Key Notes – Volume 04 Number 30

USPS Troubles Could Have Profound Impact on Trucking – According to the Fox Business report, USPS managed to increase package volume more than 15% between 2007 and 2016. But the increased volume has led to increased losses as shipping costs has jumped.  Then-Utah congressman Jason Chaffetz sponsored the Postal Reform Act of 2017 to help bail out USPS.  But, with Chaffetz having now resigned from Congress, most pundits viewed believe the bill has little chance of passing.  The bill leaned heavily on workforce reforms, rather than expenditure reforms.  Notable policies related to logistics efficiency are in Title IV – Postal Contracting Reform.  It hopes to “post noncompetitive contract awards meeting certain value thresholds, and improve oversight and response to potential conflicts of interest regarding contracting.”  The troubles for USPS also affect thousands of trucking companies that rely on contracts with the mail carrier.  Source:  Freight Waves

The USPS Household Diary Study – The U.S. Postal Service’s has published their Household Diary Study (HDS) for Fiscal Year (FY) 2016.  The report examines these trends in the context of changes and developments in the wider markets for communications and package delivery.  The Household Diary Study survey, fielded continuously since 1987, aims to collect information on household use of the mail and how that use changes over time.  In 2016, U.S. households received 121.2 billion pieces of mail, and sent 9.6 billion.  Mail sent or received by households constituted 82 percent of total mail in FY 2016.  Fifty-eight percent of the mail households received was sent Standard Mail.  Only 3 percent of household mail was sent between households; the rest was sent between households and non-households.  Source:  PRC

Reasons Paper Lives On – A 2016 DMA study found that 5.3% of house-list recipients respond to a direct mail piece; 2.9% of prospect-list recipients do the same.  Compare this to an online display (0.9%), e-mail (0.6% for house/0.3% for prospect), social media (0.6%), and paid search (0.5%) and the results aren’t as enticing.  So, what makes paper so good?  “It’s tangible,” says Mary Cahalane, principal of Hands on Fundraising LLC — a direct mail consultancy for nonprofits. “You can feel it, fold it, and even smell it.”  Source:  DMN

USPS to Encourage Usage of Flats Tubs for Periodicals – According to the January 2018 Release Overview, the USPS is considering to introduce a separate price for Periodicals sacks versus tray/tubs.  Currently the Periodicals flat trays and tubs pay the same prices as sacks at all presort and entry levels.  The tray/tub mail processing is more cost effective than sacks.  In order to incent the industry to shift from sacks to tray/tubs, it is proposed that a discount be given based on the cost savings due to this shift.  In addition, the USPS is considering allowing Bound Printed Matter (BPM) Flats up to 20 oz. to be included in the current co-mailing structure which includes Marketing Mail Flats and Periodicals up to 20 oz. entered at a Destination Sectional Center Facility (DSCF) or a Destination Delivery Unit (DDU).  Source:  PostalPro

Brands Found in Print Magazines More Trusted – Advertising campaigns which include print magazines amongst their mix of media channels have a 22% increase in brand trust, a new study commissioned by Magazine Networks suggests.  In addition to trust, the study suggests brands found in print magazines will also have a 55% increase in favorability and a 29% lift in purchase intent.  Source:  Mumbrella

Enterprise Payment to Replace CAPS – The U.S. Postal Service is upgrading its payment architecture for enterprise and business customers.  The new Enterprise Payment System (EPS) replaces the current product centric payment with a centralized account processing system enabling customers to pay and manage their services online using a single account.  The New Enterprise Payment System will allow USPS customers to securely pay for products and services with ACH Debit or Trust using one Enterprise Payment account that they can manage online.  NOTE:  The CAPS postage program will be retired over time with the rollout of the Enterprise Payment System.  The program is in the very early stages of development and testing.  The USPS is working with industry groups to ensure a smooth transition.  It is anticipated the CAPS program will sunset in the summer of 2018.  Source:  PostalPro