverable addresses, so you’re only spending your money on deliverable contacts. Partnering with an experienced direct mailer such as Design Distributors can also get you promotional discounts, reduced shipping prices, and other deals that can decrease the overall cost.
Use Modern Tech to Increase Response Rates
State-of-the-art printing technology such as the HP PageWide Web Press T240 HD can add a personal flair to each piece of direct mail, leading to massive response rate increases. A greater number of responses means money well spent.
Test & Track
Review previous campaign analytics to determine the design and offer that will bring the most success. Test a portion of the campaign before sending it out to the entire list to check its effectiveness.