Cost-cutting Tips You Can Take to the Bank
Ask your service bureau to give you the postage estimates both ways (one ZIP stream vs. two ZIP streams) to be sure where the cutoff is. If the postage savings outweigh the price of selective binding, selective binding definitely is the way to go.
Use add-a-name or add-an-address to increase carrier route volume and qualify for added discounts. Add-a-name is the process where you add one or two records to a carrier route in order to qualify for a discount if you were previously short of the 10-per-carrier requirement. Often, if you have a pool of records to draw from that are close or at breakeven, the records added bring your postal costs down, and the net gain is positive. If you use inactive buyers or modeled names from a cooperative database, it’s usually worth doing. Keep in mind that the number of add-a-name pieces added will be a function of how many pieces are mailed and the geographical distribution of the mailing. For most mailers, a national circulation of 700,000 or more is required for add-a-name to make economic sense. At this level, generally about 5,000 to 10,000 catalogs will be added.
Develop a Contact Strategy
Test for the preferred method of contact. For example, if a customer only responds to e-mails, you may be able to decrease catalog mailings and replace these “contacts” with e-mail contacts. Often, Web buyers aren’t traceable through typical source code tracking. So they may look as if they’re not responding well to a mailing when, in fact, they are. Therefore, this method should be backed up by significant testing over the course of a year.
Don’t Stop Mailing to Web-only Buyers
When you look at your source code report, it appears that Web-only buyers are considerably below breakeven. Even the results from the most recent Web buyers don’t look exciting to you, I’m sure. It’s logical to conclude that you should stop mailing Web-only buyers in order to save money. However, in recent matchback studies we’ve done, Web-only buyers are performing at more than acceptable levels. Keep mailing them.