Paper mail is still one of the most widely used forms of marketing communication. In today’s digital world, businesses see greater results when they combine their direct mail with digital marketing efforts. There are a number of tools you can use to combine the best of both worlds in order to boost your campaign across print and digital channels.
One powerful tool is the Informed Direct Delivery service offered by USPS. With Informed Delivery, businesses can optimize digital features to enhance the direct mail experience for their customers. Keep reading to learn how to get started using Informed Delivery and why you should consider it for your next direct mail campaign.
What is Informed Direct Delivery?
Informed Direct Delivery is a service provided by the United States Postal Service (USPS). Anyone who signs up for the service receives regular email alerts with black-and-white images of certain pieces of paper mail that will soon be in their mailbox.
For business owners, Informed Delivery allows you to add color images and links with the email preview of your direct mail piece that subscribers receive. In other words, your direct mail piece can easily stand out with a color image, compared to the other mail that’s previewed in black and white. Further still, you have the ability to directly link your Call-to-Action in the email, which can increase your response rates to your overall direct mail campaign.
It’s increasingly important that you take advantage of these digital features, as 59% of USPS customers participate in the Informed Delivery service. That means you can elevate the customer experience for more than half of all USPS customers during your next direct mail campaign.
How to Get Started with Informed Delivery
The USPS has a site that is specifically designed to walk businesses through the process of setting up an Informed Delivery account, and some key steps include:
Business Customer Gateway Account
- First, you need to set up your business account. You’ll need to create log-in information, describe your business, and more.
Pre-campaign Analysis Report
- Although optional, we encourage you to opt into the pre-campaign analysis report. It will provide important consumer data like who all in your area has signed up for Informed Delivery services. From there, you can evaluate how much of an impact Informed Delivery will have on your next campaign.
Intelligent Mail Barcode Serial Number Range
- USPS uses an Intelligent Mail barcode to sort mailers. You’ll need to enter the specialized serial numbers on your direct mail so that USPS will apply the digital campaign details to the appropriate mail piece in Informed Delivery.
Mail Identifier (MID)
- The MID will help to activate your marketing campaign by identifying the owner or sender of the mail.
Take Advantage of Digital Features
After you get your Informed Delivery account set up, you can start building the digital assets of your campaign according to your specifications. Overall, these assets should complement your direct mail piece and enhance the experience for your target customers. Some of these assets you can include in the Informed Delivery email preview are:
- This section is where you’ll be able to add your campaign images. These images will be in full color, compared to the normal black-and-white preview of the mailer that it’ll be attached to. While this particular image is not clickable, it does help your mailer stand out from the rest and you’re more likely to capture your readers’ attention.
- This clickable image will be placed just below the black-and-white Informed Delivery preview image. The ride-along image is where you can embed a clickable Call-to-Action. For example, your Call-to-Action on your direct mailer may be to visit your website. With the Informed Delivery feature, you can also provide that same link to your website in the email preview — making it that much easier for customers to click through to your site and improve the overall response to your direct mail campaign.
Review Your Campaign and Submit
Once you’ve reviewed your campaign settings and made sure that your links are working, you’ll be ready to submit it. Please note that when submitting a campaign, you’ll need to do it by 11:59 a.m. Eastern Time on the day before you want the campaign to start.
Why McAdams Graphics is Your Direct Mail Go-To Service
Our team of experts can help you set up your next direct mail campaign and boost your marketing efforts to new levels. From campaign details that help you take advantage of Informed Delivery to other digital tools that enhance your mailers, contact McAdams Graphics today and we’ll help you get started.