It has been another exciting day at the National Postal Forum. Earlier today I sat in packed room to listen to Postmaster General Donahoe’s keynote presentation which featured the powerful theme, “Mail: Your only friend in a world of spam.” That’s a pretty bold statement, but he made his case that the experience of mail is different from other communications by stating, “People still make time and take time for their mail.”
Donahoe told the audience, “Our role is to deliver what you create” and reinforced that the Postal Service is committed to being a solutions provider. He went on to explain the challenges facing the Postal Service and direct mail industry. He specifically included the need to make mail more:
- Personally relevant
- Actionable (actionable = valuable, making electronic connections to mail)
- Functional (technology like QR codes to make it easy to respond to mail)
- Creative (using more color and images)
If you’re a regular reader of SpeakingDirect, you’re already familiar with many of these topics as we regularly provide tips to make direct mail more relevant in cross-channel marketing campaigns.
No Specific Mention of 5-Day Delivery
We found it somewhat interesting that Donahoe didn’t directly address the 5-day delivery schedule, a topic that made huge headlines just last month. He did emphasize that America needs a flexible and adaptable Postal Service and noted they are pushing Congress hard for a new business model. He didn’t mince words when he said, “Industry needs clarity and certainty. Congress needs to make decisions, get out of the way, and let us get on with growing the industry.”
He went on to explain that the Postal Service is keeping its foot on the “cost reduction accelerator” and that the industry’s future depends on keeping mail affordable.
Exploring Innovations in Delivery
Looking toward the future, Donahoe discussed a few innovations in delivery, highlighting the MetroPost same day delivery service, parcel lockers, and redirection of letters and parcels through dynamic routing. He described the new Secure Digital Solutions unit that is working on initiatives like MyPost, a dashboard that allows consumers to view and manage their incoming mail and parcels. This has the potential to allow marketers to provide digital offers to prospects in conjunction with incoming mail.
During his speech the Postmaster General certainly made a strong case for the value of direct mail and explained how the Postal Service is adapting to allow mail to continue to power cross-channel campaigns. We will keep an eye on many of these initiatives and how we can leverage these new opportunities for your postal logistics strategies and cross-channel campaigns. Be sure to check back tomorrow as we continue to bring you coverage from the show floor.
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