Postage Rate Changes for 2018

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Postage Rate Changes for 2018

UPS Envelope direct mail envelope blog
2018 Postal Rates Are Changing.

Postage prices increase on Sunday, January 21st.  According to the USPS website: ‘Mailing Services product prices will increase approximately 1.9%, and most Shipping Services products will average a 3.9% increase.’
The new 2018 Postage Rates Chart can be found here.

USPS announced the proposed price increases on October 6th and the PRC approved them on November 9th. Since then, marketing consultants and agencies, as well as marketing vendors have been suggesting ways for direct mailers, catalog mailers and publishers to save money while still using the postal service.

One of the most effective ways to save money and get the best value from direct mail is to keep an updated list.

Here are some more helpful suggestions to keep direct mail costs down and ensure that you’re getting the most value from your campaigns:

Size: For minimal postage rates, keep mail pieces at letter size: minimum of 3.5” high by 5” long / maximum 6” high by 10.5” long. Larger mail pieces fall into the “flat” category. Flats can cost more than double per piece as letters. Maximum allowed size is 12” high by 15” long.

Aspect Ratio: Letter size automation mail must be rectangular. Aspect ratio (length divided by height) must be from 1.3 to 2.5. Mail pieces that fall outside those ratios could potentially cost double the postage.

Address: Address and barcode block on letter size mail must fit into the USPS OCR read area. If it does not fit, additional postage will apply. We at PrimeNet are happy to provide clients who wish to provide their own designs with address area templates.

Folds: Self-mailers that fold: the final fold must be either below or to the right of the mailing address. Other fold configurations will cost additional postage.

Panels: Bear in mind when creating self mailers that tri-folded pieces must be addressed on the center panel to qualify for discounted automation postage.

Weight: Whenever possible, it’s most cost-efficient to keep the weight of a folded self-mailer under 1 ounce. Minimum 70# text paper and 1 inch tab closures can be used. When a mailer is over 1 ounce, 80# text paper and larger tabs must be used. Mailers over 3 ounces must go into an envelope.

Information obtained from USPS.

 


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Why Targeting Audiences is Crucial – The Direct Mail List

Direct Mail list blog image PamBy Pam Wellnitz, List Services

 


What is the most common use of a direct marketing/direct mail database?

Possibly the most common use of a direct marketing database is to generate a target list for a business’s direct mail campaigns.  Direct mail provides companies with the ability to target and define markets with customized offers for a demographic.

target market your direct mail list

 

Direct mail has a number of advantages, including:

Target recipients can be identified very precisely.

Because of targeting, only a desired audience will respond, enabling your business to provide service which will be of the most mutual benefit. On the contrary, let’s say you decided to run a great advertisement without any targeting. Though this may bring a lot of response, your business might not yet be prepared for a huge surge of customers at once. For a smaller company or franchise, a flood of response to an ad can potentially be more disastrous than zero response. Why? Because an

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Seamless Acceptance Automates Mail Verification Process

It’s now OFFICIAL!

“This email is to inform you that Primenet, a DMU mailer located in the Suncoast District is being on-boarded to Seamless Acceptance program effective 11/1/17.”   -USPS Mailing Standards Specialist|Suncoast District

It was a long approval process to officially begin the Seamless Acceptance process, but we did it!


PrimeNet has gone Seamless!

In most verification environments, mail is currently verified manually by a USPS acceptance associate before entry and finalization. The acceptance associate performs a cursory review, collects full service initial verification mail samples, conducts requested in-depth verifications, and finalizes a postage statement. Mail can be released only after this process is complete, and it takes time – but with Seamless Acceptance, that crucial time gap is greatly reduced.seamless acceptance diagram image

What does Seamless Acceptance mean for my company?

Seamless Acceptance will automate the verification process – streamlining and speeding up entry verifications. This results in a standardized acceptance and verification process for all mail preparers, regardless of their production process, and eliminates the need for Special Postage Payment Systems. There is a single streamlined standard operating procedure for acceptance employees to follow for verification. Manual scans will still be collected to capture weight, postage payment, and content eligibility. All gathered scans will be compared to the electronic documentation (eDoc) submitted and results will be displayed on the Mailer Scorecard.

The Seamless Acceptance process does not require in depth up-front manual verification at either the Detached Mail Unit (DMU) or the Business Mail Entry Unit (BMEU). This allows PrimeNet to have a longer production cycle as only random sampling is performed at the DMU or BMEU pre-induction. Current time-consuming manual verifications, such as the Mail Piece Count Verification (MPCV), will no longer be required under Seamless Acceptance. In fact, most verifications are fully automated based on eDoc and mail processing equipment (MPE) scans. Acceptance associates will manually capture data including weight, postage payment type and content eligibility during the sampling process which will be compared to the eDoc to determine discrepancies.

With Seamless Acceptance, PrimeNet will also be able to perform our own Drop Shipment Management System (DSMS) releases and clearances alleviating the need to wait for an acceptance associate to release mailings.

All of this means that your mail will enter the postal system more quickly, which is especially important for time sensitive mailings.

For more information on how our adoption of the Seamless Acceptance process can benefit your business, give us a call at 1-800-826-2869.

 

 


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We’re Proud to Support MOCA’s Cause

As a major direct mail provider in the Minneapolis/St. Paul area, PrimeNet is proud to support MOCA, the Minnesota Ovarian Cancer Alliance. We hope you will too.

Formed in 1999 by a group of ovarian cancer survivors, MOCA now counts more than 1,000 survivors as members.  To find out more about MOCA, follow this link.

MOCA 2017 Minnesota Ovarian Cancer Alliance Fund Raiser Mailing

 

Since the Minnesota Ovarian Cancer Alliance was founded in 1999, their mission has been to:

  • Create an awareness regarding early warning signs that may be indicative of ovarian cancer.
  • Create and promote resources for support, networking and education for women diagnosed with ovarian cancer and their families.
  • Unite and educate individuals, the medical community and organizations to achieve earlier diagnosis, better treatment and a cure for ovarian cancer.
  • Advance ovarian cancer research toward earlier diagnosis, better treatment, and a cure.

We at PrimeNet feel strongly that MOCA is an Alliance that can provide help and support resources to those who seek assistance, and we are proud to support their cause.

If you wish to support MOCA, please visit their donation page here.


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USPS Finance News: 2017 Year-End Results Reported

fl direct mail blog image


November 14, 2017

USPS Finances:  2017 Year-End Results Reported

“The U.S. Postal Service reported revenue of $69.6 billion for fiscal year 2017 (October 1, 2016 – September 30, 2017), a decrease of $1.8 billion compared to the prior year. The lower revenues were driven largely by accelerated declines in First-Class and Marketing Mail volumes.

“Our financial situation is serious, though solvable,” said Postmaster General and CEO Megan J. Brennan. “There is a path to profitability and long-term financial stability. We are taking actions to control costs and compete effectively for revenues in addition to legislative and regulatory reform. We continue to optimize our network, enhance our products and services, and invest to better serve the American public.”

Brennan stressed that the path forward for a financially stable future must also include urgent actions needed outside of the Postal Service’s control. They include advancement and passage of the postal reform provisions contained in H.R. 756 in the 115th Congress and the adoption by the Postal Regulatory Commission of a new pricing system as part of its 10-year pricing review, enabling the Postal Service to generate sufficient revenues to cover our costs.
CLICK HERE for the complete financial report.”

Quoted from USPS.COM

 

usps news for direct mail

 


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PRC Approves Proposed Competitive Rate Price Changes for January 2018

direct mail blog FL, Jack


USPS INDUSTRY ALERT:
PRC Approves Proposed Competitive Rate Price Changes for January 2018

On October 6, 2017 the Postal Service filed notice with the PRC concerning changes in prices for competitive products. Yesterday, the PRC approved the proposed changes which are scheduled to take effect on January 21, 2018.

The full order is available on the PRC’s website: www.prc.gov

 2018 proposed postage rates

The full order is available on the PRC’s website: www.prc.gov


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Minnesota Direct Mail Center, PrimeNet Promotes New Plant Manager

direct mail blog image

We are pleased to announce Scott Sabelko’s promotion to Plant Manager in Shakopee, MN. Scott has been working with PrimeNet for three years now, and has expanded his direct mail production expertise and responsibility during this time!

Scott has a management background at Mystic Lake Casino, where he worked as a Head Chef, managing of a team of 40 staff members. He has proven his fast-paced management and highly efficient leadership skills with PrimeNet, where he now leads our Minnesota team!

We are delighted to have Scott on board in this role.


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USPS Announces New Prices for 2018

U.S. Postal Service Announces New Prices for 2018
Penny Increase for the Forever Stamp

USPS-Industry-Alert

 

 


Vanessa Blog Image 2015 Hurricane Season

The USPS filed notice with the Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC) on October 6th of price changes to take effect Jan. 21, 2018. The new prices, if approved, include a one cent increase for the price of a First-Class Mail Forever stamp from 49 cents to 50 cents.

Postcard stamps and metered letters would also have a one cent increase. This filing does not include any price change for single-piece letters being mailed to international destinations or for additional ounces for letters.

The proposed prices would raise Mailing Services product prices approximately 1.9 percent, and most Shipping Services products will average a 3.9 percent price increase. While Mailing Services price increases are limited based on the Consumer Price Index (CPI), Shipping Services prices are adjusted strategically, according to market conditions and the need to maintain affordable services for customers.

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The proposed Mailing Services price changes include:

Letters, (1 oz.) – 49 cents, increase to 50 cents
Letters, additional ounces-  21 cents, remains at 21 cents
Letters (metered) – 46 cents, increase to 47 cents
Outbound International Letters – (1 oz.) $1.15, remains at $1.15
Domestic Postcards – 34 cents, increase to 35 cents

New Shipping Services product prices would increase Priority Mail 3.9 percent and Priority Mail Retail an average of 0.8 percent. As in the past, the Postal Service will not include surcharges for fuel, residential delivery, or regular Saturday delivery.

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The proposed domestic Priority Mail Flat Rate Retail price changes are:

Small Flat Rate Box – $7.15, increase to $7.20
Medium Flat Rate Box – $13.60, increase to $13.65
Large Flat Rate Box – $13.60, increase to $13.65
APO/FPO Large Flat Rate Box – $17.35, increase to $17.40
Regular Flat Rate Envelope – $6.65, increase to $6.70
Legal Flat Rate Envelope – $6.95, increase to $7.00
Padded Flat Rate Envelope – $7.20, increase to $7.25

The PRC will review the prices before they are scheduled to take effect on Jan. 21, 2018. The complete Postal Service price filings with the new prices for all products can be found on the PRC site under the Daily Listings section at https://www.prc.gov/dockets/daily. For the Mailing Services filing see Oct. 6, 2017, Docket No. R2018-1. For the Shipping Services filing see Oct. 6, 2017, Docket No. CP2018-8.
The Postal Service receives no tax dollars for operating expenses and relies on the sale of postage, products and services to fund its operations.


From USPS:

2018 Price Change Filing Webinars
Wednesday, October 11, 2017 at 3 p.m. (EDT)
Thursday, October 12, 2017 at 2 p.m. (EDT)

Please join Sharon Owens, VP, Pricing and Costing and Steve Monteith, VP, Marketing on Wednesday, October 11 at 3 p.m. (EDT) or Thursday October 12 at 2 p.m. (EDT) for a high-level overview of the 2018 Price Change filing. Attendees will have an opportunity to submit questions to the panel during this webinar. If you would like to submit your questions before the call, you can submit them to IndustryFeedback@usps.gov.   Details below:

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