2016 USPS Promos Are Coming Soon!

Woman scanning QR code in the catalogIt’s time to plan your participation in the 2016 United States Postal Service promotional programs! These programs change a little every year and offer bulk mailers across a range of industries the opportunity to try new marketing approaches and receive a discount on their mailing costs for doing it.

Get inspired: proposed promos for 2016

Catalog professionals know it’s not just about the discount! Although the 2% average discount might make a dent in mailing costs, which has definite appeal, the real value for catalogers is to launch a new marketing program that they might not otherwise try.

Looking for your next big marketing campaign? Although not every program is right for catalogers, this year’s proposed programs include a range of ways that they can get creative with their mailing campaigns.

  • Mobile promotion — The idea here is similar to last year’s promotion and requires quick response (QR) codes that take users to a mobile-friendly shopping site. If you’ve tried QR codes in the past and didn’t get much response, maybe you didn’t give customers a compelling reason to use the code.

    Try expanding your instructional text and offering customers something fun or of high value for taking the time to download the reader application and scanning your code.

  • Emerging and advanced tech promotion — Enhanced Augmented Reality (AR) combines real and virtual experiences. AR technology allows for a digital view of a real-world environment whose elements are augmented by computer-generated sensory input — such as sound, video, or graphics — connecting you to additional meaningful content using the camera and sensors in a smartphone or tablet.

    Imagine inviting recipients to download an application that creates interplay between a piece of mail and a digital experience in which the customer participates. AR offers a new way for your readers to make a fresh connection with your brand, and the Postal Service discount can help you offset the costs of an unforgettable campaign.

  • Tactile, sensory promotion — New this year, this promotion encourages investing in print effects like color-changing ink or expensive tactile paper — features that might never be on your radar because of the associated cost.

    However, with the promo and some creativity, you might offer to partner with one of your product producers to create an eye-catching insert for your upcoming mailings. Let your ideas flow with the use of holographic ink, conductive ink, dyes that change color with variations in temperatures, and inserts that include tactile experiences such as turf, sandpaper, speakers, or a 3-D pop-out.

Time to try something new

Innovative catalogers will view the Postal Service promo discount as the post office subsidizing your technology testing in marketing. If you’ve wanted to try something completely new and cutting-edge, these promos enable you to test and see whether you achieve a sales boost.

You have the option to be more creative in how you reach out to your customers, and although the discount versus costs might be a wash or only a small windfall, the gains you get through innovative marketing will help you to reach and engage customers.

Proposed promotions must still be approved, but catalogers can plan now to create programs to participate in. The Dingley Press can help you register for the discount when you decide to participate in a promotion. It’s time to start getting those creative juices flowing!

If you have any questions about these U.S. Postal Service programs or about using technology with your catalog mailings, contact your Dingley Press representative at 888-346-4539, or email us at info@Dingley.com for more information.

About the Author: Jim Gibbs

Vice President of Sales & Marketing at The Dingley Press. Jim has been with Dingley since 2002 and lives in Maine near our Lisbon, Maine plant location.