A Post Office Lifer's 7-Point Survival Plan for USPS

A Post Office Lifer's 7-Point Survival Plan for USPS

Former USPS market research chief Kent Smith says the Post Office can thrive if it can stop acting like a commodity player and start exploiting opportunities.

Consumers Expect the USPS to Deliver

Consumers Expect the USPS to Deliver

Two studies reveal consumers' expectations for, and flexibility on, mail and package delivery.

Goldway Says USPS Dissed Mailers With Load Leveling

Goldway Says USPS Dissed Mailers With Load Leveling

The PRC chairman asserts that the Postal Service's strategy to depersonalize consumers and ignore concerns of mailers can only end in failure.

Postal Union Chief: Think of USPS as Asset, Not a Cost Center

Postal Union Chief: Think of USPS as Asset, Not a Cost Center

NALC leader tells stakeholders that Congress and the Postal Service are on the wrong path to the future.

News Byte: USPS Standard Mail Load Leveling Begins

News Byte: USPS Standard Mail Load Leveling Begins

The Postal Service is extending what was a three-day delivery expectation to a four-day delivery expectation.

Finally, a Direct Mail Feelgood Story

Finally, a Direct Mail Feelgood Story

Despite digital trends, direct mailer North American Communications is ramping up for growth, and in turn, creating jobs in a place where good jobs are rare.

PRC Directs Postal Service to Address Excessive Discounts

PRC Directs Postal Service to Address Excessive Discounts

The Postal Regulatory Commission's Compliance Determination for 2013 directs USPS to tighten the belt on workshare discounts and Standard Flats.

News Byte: USPS Delays Load-Leveling Plan

News Byte: USPS Delays Load-Leveling Plan

Set to be in place today, the workload reduction plan will wait for Postal Service officials to review the PRC's advisory opinion.

PRC Pans USPS's Load-Leveling Plan

PRC Pans USPS's Load-Leveling Plan

The Postal Regulatory Commission advises USPS to take a better accounting of mailers' needs before executing its workload equalization plans.

USPS Taps Honeywell to Make Mobile Delivery Devices

USPS Taps Honeywell to Make Mobile Delivery Devices

All letter carriers will soon use the handheld devices, which will allow mailers to access real-time tracking of deliveries.

In a First, the PRC Releases a Special Report on USPS Finances

In a First, the PRC Releases a Special Report on USPS Finances

The Postal Regulatory Commission puts out its financial analysis ahead of its annual compliance report in the interests of "greater clarity, transparency, and accountability."

News Byte: Spiderman to Sling Priority Mail for Postal Service

News Byte: Spiderman to Sling Priority Mail for Postal Service

The webslinger, who returns to theaters in May, will begin appearing on Priority Mail boxes and mail trucks.

News Byte: Ricoh Ups Solutions for Rate-Challenged Mailers

News Byte: Ricoh Ups Solutions for Rate-Challenged Mailers

Ricoh's software business incorporates enterprise-level functionalities from its IBM acquisition.

Donohoe: Mail's a Refuge in a Chaotic Marketing World

Donohoe: Mail's a Refuge in a Chaotic Marketing World

The Postmaster General declares a new era of marketing respectability for direct mail in his National Postal Forum address.

Postal Committee Considers the 800-Pound Gorilla in the Room

Postal Committee Considers the 800-Pound Gorilla in the Room

Exigency-distressed mailers have been wondering when Congress would address USPS's huge healthcare pre-funding issue. It finally did.

News Byte: FEMA Veteran Takes Over as PRC General Counsel

News Byte: FEMA Veteran Takes Over as PRC General Counsel

David A. Trissell served seven years in the same role for the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

Senators Decide to Move Postal Reform Bill to the Senate Floor

Senators Decide to Move Postal Reform Bill to the Senate Floor

Direct mail marketers ultimately lost as Senators overwhelmingly agreed to push the Postal Reform bill to the full Senate.

News Byte: Canada Post Partners With Stream Integration

News Byte: Canada Post Partners With Stream Integration

The partnership is an effort to deliver best-in-class address certification, verification, cleansing, and enrichment for enterprise data.

Senators Rethink Rate Clause in Postal Bill

Senators Rethink Rate Clause in Postal Bill

Reworked Section 301 would leave annual rate cap at CPI and let Postal Regulatory Commission keep rate approval powers.

Mailers Appeal Exigent Rate Hike

Mailers Appeal Exigent Rate Hike

Action asks U.S. Court of Appeals to strike down 4.3% increase. An appeal to extend the limits of the exigency is expected from USPS any day.

In a Revised Senate Postal Bill, Exigency Is Forever

In a Revised Senate Postal Bill, Exigency Is Forever

The new version of the Carper-Coburn Postal Reform Act would make the exigent increase rate the baseline for future increases. The proposed rate cap would be CPI plus 1%.

Sen. Coburn to Retire at Close of Current Congress

Sen. Coburn to Retire at Close of Current Congress

The co-sponsor of the Postal Reform Act, which still awaits markup, will leave the Senate next January.

PRC's Goldway Tells What Was Behind the Exigency Decision

PRC's Goldway Tells What Was Behind the Exigency Decision

Chairman Ruth Goldway says the Postal Regulatory Commission is serious about holding the Postal Service to $2.8 billion in exigent revenue and no more.

USPS Aims to Institute Load Leveling in March

USPS Aims to Institute Load Leveling in March

Standard mailings that hit postal facilities on Friday won't be delivered until Tuesday under the cost-saving plan.

News Byte: USPS Appeals the PRC's Intelligent Mail Barcode Decision

News Byte: USPS Appeals the PRC's Intelligent Mail Barcode Decision

The Post Office takes issue with the Commission's contention that IMb requirements constitute a price increase.

The Inspector General's Top 10 Postal Stories of 2013

The Inspector General's Top 10 Postal Stories of 2013

Exigency wasn't all; there also were clouds, drones, trolls, and travails of days in the postal news last year.

The Demise of Direct Mail? PRC Approves 4.3% Exigent Increase

The Demise of Direct Mail? PRC Approves 4.3% Exigent Increase

Direct mailers begin paying 5.9% more for standard mail on January 28. A mailers' coalition calls the Postal Regulatory Commission's decision an "unmitigated disaster."

Carper Delays Markup of Postal Reform Bill

Carper Delays Markup of Postal Reform Bill

The PRC's ruling on the exigent rate request is expected soon. But the USPS intends to enforce new rates on January 27.

News Byte: Mailers Applaud PRC's Decision on Intelligent Mail Barcode

News Byte: Mailers Applaud PRC's Decision on Intelligent Mail Barcode

The coalition praises the Postal Regulatory Commission for helping protect mailers against USPS's "monopoly powers."

House Passes Innovation Act, Whacks Patent Trolls

House Passes Innovation Act, Whacks Patent Trolls

Goodlatte bill is a setback to "non-practicing entities" that file frivolous lawsuits and a win for the direct marketing industry.

Mailers Ask PRC to Reject Exigent Increase Proposal

Mailers Ask PRC to Reject Exigent Increase Proposal

In comments filed today, 13 postal stakeholders say the Postal Service's request for a rate hike is based on a "nonsensical notion."

USPS Confirms 2014 Direct Mail Promotions

USPS Confirms 2014 Direct Mail Promotions

The Postal Service will incent direct mailers that use color, digital technology, and First Class.

News Byte: Post Offices Come to Staples

News Byte: Post Offices Come to Staples

Office retailer is the first participant in the Postal Service's Retail Partner Expansion Program.

Appeals Court Rejects Challenge to Valassis-USPS Deal

Appeals Court Rejects Challenge to Valassis-USPS Deal

The court holds that the negotiated service agreement did not violate administrative law and that the Postal Service may offer volume discounts.

News Byte: Postal Board Asks for Reform for Christmas

News Byte: Postal Board Asks for Reform for Christmas

$40 billion hole in 2013 can only be filled with action by Congress, CFO says.

News Byte: Postal Reform Bill Author Applauds Sunday Package Delivery

News Byte: Postal Reform Bill Author Applauds Sunday Package Delivery

Sen. Carper sees the future in Amazon's deal with USPS.

News Byte: USPS, Amazon Partner on Sunday Delivery

News Byte: USPS, Amazon Partner on Sunday Delivery

Service begins this week for Amazon Prime members in New York and Los Angeles; more cities roll out in 2014.

News Byte: Silver Apples Awarded in New York

News Byte: Silver Apples Awarded in New York

Direct marketers from Merit Direct, Publishers Clearing House, and Hearst honored at New York City gala.

Postal Reform Hits a Snag

Postal Reform Hits a Snag

Major stakeholder concerns and an ill Sen. Coburn delay final markup on Senate bill.

Exigent Request Should Fail, Says Author of Last Postal Bill

Exigent Request Should Fail, Says Author of Last Postal Bill

Email and electronic banking just don't justify an exigent rate increase, Sen. Susan Collins tells the Postal Regulatory Commission.

News Byte: New Zealand Post to Move to 3-Day Delivery

News Byte: New Zealand Post to Move to 3-Day Delivery

Facing same competitive pressures as USPS, it will cut delivery days in half.

Deputy PMG: "Exigent Increase Not a Done Deal"

Deputy PMG: "Exigent Increase Not a Done Deal"

Deputy Postmaster General Ronald Stroman says there's still a good chance that postal reform can be passed and exigency avoided. It will help, he adds, if mailers make some noise on Capitol Hill.

PRC is Closed, But Mailers Contend With Exigency Threat

PRC is Closed, But Mailers Contend With Exigency Threat

Whether or not the PRC's 90-day deadline on the exigent rate increase is extended matters not to mailers, who continue to press their case against it.

USPS Defaults Once Again on $5.6 Billion Payment

USPS Defaults Once Again on $5.6 Billion Payment

Unpaid installments to pre-fund retiree healthcare now tally $16.6 billion. Senators use the occasion to bang the drum for postal reform.

Postal Hearing: Excise Exigency With a Healthcare Cure

Postal Hearing: Excise Exigency With a Healthcare Cure

That was the loud and clear subtext of yesterday's postal reform hearings on Capitol Hill.

DMA and ACMA Statements on Exigency Filing

DMA and ACMA Statements on Exigency Filing

Excerpts from trade associations' official reactions to the Postal Board's exigency filing.

Postal Board Asks for 4.3% Exigent Increase

Postal Board Asks for 4.3% Exigent Increase

The DMA calls the move "misguided." Sen. Carper joins mailers in urging passage of postal reform legislation to head off the January rate hike.

Second Senate Hearing on Postal Reform Set for Thursday

Second Senate Hearing on Postal Reform Set for Thursday

Healthcare pre-funding will be the center of the debate in the chamber's final hearing on the Postal Reform Act.

Exigent Postal Rate Hike Request Expected Next Week

Exigent Postal Rate Hike Request Expected Next Week

Senate hearings send message of no confidence to mailers, who fear the worst from the Postal Board of Governors' meeting next week.

To Be or Not to Be a Monopoly

To Be or Not to Be a Monopoly

In responding to a question from Sen. Tom Carper about price inelasticity of postal rates shown in a study by the office of the Postal Inspector General, PRC Chairman Ruth Goldway responded with a terse summation of the challenge facing Congress in crafting postal reform. We present it in its entirety.

Senator Coburn Blasts Rate Cap in Postal Hearing

Senator Coburn Blasts Rate Cap in Postal Hearing

The coauthor of the Postal Reform Act tells mailers that above-inflation increases are necessary for the U.S. Postal Service to stay competitive.

Senate Postal Reform Hearings Begin Today

Senate Postal Reform Hearings Begin Today

With an exigent rate increase looming, mailers, labor leaders, and postal officials testify for postal reform before a Senate committee today. Watch live at 10 a.m.

News Byte: Donahoe Tells Mailers to Think Digital

News Byte: Donahoe Tells Mailers to Think Digital

Blending direct mail with digital methods is the future, the Postmaster General tells the Postal Customer Council.

Hearing on Carper-Coburn Bill Slated for the 19th

Hearing on Carper-Coburn Bill Slated for the 19th

Direct mail industry officials are scheduled to testify. Proceedings can be viewed via live stream video.

Mailers in Talks with Postal Unions to Forestall Rate Increase

Mailers in Talks with Postal Unions to Forestall Rate Increase

The two sides have two weeks to find common ground on reform. Meanwhile, industry associations call on mailers to take their cases to Washington in opposition of an exigent increase.

News Byte: Cheapskates Rule!

News Byte: Cheapskates Rule!

A lingering effect of the Great Recession is a generally thrifty populace looking for good deals.

Exigent Rate Increase is Discussed By Postal Governors

Exigent Rate Increase is Discussed By Postal Governors

Mailers are energized to stump for Congressional reform. Without it, a price increase could be as little as six months away.

Exigency Extra

Exigency Extra

What would an exigent rate increase mean to business mailers? Here's some illumination from interested parties.

Exigent Postal Rate Increase Is Feared Near

Exigent Postal Rate Increase Is Feared Near

The Affordable Mail Alliance informs the Postal Board of Governors that such a move would be self-defeating to the Postal Service. But getting in approved won't be easy.

5 Tips from the DMA/Neopost Effective Guide to Direct Mail Campaigns

5 Tips from the DMA/Neopost Effective Guide to Direct Mail Campaigns

How to create awesome direct mail campaigns, courtesy of Neopost and the DMA.

Q3 Improvements Aside, Postal Leaders Beat the Drum for Reform

Q3 Improvements Aside, Postal Leaders Beat the Drum for Reform

One good quarter won't save the USPS, say Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe and his CFO at press conference.

USPS Releases 3Q Results; Small Improvement Versus 2012

USPS Releases 3Q Results; Small Improvement Versus 2012

Small increases in shipping and standard mail are overshadowed by a $740 million operating loss.

Senators Introduce New Postal Reform Bill

Senators Introduce New Postal Reform Bill

If enacted, the Carper-Coburn Postal Reform Act could dictate higher rates for direct mailers.

Simple Steps for Samplers

Simple Steps for Samplers

The Postal Service's discounted Simple Samples returns today, but getting the discounts may not be so simple.

Hard Road Ahead for Postal Reform Bill

Hard Road Ahead for Postal Reform Bill

Rep. Darrell Issa's plan to save the Postal Service must overcome partisan battles and election year posturing to come to fruition. Still, direct mailers are heartened.

USPS's Picture Perfect Branding for Mailers

USPS's Picture Perfect Branding for Mailers

The USPS introduces Picture Permit Imprint Indicia, allowing companies to include corporate images to IMb automation letters and postcards.

The Postmaster General Takes Issa to Task

The Postmaster General Takes Issa to Task

Patrick Donahoe cautions the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee and its Chairman Darrell Issa that "half measures" won't be able to save the U.S. Postal Service.

Lack of Legislative Reform Costs USPS $3.1 Billion So Far This Year

Lack of Legislative Reform Costs USPS $3.1 Billion So Far This Year

With revenues ticking up slightly, the Postmaster General and his CFO say reform could make the Postal Service profitable again.

The UPS Store Sets its Sights on Main Street

The UPS Store Sets its Sights on Main Street

Small town Post Office closings may soon be followed by openings of a new retail store format from UPS.

Email Pioneer Says the United States Postal Service Must Survive

Email Pioneer Says the United States Postal Service Must Survive

USPS is an important national infrastructure that can and should endure, says Google Chief Innovation Officer Vint Cerf.

Postal Board Shelves 5-Day Delivery

Postal Board Shelves 5-Day Delivery

Bulk mailers can now feel free to set their summer and fall delivery schedules, but worries fester over a looming rate increase.

Where the Mailstream Meets the Inbox

Where the Mailstream Meets the Inbox

MyPost, an inbox that shows incoming postal mail, is currently being tested among a small group of around 300 consumers.

USPS's Options: a $14B Annual Loss or a $2B Annual Profit

USPS's Options: a $14B Annual Loss or a $2B Annual Profit

USPS CFO and EVP Joseph Corbett laid out the harrowing financial stakes the agency faces now and in the coming years.

National Postal Forum: Four Challenges for Direct Mail Marketers

National Postal Forum: Four Challenges for Direct Mail Marketers

There are four key challenges marketers must "embrace" to ensure the effectiveness of direct mail in a multichannel world.

Are Higher Postal Rates in Your Future?

Are Higher Postal Rates in Your Future?

Stuck in a government holding pattern, the USPS could be forced to look to bulk mailers for salvation by raising rates, says a postal regulator.

A Sample in Every Mailbox

A Sample in Every Mailbox

The United States Postal Service introduces a flat-rate service aimed at luring product samplers back to home delivery.

Direct Mail for All

Direct Mail for All

The USPS launches enhancements to small business service Every Door Direct Mail.

USPS: 80% of Americans Support New Delivery Schedule

USPS: 80% of Americans Support New Delivery Schedule

A survey released today by the USPS found that most Americans support the new mail delivery schedule.

USPS "Customers Deserve Better"

USPS "Customers Deserve Better"

Postal Service leaders defend cost-cutting plans and praise direct mail when reporting Q1 financial results.

Customers Put Their Trust in AmEx, USPS, and Amazon; Social Media Not So Much

Customers Put Their Trust in AmEx, USPS, and Amazon; Social Media Not So Much

Household names score high on privacy with consumers, who tell the Ponemon Institute they feel less in control of their personal information than ever.

Postmaster Raps Congress for Failure to Pass Bill

Postmaster Raps Congress for Failure to Pass Bill

Hanging from a cliff, the 112th Congress ignored USPS boss Patrick Donahoe's pleas for postal reform. Now he's setting an agenda for the 113th.

Same-day delivery plots a comeback

Same-day delivery plots a comeback

The Postal Service and a British import called Shutl will soon be offering instant delivery services to rival Walmart's and Amazon's.

In mail we trust

In mail we trust

More than a third of consumers favor direct mail as the conduit for privacy-sensitive information from health and insurance companies, says an Epsilon survey.

USPS looks to Congress for survival

USPS looks to Congress for survival

The postal service announces a record loss along with hopes for a profitable future that includes direct mail

PRC clears USPS to reduce hours of retail service

PRC clears USPS to reduce hours of retail service

The PRC released Aug. 23 its advisory opinion on the USPS's plan, which allows the agency to begin implementing reduced hours of retail service at approximately 13,000 locations.

Litle & Co. finds state-by-state variance in direct response spending

Litle & Co. finds state-by-state variance in direct response spending

Wyoming, Alaska, Hawaii, and Nevada are the most active states for direct response spending, while Oregon, Indiana, Tennessee, and Michigan are the least, according to payment processing company Litle & Co., which released its findings Aug. 22.

USPS reports $5.2 billion Q3 net loss

USPS reports $5.2 billion Q3 net loss

The U.S. Postal Service reported a third quarter net loss of $5.2 billion today, with $3.1 billion attributable to refunding retiree health benefits

USPS defaults on $5.5 billion payment to U.S. Treasury

USPS defaults on $5.5 billion payment to U.S. Treasury

The United States Postal Service defaulted on a $5.5 billion payment to the United States Treasury August 1, which was intended to cover the healthcare benefits of the organization's future retirees.

Valassis: Print key for grocery retailers, but social and digital expected to surge

Valassis: Print key for grocery retailers, but social and digital expected to surge

Ninety percent of grocery retailers say that weekly circulars is their primary way of promoting products and marketing to consumers.

DMA: Direct mail response rates beat digital

DMA: Direct mail response rates beat digital

The Direct Marketing Association (DMA) has found that direct mail boasts a 4.4% rate, compared to email's average response rate of 0.12%

USPS adopts new products and services to stay solvent

USPS adopts new products and services to stay solvent

USPS chief Patrick Donahoe set out his vision for the agency at the National Postal Forum in April.

HP to merge its printing and PC groups

HP to merge its printing and PC groups

Hewlett-Packard Distribution Co. (HP) will merge its Imaging and Printing Group and its Personal Systems Group (PSG) into the Printing and Personal Systems Group, said Michael Thacker, a member of HP's corporate media relations team. Todd Bradley, EVP of PSG, will run the new entity; Vyomesh Joshi, EVP of the Imaging and Printing Group, will retire.

UPS acquires TNT Express

UPS acquires TNT Express

UPS has reached an agreement to acquire Dutch-based international delivery services company TNT Express, said UPS director of global media services Norman Black. TNT Express's major shareholders have agreed on UPS's all-cash offer at $6.8 billion. UPS expects the deal to close during the third quarter of 2012.

Marketers split on the impact of mixed postal promotions

Marketers split on the impact of mixed postal promotions

As the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) — which reported in February losses totaling more than $3 billion — struggles to stay solvent, it is using a number of promotions to try to keep shippers shipping.

USPS reports losses of $3.3 billion

The U.S. Postal Service (USPS) ended the first three months of its 2012 fiscal year with a net loss of $3.3 billion — and large losses are expected to continue until planned restructuring efforts have taken place, the agency said Feb. 9.

Quad/Graphics acquires Williamson Printing Corporation

Printer Quad/Graphics announced on Feb. 1 that it acquired Williamson Printing Corporation, a 128-year-old printer that specializes in short- to medium-run catalogs, books, direct mail and promotional products.

USPS to propose repeat mobile barcode promo

USPS to propose repeat mobile barcode promo

The U.S. Postal Service (USPS) is, for the second year, planning a summertime promotion for direct mailers that use two-dimensional barcodes, USPS VP of domestic products Gary Reblin told Direct Marketing News on Jan. 31.

USPS offers commercial mailers a free ounce for promo inserts

In response to feedback from the mailing industry, businesses mailing automated or presort letters first-class can now mail letters weighing up to two ounces at the one-ounce postage rate, said U.S. Postal Service (USPS) spokesperson Patricia Licata on Jan. 26. The "2nd Ounce Free" initiative became effective this week.

Kodak files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy

Kodak files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy

Eastman Kodak and its U.S.-based subsidiaries filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection on Jan. 19, as the company attempts to stay solvent and shift its core business from photography to digital printing.

Direct mailers no longer need to prepay postage

The U.S. Postal Service (USPS) has been granted permission by the Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC) to allow direct mailers to pay postage via credit rather than requiring prepayment, said PRC chairman Ruth Goldway on Jan. 6. The new rules went into effect Jan. 5.

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