As I’ve read the responses (more correctly, the “outrage”) from the direct mail industry to the proposed USPS postage rate increase, I try to put myself in their situation.
I would be frustrated too. Like them, I would cut back on mailings, like them I would think about putting more effort and resources into the Internet (email, blogging, social media, Twitter, etc.), mobile, and so forth. However, I would also ask, “What alternative options do I have to physically place my offer in their hands?”
Bill stuffers would be one consideration; a co-marketing piece (that is, two complementary produces from different companies sharing a mailing and splitting the cost) would be another. There might also be some creative co-branding options as well.
But perhaps the biggest and best option to consider would be to shift some direct mail dollars to print advertising. Let the publication worry about rising postage costs and list management. If the right publication is selected, the desired target audience could still be reached, but at a lower cost.
Print advertising isn’t the answer for everyone or every situation, but it is worth giving it a serious look. Perhaps it is more effective and cost-effective than other options, deserving a fresh consideration.
It’s something to think about.
Peter Lyle DeHaan, PhD, is publisher, editor, author, and blogger with 30 years of writing and publishing experience. Check out his book The Successful Author for tips and insights.