Is direct mail a part of your integrated marketing strategy? If so, do you maintain your own mailing lists and mail your direct mail pieces yourself thinking you’re saving your company big money?
Well, think again.
According to the USPS, over 40 million Americans change their addresses annually, which makes maintaining a high-quality mailing list a near impossibility. In fact, the Mailers Technical Advisory Committee (MTAC) reports that Undeliverable-as-Addressed (UAA) mail costs the United States Postal Service approximately $2 billion each year.
Too many small businesses shy away from data management practices, usually because they don’t think they’re big enough and/or they don’t know how to get started. The truth is, small companies can benefit greatly from keeping their customer data clean. Implementing some simple controls¾like checking addresses against the National Change of Address database (NCOA) and making sure there are no errors in content or address formatting¾can ensure ongoing data quality.
If these activities sound daunting to you, consider outsourcing this task to a mailing services provider to maintain your lists. Oftentimes, mailing services can actually save you more money than if you tried to do it all yourself. Not only can a mailing provider ensure the data you are working with is as clean as possible, they can save you money by improving deliverability and maximizing postal discounts to help you mail at the lowest possible rates with the fewest possible UAA mail pieces. This not only saves you money, it protects the environment by reducing paper waste.
So the next time you’re getting ready for a big mailing, give outsourcing a try. You might just be pleasantly surprised.