Everything old is new again

everything old is new again“Everything old is new again” was a song that was popularised by international singing sensation Peter Allen in his 1979 smash hit of the same name. The song was also featured in the movie All That Jazz directed by Bob Fosse and starring Roy Scheider as Joseph “Joe” Gideon.

As fashions go around every ten to fifteen years so do methods and techniques of direct marketing. Email is becoming less effective as our in-boxes fill up with unwelcome messages from around the globe. Voice is slow and expensive, fax is out of date and social media rather hit or miss.

So what’s the next big trend in direct marketing that will capture the hearts and minds of your prospects?

There is definitely a trend to move back to good old fashioned snail mail. Let’s face it mail is slow, expensive and cumbersome but importantly it is still the preferred method to receive communications. Why – because it works.

Direct marketing began with letters long before email or social media had been invented. The first credible claim for the development of a real postal system comes from Ancient Persia around 550BC. The entire mailing industry grew on the back of the humble letter. The challenge with letters however has always been to keep the costs down.

A letter mailed through a mailing house using the pre-sort discounts system could reduce your postage bill by up to 20% depending upon the size and weight of the item, the destination, level of sorting and the delivery standard you select. Australia Post has certain conditions surrounding their postage discounts but as long as these are met and you lodge a minimum of 300 letters at any given time you will save. Generally speaking mail houses come into their own when you have a minimum of 1,000 letters by the time you also account for the mail processing and warehousing costs.

Postage can be reduced by asking your mail house to pre-sort the mailing list before processing the letters. It is also worth setting up your own postage account with Australia Post rather than lodging on the mail house’s account. This way you will get to see exactly what the postage bill is and you have more control over your expenses.

When purchasing a mailing list ask the list owner to tell you what percentage of the list can be barcoded. At A-ZGovBIZ we have been working for some time on achieving the highest possible barcode levels for our clients. For example our Local Councils list sits at 91% barcoded, Private and Catholic Schools 87%, State Government 83%, Aged Care 84% and Hospitals 80%. These are exceptionally high levels of barcoding in anyone’s language.

A-ZGovBIZ is a marketing services agency specialising in the public sector. Our marketing lists and mailing services combine to provide clients with a one-stop marketing delivery service. Call 02-95164703 or email sales@azgovbiz.com.au

Michael Bleakley is a journalist, communicator and marketing professional of 25 years. His career began in his early 20’s publishing tech magazines for education. Michael’s career then moved into online and book publishing for a global business publisher, then finally into database publishing and marketing at A-ZGovBIZ.

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