Start now to prepare for rate increases affecting direct mail

Proposed increases in USPS mail rates, scheduled to go into effect in early 2007, signal big changes for direct marketing. It’s not too soon to get ready.

The proposed increase for standard mail (direct mail advertising) is a whopping 9 percent. Coming right on the heels of the 5.4 percent increase in January, this could be a real budget buster. The Direct Mail Marketing Association is predicting that business and nonprofit mailers will cut back on direct mail and find less expensive ways to communicate. Industry analysts at Direct Marketing News expect increasing postal rates will drive many companies toward email.

We strongly recommend that mailers start immediately to re-think their direct marketing strategies in light of the likely 2007 rate increase.

In our view, the rate increase is by no means the end of direct mail, simply because direct mail is far too effective. But the impending rate increase makes it imperative that you closely scrutinize your current portfolio of mail lists, email lists, and direct mail services. Rather than reduce frequency of mailings (frequency being a key factor to the success of many campaigns), take steps to make the lists themselves work harder. Focus your lists using selects and appends and then test those lists. Marigold can work with you to develop lists customized to match your campaign’s objectives.

If you have not yet explored email, or need to expand a basic email program, now is certainly the time to do it. Marigold provides CAN-SPAM compliant email brokerage services that begin with matching your direct marketing needs to fresh lists. If you’re new to email marketing, we can help you get started the right way, with pre-qualified email addresses for campaigns that meet ethical and legal guidelines for email marketing.

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