Lorton Data was granted a full-service license by the U.S. Postal Service to offer NCOALink processing, the direct marketing database services provider said yesterday.
NCOALink processing is a method by which mailing lists are updated with information from address change cards filed by USPS customers. NCOALink took effect Oct. 1, replacing the previous NCOA service.
NCOALink encodes consumer names and addresses into an 11-digit number rather than supplying this information in text form. It was developed in response to the need for increased consumer privacy and information security.
Only companies that have become licensees will be able to provide NCOA services.
Lorton Data, Minneapolis, is one of 16 full-service NCOALink licensees nationwide. Full-service licensees provide the most recent 48 months of address change information. The USPS also grants limited-service and end-user licenses that provide 18 months of changes.
Lorton Data receives weekly updates from the USPS of the most current information.
On average, the NCOALink database has 10 million business moves, 86 million individual moves and 64 million family moves, for a total of 160 million address changes at any given moment.
The USPS estimates that each year 40 million Americans move, leading to expenditures of nearly $2 billion annually for handling undeliverable-as-addressed mail. NCOA has decreased this cost substantially.
The National Change of Address program was initiated by the USPS in 1986 with 14 licenses. More licenses were granted in 1989 and 1991, totaling 25. Based on privacy concerns, no new licenses were granted after 1991. Since then, the number of licenses has fallen gradually because of mergers and acquisitions. For more than 15 years, Lorton Data partnered with licensees to bring NCOA to small and midmarket companies.
Lorton Data is the first company aside from the 1991 licensees to be granted a full-service license for NCOALink.
Melissa Campanelli covers postal news, CRM and database marketing for DM News and DMNews.com. To keep up with the latest developments in these areas, subscribe to our daily and weekly e-mail newsletters by visiting www.dmnews.com/newsletters