USPS’s Digital Mail Program Will Go Nationwide in 2017
Some exciting things are happening at the United States Postal Service that could change your opinion of direct mail forever. USPS currently offers a free service called informed delivery (ID), a service that will soon be upgraded and greatly benefits those who engage in direct mail. As of right now, the (ID) service sends mail recipients visual notifications of what is waiting for them in their mailbox each day. During the process, pictures are taken of each piece of mail so that they can be properly sorted for delivery. Physical addresses can then be connected to corresponding emails notifying the residents of any mail being sent to their address.
Although this service is extremely helpful for those who take advantage of it, there are some limitations as to what USPS can provide with this current system. According to DM News’ article “USPS’s Digital Mail Program Will Go Nationwide in 2017” there will be some major adjustments to this delivery system. Some of these improvements include; full-color photos, photos for packages, and photos for all other advertising pieces. The goal is for USPS to be able to capture ALL mail pieces, catalogs, and packages in the form of a picture to the resident prior to delivery. USPS intends for this process to be in full color and to display exactly what will be waiting in the resident’s mailbox. Not only is this service great for mail recipients, but also great for those who intend to use direct mail as a source of marketing.
What does this mean for direct mail marketing? The short answer, it may become very desirable to businesses. Ultimately, it becomes a 2 in 1 deal. Send direct mail and get a type of email marketing. Before this feature, those who wanted to use direct mail would send a mail piece in hopes that someone would see it. Of those that would see the mail piece, a fraction of them would respond. This new initiative for Informed Delivery may increase the response rate of direct mail because an email will be sent to the resident along with the tangible piece of mail. Therefore, the resident has an opportunity of seeing the mail piece twice. In turn, this potentially doubles the chances of them seeing the piece and relating it to their needs!
In theory, the update to the current USPS system sounds great, but only time will tell if it will truly have an impact on the responsiveness of consumers through direct mail.
Review by: Tyson Knowles