A collection of interesting facts and figures from the United States Postal Service
- The USPS delivered 146.4 billion pieces of mail in 2018, more than 52% (77.3 billion) was Marketing Mail
- 47% of the world’s mail volume is handled by the USPS
- That’s 484.8 million mailpieces each day
- Shipping/Package volume increased 500 million pieces to 6.2 billion in 2018
- The Postal Service processed 36.8 million change of address requests in 2018, more than 100,000 a day
- The first ‘scratch and sniff’ stamp was released in 2018 as part of the USPS’s Frozen Treats stamps
- The USPS purchased 675,000 tires to support their fleet of vehicles in 2018
- Postal Service employees traveled 1.4 billion miles to deliver your mail
Informed Delivery reaches a new milestone for sign-ups opening new opportunities for mailers
The United States Postal Service recently announced that Informed Delivery has reached the milestone of 15 million subscribers. Informed Delivery is a free service allowing consumers to receive a daily email preview of their incoming mail and manage their packages. Consumers can sign up for the free service at the USPS Informed Delivery website.
What does this mean for marketers using direct mail?
Mailers can now deploy an Interactive Campaign that will integrate their mailpiece with the Informed Delivery email being sent to consumers. The interactive campaign includes custom images and a targeted URL, giving consumers the ability to click through to a landing page or website. The Informed Delivery Interactive Campaign gives mailers an easy pathway to marry their direct mail campaign with a digital component creating an omni-channel option.
The USPS is also offering a 2% discount off postage for mailings incorporating the interactive campaigns. The promotional period runs from September 1st through November 30th. Eligible mail includes Marketing Mail letters and flats, Nonprofit Marketing Mail letters and flats, and First-Class presort & automation letters, cards and flats.
NFocus is here to help you succeed with your Informed Delivery Interactive Campaign.
NFocus can help mailers with every step of creating and deploying interactive campaigns. The NFocus NFormed Delivery full service option includes formatting pre-campaign data and reports, and uploading required elements into USPS Business Customer Gateway for deployment.
We also offer a self-serve option to mailers who would like to manage their campaigns. NFocus can provide the required data elements needed to marry the interactive campaign to the direct mail campaign.
Contact NFocus today to learn how you can take advantage of these opportunities.
Plan your 2019 direct mail schedule with help from our postage calculators
The popular NFocus postage rate calculators have been updated and are ready to download. The new calculators will help guide you through all of the 2019 rate changes for Marketing Mail, Non Profit Marketing Mail, and Periodicals.
The 2019 calculators have been updated with a new look and additional information. Users will notice the new Part Code column which directly corresponds to the price category codes found on your postage statement (form 3602 for Marketing Mail). A new Promotions Calendar has also been added (tab 2) which gives users a quick reference guide to the 2019 USPS promotions.
Download a copy of the NFocus Postage Rate Calculators below:
2019 Postage Rate Calculators
2019 USPS Marketing Mail Rate Calculator
2019 USPS Periodical Mail Rate Calculator
2019 USPS Non Profit Marketing Mail Rate Calculator
Need hep figuring this out? Contact your NFocus rep today. We provide a complete suite of resources to help direct mailers including our NControl report for periodical publishers, 24-7 access to the top direct mail list data with Listcounts, and our powerful Smart Saturation solution for mailers looking for a more targeted list.
Postal news from around the web:
USPS have updated mail.dat requirements for the new year.
The United State Postal Service recently announced that they will only accept mail.dat versions 18.1 or higher in 2019. Versions 17.1 and 17.2 will no longer be supported. As such, NFocus will move to providing mail.dat version 18.1 for all processed jobs by January 1st.
Please contact your Account Manager or Support with any questions or concerns.
The new rates will take effect January 27, 2019.
The Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC) announced today that they approved the United States Postal Service’s planned postage rate adjustments for both Market Dominant and Competitive products.
First-Call Mail rates for 2019:
Select Competitive product rates for 2019:
|Retail Small Flat Rate Box
|Retail Medium Flat Rate Box
|Retail Large Flat Rate Box
|Retail Regular Flat Rate Envelope
An overview of the proposed 2019 USPS promotions and Incentives for mailers.
Each year the United States Postal Service provides several promotions and incentives for mailers to utilize new technology with their direct mail printing and messaging. Promotions focus on specific technologies and are only available for a limited amount of time, usually 3-6 months. The incentive programs are available for both First-Class and Marketing Mail classes.
2019 proposed USPS Promotion and Incentive program
- Tactile, Sensory & Interactive Promotion
- February 1, 2019 – July 31, 2019
- Encourages marketers to incorporate innovative techniques on their mailpieces including specialty paper, specialty ink, and interactive elements.
- Available for Marketing Mail letters and flats, nonprofit Marketing mail letters and flats
- Incentive: 2% discount of eligible postage
- Emerging and Advanced Technology Promotion
- March 1, 2019 – August 31, 2019
- Encourages direct mailers to incorporate advanced technology in their mail campaigns, including augmented reality, virtual reality and mixed reality.
- Available for First-Class presort & auto letters, cards and flats, Marketing Mail letters and flats, nonprofit Marketing Mail letters and flats
- Incentive: 2% discount on eligible postage
- Earned Value Promotion
- April 1, 2019 – June 30, 2019
- Encourages the use of Business Reply Mail and Courtesy Reply Mail to boost First-Class Mail volumes.
- Available for Business Reply Mail, Courtesy Reply Mail and Share Mail cards and letters
- Incentive: $.03 credit
- Personalized Color Transpromo Promotion
- July 1, 2019 – December 31, 2019
- Encourages the mailer of bills and statements to use color messaging.
- Available for First-Class Mail commercial letters with IMb Full-Service
- Incentive: discount of 2% of eligible postage
- Mobile Shopping Promotion
- August 1, 2019 – December 31, 2019
- Encourages the use of technologies to connect direct mail to online shopping, such as QR codes.
- Available for Marketing Mail letters and flats and nonprofit Marketing Mail letters and flats
- Incentive: 2% discount on postage for eligible pieces
- Informed Delivery Promotion
- September 1, 2019 – November 30, 2019
- Encourages mailers to use create Informed Delivery campaigns in conjunction with their direct mail campaign.
- Available for First-Class Mail presort & auto letters, cards and flats, Marketing Mail letters and flats, and nonprofit Marketing Mail letters and flats
- Incentive: Discount of 2% on eligible postage
NFocus is here to help you plan for the 2019 postage rate increases.
October might be the most important month for mailers as the proposed postage rate increases are announced. The overall average proposed increase for Marketing Mail is 2.479% while Periodicals will see a 2.52% increase.
How are rates set?
The United States Postal Service filed their intended rate changes to the Postal Regulatory Commission the 2nd week of October. The PRC has up to 34 days to review the filing. The new rates are set to go into effect Sunday January 27, 2019.
Postage rates are adjusted annually and are based on the Consumer Price Index. This method of rate adjustment was set under the Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act which was signed into law in 2006 by President George W. Bush.
What can you do now?
Now is the time to plan and we are here to help. Our postal experts will examine your mailing and provide you with details on how the new rates may effect your mailing. Even though Marketing Mail is facing a proposed 2.479% overall increase, the percentage increase varies based on multiple factors including drop location and carrier route volumes. We can help you navigate all the details to uncover your individual impact.
What options do you have?
NFocus offers multiple solutions for mailers to help them manage their postage. The NFocus Smart Saturation solution allows marketers to use a highly targeted direct mail list while maintaining specific postage requirements. Mailers who need to maintain full walk sequence saturation on their lists will find ResQue’s powerful route level optimization tools extremely useful.
Contact NFocus today for more information on how the new rates could impact your mailing and help you plan your 2019 mailing strategy.
USPS reviewing rule change to limit Marketing Mail content to only paper-based printed matter.
The United States Postal Service recently announced that it is considering amending the Domestic Mail Manual and revising content standards for Marketing Mail. The proposed change would limit the content of all Marketing Mail to only paper-based/printed matter; no merchandise or goods will be allowed regardless of ‘value’. The rule would affect all categories and classifications from letter to flat, profit or non-profit, and regardless of level or sortation.
The proposed standard would essentially eliminate the option for mailers to include premiums with their mail piece while using the Marketing Mail rates. Nonprofits often include premium items such as notepads, stickers, or medallions in their mail pieces to improve response rates. Mailers would be forced into other mail classifications such as Priority Mail or Parcel Select in order to continue including the premium items if the rule goes into effect.
The USPS has set a deadline of October 22, 2018 for comments for and against the rule change.
Contact your Account Manager with any questions you may have.