Apr 1, 2010 12:00 PM, Larry Riggs

As it did last year, the U.S. Postal Service is looking to try discounts on standard mail postage between July and September to coax more companies into using direct mail during the slow summer months.

  • At deadline, the Postal Service was still expecting the Postal Regulatory Commission to approve this year’s summer sale by mid-April, says Tom Foti, USPS manager of marketing mail.
  • “We hope we set a good example with the first summer sale,” says Foti.
  • Specifically, the USPS will provide a 30% rebate to eligible mailers on standard mail letters and flats postage.
  • To qualify to participate in this year’s summer sale, a company must have mailed 350,000 or more standard mail letters and flats between July 1 and Sept. 30, 2009.
  • For last year’s sale, the USPS identified about 3,200 mailers that would qualify. This year, the eligible number has risen to more than 3,500.
  • In all, approximately 960 mailers took part in the program last year. They included a number of catalogers, retailers and some financial institutions.
  • “I would say catalogers and retailers were the strongest players,” says Foti. “We have heard from some customers that they saw increased response during that time period. They saw the payback from mailing additional pieces.”
  • The USPS said last year’s summer discount program generated about 1 billion mail pieces, which yielded $24 million in net revenue.

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