Mitt Romney mails USPS-compatible DVDs

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When Mitt Romney's official campaign in Iowa decided to promote its candidate before the Iowa caucus in mid-April, it turned to a mail piece that included a full-size DVD about the former Massachusetts governor.

The DVD, which was sent out just after Romney announced his presidential campaign in Iowa on Feb. 8, was designed to give Iowa Republican caucus members and straw poll attendees an in-depth look at the candidate.

"We felt a DVD would be a great way to introduce Mitt Romney to voters," said Jennifer Dean, creative director and co-founder of JDK Marketing and Public Affairs Inc., Des Moines, IA. JDK created the campaign in Iowa for Romney for President.

To mail the DVD, Dean and company turned to St. Paul, MN-based OneDisc.com Inc., and its Expericard, a lightweight, durable postcard that contains a DVD or CD-ROM. The 8-inch by 6-inch, 1.2 ounce postcards are designed to hold full-size or mini-size discs.

Dean mailed 75,000 of the DVDs in April and also bought a 5,000-count overrun to hand out at events.

A key reason the product was chosen was because the mailers had been certified by the US Postal Service to be processed at the automation letter rate or the machineable letter rate. Since the mailers can be processed through USPS machines, they are considerably less expensive than the alternative, which would be to mail the DVDs as flats.

"We were very happy with how the mailers turned out," Dean said. "They were less expensive than other mailers that handle DVDs and CDs, and less bulky."

Postage costs for the mail pieces range from 21.8 cents to 25.3 cents per mail piece when mailed at the Standard-Mail rate. The pieces can also be mailed at First-Class rates, but the postage would be more expensive. OneDisc also charges 59 per CD and 89 cents per DVD at the 75,000 quantity. This fee includes the assembled Expericard, ready to mail.

"If the mail pieces were handled as flats, postage would run from 33 cents to 47.7 cents per mail piece," said Tom Vanderpool, CEO/CTO of OneDisc.

"[ The piece] contains three layers of paperboard, glued all the way around twice, with a tray in the center that houses the disc," Vanderpool said.

The front of the mail piece featured a photograph of Mitt Romney addressing an audience. It read: "Mitt Romney for President" and followed with one of his quotes,"I believe the American people are the source of our strength."

Among other things, the back of the mailer instruced recipients to rip open a perforated area of the mailer to retrieve the DVD.

Once they opened the mailer, they can view a 15- to 18-minute DVD that gave an overview of the life of Romney and included bonus materials such as Romney's Iowa announcement, a speech he made to the Conservative Political Action Conference, and a Romney campaign commercial.

Recipients can join the campaign at www.mittromney.com or via a toll-free number.

"We received a lot of positive feedback from the mailing," Dean said.

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