Are you looking to do a mailing?! Look no further, I have a step-by-step guide on how to proceed so you can easily mail to anywhere! While there are a lot of steps involved, with proper planning and the use of experts in the industry (that's us) your mailing campaign can be seamless and rewarding.
by Candice Pennings
1. Start with the 5 W's and the H
Who do you want to target? Picking a demographic can be as broad as one in each home or you can narrow down to exact specifics. Or maybe you have existing clients/customers that you want to send to.
What do you want to say to them? Are you new to the area? Are you offering a sale? Being clear and concise with your message is very important. Will a postcard be enough space or will you need several pages to let them know what you to share?
When do you want them to see your marketing? Do you have an event coming up? A holiday? Do you need them in homes by a specific date?
Where are you looking to have these delivered? Are you mailing locally? Are you mailing nationwide? The further spread out the mailers are, the less savings you will get with postage.
Why should they chose you? Give your customer a call to action; you'd be impressed on how "Come see us" can be effective. This is also a good time to positively brag your company up, take advantage of all of the space on your mailer.
How much time do you want to put into your project? Are you someone who is hands on with everything or would you prefer for us to do most of the leg work? We are a full service stop, if you chose to do so, we can be the middle man for you, simply copy us in your correspondence to your designer/printer. We will verify with you before we print and mail, so you know what's going on, but there's less stress on your end.
Create your mailing piece - This can be done by you, but printers need specific formatting otherwise your pieces could look digitized. I highly recommend using a graphic designer to create your piece for you. You will also want to add permit indicia when printing, this is going to be specific to your mailer or if you have one, use yours.
Choose a printer - There are many options for printing, brick and morter, online, or even us! Who ever you chose, make sure that they can mail or deliver the pieces to us when they are done so you don't have to, especially if there are so many it requires a forklift to move them around.
Verify mailability - Send your proof to us to validate that the piece is USPS ready before anything is printed. There are size, thickness, permit, address block placement areas and return address requirements that need to be met in order to mail.
Double check/Triple check - Always double and triple check for spelling errors.
3. The Mail List
Quantity - Get your mail list sent to us, or purchase one from us, so you have a quantity prior to print. There are many variables that can change your mailing quantity. You can purchase your own list, however we are brokers, so we get reduced rates and share those with you.
Clarity - I have a previous blog post about how a mail list should look. It needs to have actual addresses, not names of buildings or intersections as addresses as they're not recognized by the software and won't be delivered to. Bad addresses are removed from the actual mailing during that data work process.
Multiple Lists - Maybe you have a collection of data from different locations/services etc, we can combine them all into one mailing or keep them separate for different types of pieces. We can also pull out duplicate addresses by name or place so you aren't sending more than needed.
Quote - We do provide a rough quote without a list, however those would be based on estimates and not exact numbers. After a final quote is sent to you it is time to mail a check for the amount stated and order your mailers.
Seeds - This is a term for a validating address, such as your personal address and/or business address. You can have one seed or multiple in your mail list to verify when the piece actually arrived to customers.
4. Mail time!
Mailing - At this point the correct, proofed mail pieces should be in our possession, we have a mail list (or more) and a check for the postage and services required. We will ink jet address information, tab or insert if needed, prepare and deliver them to the post office for you.
Delivery - Within 1-4 days of mailing you should see the mail arriving in boxes. I recommend mailing at least a week before an event to assure that all homes receive their mail prior to your date.
Final Invoice - A final invoice will be sent to you via email or mail and will most likely show a zero dollar balance. If there are any discrepancies we will contact you personally so you aren't confused about a balance or over payment. No surprises!
Simplified 10 Step Marketing Mail Checklist
Chose what you want to mail
Chose who you send it to
Design your mail piece
Have us validate design and paper stock
Give us the mail list or purchase one to get numbers
Get the final quote and pre-pay postage and services
Order your mailers for printing and delivery to AMI
Watch for your mail in your mail box
Pay any remaining balance
Start planning your next mail piece!
We are here to help YOU. If you have any questions, no matter how big or small, please ask us so that you are completely informed and in the know.
We appreciate your business.