How Does Direct Mail Work?

If direct mail is new to your marketing strategy, you probably have a few questions about the best way to deliver your finished mail pieces to their intended recipients. How significant are bulk discounts? What is presorted mail? And how can you easily take advantage of these postal logistics strategies?

The rules and regulations of the USPS can get complicated, but the concepts are pretty straightforward. Companies can save both time and money on larger mailings by participating in the USPS work-share program. The more of the USPS’s work can be done BEFORE the mail is presented to the Post Office, the greater the savings that you will enjoy.

How Does Direct Mail Work? | Weekley's Mailing

In order to take advantage of presorted mail savings, every piece of mail must go through a stringent preparation process before it is ready to be shipped to its destination. The process begins by certifying each address using CASS (Coding Accuracy Support System) software and checking against the NCOA (National Change of Address) database. Letters and cards must meet certain physical specifications to be automation compatible and addresses must include an Intelligent Mail barcode that incorporates a delivery point routing code (and tracking code if you want to follow your mail). The mail is then sorted and bundled depending on its 5-digit or 3-digit zip code, each tray of mail is inserted into a sleeve that wraps around the tray, and the tray is strapped and tagged according to USPS specifications. Proper accompanying documentation is also required.

The USPS rewards you with significant discounts on postage if your presorted mailing is large enough. First-class presorted mail requires 500 pieces, and each piece will be delivered in 1-4 days for less than the price of a regular standard piece. Presorted standard-class requires only 200 pieces and is even more cost-efficient, but the mail may take as many as 10 days to arrive.

While these savings certainly add up, some companies find their expenses increase as well due to the additional labor and technology costs of preparing their mailing. One way to eliminate this additional expense is to work with a professional Mail House. Weekley’s Mailing Service has been preparing mail for postal discounts for 68 years. We would love to work with you on your next project!

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