Why Use the Least Expensive Mail Possible?

April 2, 2012 Gary Ritkes

The United States Postal Service (USPS) recently released a new product, Every Door Direct Mail, which now makes it very affordable for small businesses to get back into the direct mail game. Essentially, the mail cost is about half the price of Standard Class (better known as Bulk Mail), coming in at a price per piece of $.147. The difference from First Class is about 1/3 the cost of a normal $.45 stamp. Those are HUGE savings if this service fits the right type of marketing program. Ahhhhh, that is the only key here, the right fit. Let me explain why......

If you are a small business and you are trying to reach every household in a given area, then this program is best for you. It allows you to select geographic areas right down to the route each postal carrier delivers to. The catch is that you must mail to every mailbox in each route you choose. Nothing wrong with that. This type of program is ideal for many customers like restaurants, banks, dry cleaners, etc.

You get the drift? It’s best for businesses that want to reach everyone. It is not ideal for businesses that have a very targeted type of client. For instance, travel agents trying sell very expensive cruises want to reach older, high net worth avid travelers. In this instance, you are better served going with much smaller quantities and highly targeting those existing or potential customers.

Another great use for this product is for Grand Openings, and Special Events. An additional industry that’s increasing product adoption is real estate. This is a great way to promote to all houses for things like Just Listed / Just Sold. By targeting every address in a specific zip code or carrier route, you bypass having to purchase a mailing list as well as costs associated with printing those addresses on the mailer. Great costs savings for the local business.

The USPS makes it really easy to research your area with their on line carrier route tool. It even generates and prints the appropriate documentation to take with your mailing to the post office. The only downside is that you have to take the mail to your local post office yourself. Unless you work with an organization that will do that for you. And most times, if you are doing small local mailings, there will probably be a small charge associated with your local printer/mailer for the handling and delivery, taking the total cost per piece up very slightly, about half a penny.

You will continue to see greater adoption in the use of this product, and I applaud the USPS for bringing this to market. It is great for the customers and the consumers. It is nice to see a win-win! Go U.S. Postal Service!!!

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About the Author

Gary Ritkes

Gary Ritkes oversees all Business Development and Marketing at SproutLoud. He has been a pioneer in the emerging vertical of Distributed Marketing Technology and is an industry leader and innovator with 20+ years experience in graphic communications and marketing strategy. Gary has been involved with SproutLoud since the inception of the company. Prior to joining SproutLoud, Gary was VP of Marketing for Rex Three, Inc., SproutLoud’s first and largest vendor among its network of providers. He has served many Fortune 1000 clients and worldwide advertising agencies in providing marketing technology direction and optimization. He was an original founder of U.S. based Earth Color Group and a co-founder of Advanced Digital Services (ADS) which was sold in 1996 to publicly traded Katz Digital Technologies. He is a current board member of the local Advertising Federation chapter and has served as a member for other national industry associations including the DMA, AGA, and the CMO council.

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