puts force behind new stamp campaign

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The U.S. Postal Service has launched a redesign of its homepage in support of the new Star Wars stamps revealed on March 28 that celebrate the thirtieth anniversary of the popular movie franchise.

The promotion, from USPS interactive agency AKQA DC, consists of a full homepage "takeover" at, featuring a Star Wars skin that changes with each visit. The user can select a skin or turn the Star Wars theme off.

Running through April 7, the promotion highlights such things as the Star Wars stamps revealed at Grauman's Chinese Theatre in Los Angeles, where the first Star Wars movie opened. It also promotes Star Wars Express Mail envelopes as well as a sweepstakes effort and stamp voting.

AKQA DC created the Star Wars promotional component with navigation for easy display of the campaign offerings, including free desktop wallpapers of the Star Wars Express Mail envelopes for download.

The interactive agency is also working with USPS on creative and technical developments for a complete redesign of The postal site is one of the most frequently visited government sites, averaging more than 21.3 million visitors each month.

A teaser homepage promotion began on March 16, featuring the Star Wars robot R2D2 strolling across the site - the first time Flash has ever been used on The viral nature of the promotion is expected to bring in new visitors to the site.

Also on March 16, the USPS deployed 400 mailboxes disguised to look like R2D2. The boxes were the standard blue postal service mail collection boxes dressed in costume for the two-week period leading up to the March 28 preview of the Star Wars stamp designs.

As for the stamps, 15 new 41-cent postage stamps, with images of Luke Skywalker, Yoda and Darth Vader, were unveiled. The stamps will be released at a first-day-of-issue ceremony on May 25 at Star Wars Celebration IV, a Star Wars event held at the Los Angeles Convention Center May 24-27.

The USPS is also inviting the public to vote on its favorite stamp. The stamp receiving the most votes will be honored with the issuance of a single stamp, which will be on sale later this summer. Customers can vote online at through May 23. The winning stamp will be announced at the first-day-of-issue ceremony.

The USPS is encouraging consumers to take part in the Jedi Shipping and Mailing Master sweepstakes, as well.

On March 28 through May 7, customers can enter the sweepstakes by solving six different challenges about postal service products and services featuring a Star Wars theme. As each question is answered correctly, customers are automatically moved to the next challenge.

Customers enter their contact information into a sweepstakes form at the start of the sweepstakes.

There is a limit of one entry per challenge, for a total of six entries. Full sweepstakes rules are available on

The Jedi Shipping and Mailing Master challenge is designed to remind customers of the quick, easy and convenient suite of services available from the postal service, such as ZIP Code Lookup, International Shipping, Flat Rate Boxes, Click-N-Ship Priority Mail and Free Package Pickup.

The winner of this sweepstakes will receive an all-expenses-paid trip for four to Star Wars Celebration IV.

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