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Updated Oct 20, 2023

6 USPS Promotions to Take Advantage of in 2024

While it sounds old-fashioned, direct mail marketing is still a viable way to reach new and existing customers.

Isaiah Atkins
Isaiah Atkins, Business Operations Insider and Senior Writer
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This guide was reviewed by a Business News Daily editor to ensure it provides comprehensive and accurate information to aid your buying decision.

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In 2022, the direct mail industry is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 1.5%, according to ReportLinker. Suffice it to say that direct mail still matters. And if you’re marketing your business via mail, it’s essential to cut costs where possible, particularly because the price of first-class stamps is only going up. 

The U.S. Postal Service (USPS) often runs promotions and discounts on direct mail services, potentially bringing substantial savings to your business. We’ll highlight six current USPS direct mail promotions and explain more about mailers and mailing equipment. 

TipTip
A direct mailing campaign can succeed only if the address data aligns with your target customers.

6 USPS direct mail promotions

The following promotions are valid for 2022 and can offer substantial savings for small businesses. 

Tactile, Sensory, Interactive Promotion

  • Mail class: Marketing Mail
  • Registration period: Dec. 15, 2021 to July 31, 2022
  • Promotion period: Feb. 1 to July 31, 2022 
  • Promotion details: In the USPS Tactile, Sensory, Interactive Promotion, participants are eligible for a 4% postage discount. This discount applies only to Marketing Mail. You can use it for pieces that leverage innovative technological advances in the print industry, such as mail that uses multisensory experiences through special visual effects, sound, scent, texture-tactile treatments and even taste.  

Mobile Shopping Promotion

Emerging and Advanced Technology Promotion

  • Mail class: Marketing Mail and First-Class Mail
  • Registration period: Jan. 15 to Aug. 31, 2022
  • Promotion period: March 1 to Aug. 31, 2022
  • Promotion details: In the USPS Emerging and Advanced Technology Promotion, participants are eligible for a 2% or 3% discount. This promotion applies to mail that engages customers in a new and exciting way. That means incorporating technologies like augmented or virtual reality, near field communication, video in print, and digital assistant integration. 
Did You Know?Did you know
Two discount levels account for different technology types. The 2% discount covers basic augmented reality and voice assistance, while the 3% discount covers virtual reality, mixed reality, video in print technology and more.

Informed Delivery Promotion

  • Mail class: First-Class Mail and Marketing Mail
  • Registration period: June 15 to Dec. 31, 2022
  • Promotion period: Aug. 1 to Dec. 31, 2022
  • Promotion details: In the USPS Informed Delivery Promotion, participants are eligible for a 4% discount on postage. This promotion was established to increase adoption of the Informed Delivery campaign from the USPS. To qualify, businesses must sign up for Informed Delivery and launch an Informed Delivery interactive campaign. 

Personalized Color Transpromo Promotion

  • Mail class: First-Class Mail
  • Registration period: May 15 to Dec. 31, 2022
  • Promotion period: July 1 to Dec. 31, 2022
  • Promotion details: In the USPS Personalized Color Transpromo Promotion, participants are eligible for a 3% discount. This promotion applies to direct mail that incorporates marketing messages highlighted through the use of color, dynamic variable print and personalization. 

Earned Value Promotion

  • Mail class: First-Class Mail and Marketing Mail
  • Registration period: Feb. 15 to March 31, 2022
  • Promotion period: April 1 to June 30, 2022
  • Promotion details: In the USPS Earned Value Promotion, instead of a discount, new participants can qualify for a 2-cent credit for each business reply mail, courtesy reply mail and share mail piece counted. You can use these credits on future First-Class Mail and Marketing Mail letters and flats, as well as first-class presort and automation cards. 
Did You Know?Did you know
Many small businesses that regularly send a substantial amount of mail, including direct mail firms, private lenders, and online stores, can benefit from direct mail promotions.

What are the types of direct mail mailers? 

The USPS breaks down its promotions by mailer type: First-Class Mail and Marketing Mail. These two types are standard classifications for direct business mail:

  • First-Class Mail encompasses cards, letters, flats and parcels weighing 13 ounces or less. The minimum quantity to mail at commercial prices is 500 pieces.
  • Marketing Mail has a minimum quantity of 200 pieces, or 50 pounds of mail, and is used to send flyers, advertisements, newsletters, bulletins, catalogs and small parcels.

The USPS breaks up its six promotions, so there is ample opportunity for senders in both mail classifications to benefit.

What mailing equipment do I need for my small business?

If you use direct mail for business consistently, investing in a mailing system can save you time and money in the long run. Setting up a good system requires the best postage meters and mailing equipment to meet your needs. 

Here’s a look at the mailing equipment solutions to consider. 

  • Postage meters: A postage meter scans the size and weight of a piece of mail and prints the cost of its postage on the package. With this device, you won’t have to guess the amount of postage you need for mail. That saves you money you would have spent on unnecessary stamps. However, you can’t buy a postage meter; you can only lease one from an authorized supplier. The cost can range from $20 to $1,000 per month. 
  • Mailing software: Mailing software allows you to organize your mailing lists, compare carriers’ shipping rates, easily create expense reports and more. Many postage meters include basic software, but you may need to purchase more advanced programs. Your monthly subscription fee can be as high as $100. 
  • Folding equipment: Folding mail to fit inside an envelope can take a lot of time. You can speed up the process with folding equipment. This class of machine automatically folds any documents inserted into it and can process several thousand documents per hour. With such a drastic speed increase, your business can work faster and more efficiently than ever. A folding machine can cost between $100 and $15,000, depending on the model. 
  • Addressing and printing equipment: Typical computers and printers can address only a small amount of mail at once. That’s often inefficient for small businesses that need to send out large quantities of mail every month. Specialized address and printing equipment can solve this problem. Some models can label 15,000 pieces of mail per hour, ensuring each one reaches the right place with minimal work. They can cost anywhere from $60 to $19,395.
  • Sealing equipment: Sealing machines can alleviate the time-consuming burden of sealing envelopes around oddly shaped items within the package. They can make the mailing process more efficient and let you be hands-off in the process. Unfortunately, sealing equipment is often very expensive, ranging from $1,295 to $52,750. 

Matt D’Angelo contributed to the writing and reporting in this article. 

Isaiah Atkins
Isaiah Atkins, Business Operations Insider and Senior Writer
Isaiah Atkins is a marketing and SEO consultant who is adept at using email campaigns, keyword research and other tools to help brands build strong online awareness. He assists clients with content management, effective communication strategies and audience engagement. This has translated into business advertisements, press releases and in-depth, research-heavy topical guides designed to move readers through the sales funnel. At Business News Daily, Atkins has provided entrepreneurs with actionable guidance on landing page conversion, ROI, business expansion and more, while also advising on business ideas and workplace management. A writer at heart, he is working on his first novel.
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