In an effort to make mail more relevant while enhancing revenue, the USPS has a number of initiatives lined up for 2013 including a Web interface that provides advance notice of letters, flats and parcels arriving in a recipient’s mailbox. Other Postal Service promotions and incentives include Mobile Coupon and Click to Call, which offers postage discounts for coupons that can be activated via a QR code.
But perhaps the most eye-opening opportunity of the new year has already been introduced. A recent article from VentureBeat gives a hands-on look at the new USPS augmented reality app that debuted at the 2013 Consumer Electronics Show. How does it work? Users simply place their iPad in front of a direct mail piece and watch as it comes to life with interactive offers and graphics that literally jump off the page.
If a picture is worth 1000 words, than a video must be worth a million. This certainly should get you thinking about ways direct mail could transform over the next few years. If nothing else, this app (and augmented reality in general) is an interesting way to connect direct mail not only with digital channels, but media devices as well. As for when you can expect it to hit an app store near you? Chris Karpenko, head of USPS outreach, said it should be released “before the end of 2013.”
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