More tips on how to offset upcoming postal rate increases

Two PBO members wrote in this week to provide additional advice on how to save money on postage costs. The first answer is provided by Gary Feldmar, Vice President/Midwest Sales Director of Sandy Alexander, Inc. Gary can be reached at or 847.441.2780.

The second answer is provided by guest expert, Mark White. Mark is Vice President, Manufacturing for U.S. News & World Report. He can be reached at

What can I do to offset postal rate increases?

From Gary Feldmar:
In order to offset upcoming postal rate increases there are 2 basic area's of cost that are controllable:

  1. Control the actual postal cost by --

    • a. Ensuring that mailers qualify for the lowest possible postal rates- ie. automation (letter vs. flat rates),

    • b. Evaluating qualification reports for further discounts by shipping to Bulk Mail Centers (BMC's) and Sectional Central Facilities (SCF's)

  2. Control the actual cost of the final printed product by:

    • a. Adjusting sizes for most efficient press production. A good working knowledge of press equipment limitations and a proactive supplier are critical. Sometimes a size adjustment of as little as 1/4" can significantly decrease the cost of production. Check with your supplier before finalizing creative format size.

    • b. Converting conventional multi-component solo mail or offline folded formats to inline finished formats and self mailers. In some cases, the savings can be in excess of 25%. The effect on response is often offset by the decreased cost per order/response. And the time savings by eliminating lettershop inserting can be several days or, on a particularly large mailing, weeks.

    • c. Evaluating the potential savings by decreasing the weight and/or the grade of stock that will be used for your promotion. Often, meaningful savings can be enjoyed with minimal or no effect on actual response.


And, from Mark White, U.S. News & World Report:
There are a lot of things folks can be doing to reduce their postal costs --such as address hygiene, combining mail streams, and getting their printers to co-mail.**

The proposed postal rates would provide even greater incentives to do all of these things. Contrary to popular opinion, it's not true that only big outfits can take advantage of these incentives.

**Note from editor: Also see Mark White's definition of co-mailing in a separate Q&A in PBO's Ask the Experts.
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