Improve Direct Mail Results by Utilising Informed Delivery and Informed Visibility 

The USPS Informed platform is trying out hands to increase effectiveness, awareness, and results for direct mail. Brands have a platform to link direct mail with omnichannel strategy and communicate via email, social media apps, and the website. 

Informed Delivery campaigns enable customers to connect and interact with services, products, and offers before getting the physical mail piece delivered at their home. 

With over 16 million current subscribers and over 500,000 new subscribers every month, the USPS mail informed delivery has hit the milestone with 15% of US households receiving an email daily showing images of the mail they are going to receive that day. 

Email open rates for that are around 70% on a daily basis. The Informed Platform also allows mailers to use Intelligent Mail Barcode (IMb) that’s full-service and create Informed Delivery campaigns that include an image of the direct mail and a CTA link driving recipients to the web to make them interact with the brand and offer. 

About Informed Visibility 

Informed Visibility enables the mailer to track each mail piece through the portal system for real-time home delivery. It tracks movement of mail pieces, handling units, and containers using the USPS processing network. This function is also termed Mail Tracking and Reporting. (IV – MTR).

With some investment in geofencing, the USPS can enable brands and mailers to accurately determine home delivery times for each direct mail campaign recipient. Using this knowledge brands and mailers can deliver meaningful, relevant omnichannel communications to engage audiences and drive results with precisely timed email and SMS messages. 

A study by Market Reach in the UK that shows the power of mail in boosting memory and increasing social media campaigns’ effectiveness. After testing brain activity for each type of media, the researchers concluded mail can play an important role within the media mix to boost memorability and potentially increase purchase intent. Our brains interact and recall information in a different way when we touch and read the paper instead of reading on screen. 

The evidence is more startling and discusses how mail interacts with social media advertising. Printed direct mail plays an essential role that enhances the impact of social media advertising. The report showed direct mail are 33% more engaging than electronic mail and 35% than social media advertising. 

Using Informed Delivery and Informed Visibility as a Marketing Tool 

IV-MTR provides information on the USPS network functions and enables adjusting production and fix schedules to promote optimal performance. 

This type of information is crucial as there are few changes to the processing network on the horizon. The US Postal Service informed delivery is integrating delivery units with  Sorting and Distribution Centers (NDC) with a new network of 65-80 Regional Processing and Distribution Centers (RPDC) – which impact the delivery of mail.

IV-MTR will help you find how delivery patterns shift because of network changes – so you can adjust mail drops to ensure desired in-home deliveries are accomplished. 

The same unique Intelligent Mail barcodes on mail pieces that make IV-MTR function also provides a wealth of data for following mail movement with internal production processes. This can provide visibility into your processes that helps teams understand processes better and improve efficiency. 

IV-MTR is specifically useful when managing multiple small mail groupings, such as optimised mail that is created of direct pallets and commingled mail mix, ensuring all mail is completed accurately and on time. 

Along with mail tracking, Informed Visibility can also provide information on mail quality. This function is termed as Mail Quality Data (IV-MQD). 

IV-MQD can help you manage your Mailer Scorecard by offering the set up option for data feed with frequent options – daily, weekly, or monthly. Its report enables you to see and edit the details of any errors or warnings shown on the Scorecard to identify root cause before they charge penalties. 

Leveraging IV-MQD to the fullest can improve internal processes but needs a commitment for ongoing oversight of mail data and correct issues. It is a collaborative process. Once root causes are identified, you can get the number of departments that touch any given mailing, highlight opportunities to improve hand-offs and communications during the manufacturing process. 

This leads to continuous improved process and higher quality mail that can be delivered more efficiently by the Postal Service, making in-home dates easier to get. 

The Verdict

Brands are challenged to clear the clutter to create awareness and mention a call to action for purchase. Direct mail is a proven marketing channel that brings high ROI if done right. Scientific study shows how direct mail creates improved memory recall to increase social media advertising and campaign efficiency. 

The Informed Delivery and Informed Visibility platform is a great marketer’s tool to increase the effectiveness of omnichannel communications and all Informed Delivery interactive campaigns. Because the USPS can increase the value of mail when they are offering a promotion with a 2% discount on campaign postage. Service providers lead the strategy by enabling their clients to test mail campaigns and not investing that 2% in postage. The promotion period for campaigns mailed from 1st Sept to 30 Nov. 

Brands and mailers can increase the customer touchpoints for direct mail and engage customers via trustworthy digital channels and reduce the postage cost. Leveraging Informed Delivery by USPS and Informed Visibility tracking is a great strategy to determine ROI on marketing and leads converted.