December 17, 2014

Postage Costs are Going Up – Do You Know What That Means?

mail direct to customersOn May 11, 2009 the cost of postage is going up here in the United States.  A first class letter goes up from 42 to 44 cents.  A postcard goes up from 27 cents to 28 cents.

This may not sound like a lot of money.  However, if you are sending out thousands of mailers, and you do it regularly, the cost adds up fast.

What to do about it?  Get smarter about about your direct marketing.

Over at the Small Business Marketing Guide, a new blog for do-it-yourself marketing strategies, I wrote some tips for how to do direct marketing without spending a fortune.  These days it’s about targeting your efforts — think laser beam instead of buckshot.  It also is about building a quality list — not necessarily a huge list, but one that is very targeted and receptive to you.  Here are a few of the specific tips for how to be smarter and better at direct marketing:

  • Build Digital Flypaper. Create a landing page and some free tips and treats for your ideal customers to feast on. Have this ready BEFORE you start attracting your list. For added targeting and punch, create different pages for different groups so that prospects can segment and profile themselves as they grab your goodies. For free landing page templates, Invesp Consulting has two you can download. Or go for a custom landing page.
  • Go friend hunting. Identify where your ideal customer hangs out both in real life and digitally. This could be social sites such as Twitter.com and Facebook. It could be a popular blog. It could be a popular coffee house. Whatever it is, go there and interact with them. Your objective is to build credibility and show that you are worth “following” and listening to.

It’s a fairly detailed and lengthy article — and I got some input on it from an expert, Ivana Taylor of DIY Marketers. So check it out — and add your 2 cents … er whatever.

Read:  The Savvy DIY Marketer’s Guide to a High Response Direct Marketing Campaign.

12 Comments ▼

Anita Campbell - CEO


Anita Campbell Anita Campbell is the Founder and Publisher of Small Business Trends and has been following trends in small businesses since 2003. She is the owner of BizSugar, a social media site for small businesses, and also serves as CEO of TweakYourBiz.com.

12 Reactions

  1. Funny description of a welcome page for potential customers: “Build Digital Flypaper”. Customers are like flies?! ;)

    Good tips!

    If you will continue to send out regular snail mail, how about doing it with a twist? If you want to spread the good word, buy an EGO stamp and send it to a customer! :) You could get your own stamps at Zazzle.

    I wonder when they will start privatize the U.S. Postal Service? ;)

  2. Martin,

    What will happen if US Postal Service will be privatize?

  3. Maybe becoming more competitive and service minded? Is it true that USPS is “owning” your mailbox for the delivery of mail? http://gufohj.notlong.com

    The Swedish and Danish post offices are merging together. http://wuniem.notlong.com

  4. Rose,

    I sent you a note on your site with links. My comment is awaiting moderation.

    Maybe becoming more competitive and service minded? Is it true that USPS is “owning” your mailbox for the delivery of mail?

    The Swedish and Danish post offices are merging together.

  5. Thanks for the link for free landing page templates… Who needs postal services for direct marketing? Digital customer communication is a must… and most of all: lovely green ;-)

  6. Hi Martin,

    Yes, it’s a violation of Federal law here in the U.S. for anyone to tamper with anything in a mailbox (steal anything from it or even put something in it like a political flyer).

    Zazzle is pretty interesting. It would be especially fun for sending Christmas cards out.

    Anita

  7. The link for custom landing pages is broken. To many ‘.’ after HP.

    Interesting article. I will use this info for creating a better landing page. Thanks.

  8. Anita,

    Could this law be a reason for why the different courier services started, e.g., FedEx and UPS?

    Yes, it could fun to send out a seasonal greeting with your own stamp. I am sure that a whole chain of people will see your stamp through the distribution chain.

  9. Great tips. Do you think that USPS is pricing themselves right out of the market? I mean, what do they think people are going to do if they keep raising fees? They’re going to look for cheaper alternatives.

  10. Good article and tips. Perhaps one other tip which may sound obvious – understand your customer’s emotional needs as it is then easier to communicate with them whether it is DM or something else.

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