The benefits of interactive direct mail are even greater in 2020, especially as the United States Postal Service (USPS) prepares to increase postage rates in the new year.
Your holiday mailers and postcards should be hitting mailboxes with last-minute incentives and offers this week. We’re not only in one of the busiest shopping periods of the season, but the end of the calendar year. This is a momentous time for consumers and for businesses, many of whom leverage direct mail to meet their end-of-year sales goals.
The USPS is also gearing up for changes in the new year, including its annual postage rate adjustments. Like the cyclical rush of holiday spending, you’ve likely become accustomed to the USPS’s yearly increases, which will take effect on January 26, 2020.
Despite the expected 1.9% rise in costs, there are ways for marketers to combat higher rates in 2020. Thanks to advancements in direct mail methods — and the USPS’s incentive program — you can incorporate the latest technology into your mail pieces to further integrate your marketing and save money.
Here’s what you can expect, when you need to sign up, and how to realize the benefits of interactive direct mail with a partner like BlueWing Hearing.
Tactile, Sensory, & Interactive Mailpiece Engagement Promotion (February 1 to July 31)
We’ve talked about the importance of personalizing your digital and direct marketing, but let’s take it a step further. Consumers love to see their name and other relevant information included on an envelope; it creates a positive impression of a brand and has shown to effectively impact a business’s revenue.
Imagine if that envelope was more than just an envelope. What if someone could scratch-and-sniff a portion of the paper? Hear a song upon tearing open the flap? These multi-sensory experiences enhance how consumers interact with direct mail, making each piece more memorable and noteworthy than the static envelopes in their stack of mail.
The USPS is encouraging businesses to meld the advancements in print technology with the physical characteristics of direct mail by offering a 2% discount on eligible postage.
Emerging & Advanced Technology Promotion (March 1 to August 31)
In addition to incentives for physical mail adjustments, the USPS is rewarding businesses who integrate more digital experiences into their pieces with a 2% discount. These include the addition of:
- “Enhanced” Augmented Reality
- Virtual Reality and Mixed Reality
- Near Field Communication (NFC)
- Video in Print (ViP) featuring Shoppable Video
- Integration with Digital Assistants
- Addressable TV technology
A new wave of technology is making mail pieces smarter, more intuitive, and more in touch with the needs of today’s plugged-in consumers. Whether it’s adding video or an NFC chip to the outside of an envelope, these methods further streamline the connection between the physical world and your customer’s digital footprint.
Other USPS Promotions
For those businesses who want to make their direct mail more interactive, the USPS is offering additional 2% discounts on postage for other qualifying pieces of mail. If you’ve been waiting for the right opportunity to enroll in Informed Delivery or invest in dynamic variable printing, now is the perfect time to make the jump.
The USPS recognizes that direct mail is evolving. While stamps and envelopes still encapsulate the postal service marketplace, new technologies that further integrate your online and offline marketing efforts are becoming a necessity, not a luxury.
If you’d like to realize the benefits of interactive direct mail in 2020, head over to the BlueWing Hearing website to learn more.