With so many postal services to choose from, it can be difficult to decide on the best way to mail your marketing campaign. Here’s how to optimise your approach to postage to get the best results… and some thoughts from our Managing Director, Lance Hill on the future of the postal industry.
When it comes to postage, it’s easy to become overwhelmed by the options available to you. But here at Eight Days A Week Print Solutions, we’ll be on hand to clear up any confusion and advise you on the best way forward so you benefit from cost savings, postal discounts and a greater return on your investment.
How to optimise your postage
Postal costs can make make or break a marketing campaign. But, with our inside-out knowledge of the sector, plus our industry partnerships and printing expertise, we’ll help you optimise your mailing to bring down costs and increase engagement.
If you come to us with a campaign, the main things we’ll look at are:
This is a big one. By analysing your data in the early stages of project planning, we’ll help tidy up your audience records, removing ‘dead end’ contacts like duplicates and ‘goneaway’ or deceased records, which will automatically give you an improved return.
It’s best practice that all mailings should include an option to unsubscribe. By removing out-of-date or disengaged audience members, your response rate will increase and your ROI will gradually rise.
We can also help with customer profiling, grouping your audience according to relevant demographics and habits. By gaining a better understanding of their needs and preferences, you’ll be able to tailor messaging towards them, personalising your approach and leading to higher interactions.
Unsorted mail can slow things down. By partially sorting mailing address data and cutting down the processing time before sharing your campaign with a postage provider like Royal Mail or Citipost, we can help you to make cost savings. And, because your mailer needs less processing, the sorted mail will be fed into the postal further down the line by downstream access providers like Citipost and Whistl, making for a faster delivery.
Your printing format
Before you start artworking your next mailer, let us advise on the most cost-effective printing formats. It may be that a smaller sized or different shaped campaign will see you qualify for cheaper postage or a Royal Mail discount. We can also help you to maximise the available space for messaging, so you make the biggest impact possible while conforming to official guidelines around address readability and postage marks.Take a look at our print services
The easier your mail is to process, the cheaper it’ll be to send. By adding a Royal Mail Mailmark® barcode to the front, you’ll make it simpler for machines to read and process. When scanned, a Mailmark® provides unique information about each piece of mail, including the postal service being used, address details and all the key players in the supply chain.
What’s more, the barcode allows us to monitor where your mail is in the network, so we’re aware of any delays and can tell when it’s likely to arrive or has been delivered. Mailmark® reporting tools also make it easier to analyse campaign performance stats to improve future mailings.
Until recently, if our customers were able to add FSC and recycling logos to their printed mailings, they were automatically eligible for various Royal Mail discounts. While these incentives have now been withdrawn, new opportunities are announced on a regular basis and we can advise you if this happens again.
It’s still worth pursuing sustainable print options however, as recyclability optimises the customer experience and adds to your brand value.
Got your campaign ready and can’t wait to get the mail bags picked up? Hold your horses! Using our knowledge of consumer habits and recent data we can advise on optimal dispatch and delivery times, to improve the impact of your mailer when it lands. For example, if we know a particular audience is less inclined to read mail on a Monday, we can plan delivery for a different day when, statistically, they are more likely to take their time over it.
Alternative postage options
As well as strategically planning the format and timing of your mailer, there are a whole host of other ways we can improve the performance of your next marketing campaign, including:
Sending mail overseas can seem daunting but we work with Royal Mail and other suppliers to see your communications land anywhere in the world, offering advice on customs and VAT charges.
Special postage classes
Charity or not-for-profit? You may be able to maximise your postage budget by claiming back VAT or qualifying for an alternative to standard mailing rates.
By opting into JICMAIL, the industry body responsible for direct mail, you’ll benefit from improved trackability. And, by feeding into these national statistics, we’ll be better placed to improve your future mailings.Talk to our postage experts
Why use Eight Days for your mailing campaign?
Whether you’re looking to send something Special Delivery or make your next Advertising Mail campaign a big success, our experts can help.
As Citipost and Royal Mail Premier Partners we’re able to suggest postal discounts and clever ways to reduce your mailing costs, none of which will compromise on quality. Our in-house fulfilment service covers everything from print to distribution, so there’s no need to go anywhere else to bring your campaign to print. Direct mail, leaflet distribution, multi-channel marketing, Business Mail…whatever your project, we can cover every step of the process for you!
Ever wondered if sending post is worth the effort?
Our Managing Director, Lance Hill explains why post certainly isn’t dead and shares his views on the way the industry is going.
“The Universal Service Obligation (USO) currently states that Royal Mail have to be able to deliver to every UK address 6 days a week, Monday to Saturday. This is a regulation that they are currently hamstrung by, in my opinion. Without reform, I don’t see how Royal Mail can continue to operate a sustainable and profitable business – it’s just too expensive because of the enormous overheads they have, mostly in staff costs.
So when we think about the future of post, I have to ask: do we really need post 6 days a week? Do we currently get letters 6 days a week? For me, the answer to both questions is a resounding ‘no’. If we were to move to a 3 or 4 day a week service on alternative days, reducing the number of times they walk up a garden path, Royal Mail would be able operate much more efficiently. The big sticking points are politicians and unions.
The USO aside, well-targeted and well-designed mail is still in rude health. One of the upsides to having less mail through our letterboxes means that, when it does land, it gets more attention. In fact, each piece of direct mail is engaged with an average of 4.2 times once it reaches a customer’s home!
These days ‘junk mail’ is a term more frequently reserved for email, something we all get far too much of, and most of which is swiftly deleted. But who doesn’t open a letter? According to the statistics, not many of us.
So, while the future of post will, by necessity, be about change and transformation as consumer and business needs change, rest assured, it’s a service that is very much here to stay.”