Direct mail and the postal service...

Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by allstar, Dec 3, 2003.

  1. allstar

    allstar LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 282

    I may be interested in doing some direct mail advertising.Is it possible to have some flyers made up then go down to the post office and pay a fee to have the flyers mailed to certain geographical areas or certain parts of a town or county?If not,what would be the first step?Thanks. Jim
     
  2. Cheryl

    Cheryl LawnSite Member
    from Florida
    Posts: 95

    Jim,

    Start here:

    http://www.usps.com/businessmail101/

    I will tell you, it is probably the most expensive form of advertising there is. However, if done right, it is the most successful.

    The next best thing, I think, is the coupon books/packets. You may pay from 3 cents to 5 cents per home per month. Some companies require a one year commitment.

    By far the best thing I found is targeted mailing. Look at the neighborhoods you want to do business in, and mail them attractive, professional fliers (folded, no envelope). You may pay 23 cents for a card or 37 cents for a letter, but you will not have to send 11 thousand or 30 thousand, to get a responses (from places you don't want to go). Make your fliers look like helpful information/education to the home owner. Tell them who you are and how you do your job.

    If they like your flier they will read it. If they like what you have to say, and they are in the market for your services, they will call you. Don't be the cheapest, be the best.
     
  3. tiedeman

    tiedeman LawnSite Fanatic
    from earth
    Posts: 8,745

    just post cheryl. First time I learned about the post office doing mailers was from a J-Thomas postcard that I received in the mail. So I checked it out, and it seems like a pretty good idea
     
  4. Equipguy

    Equipguy LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 370

    Direct mail can be a good thing, do have a specific target market and plan on doing at least 4 mailings to that group during the season.
     
  5. Team Gopher

    Team Gopher LawnSite Platinum Member
    from -
    Posts: 4,041

    Hi Allstar,

    You can talk with your local post office and they will give you all the information you need.

    Here is a post on mailing lists that may be helpful.

    Cost of mailing list?
     
  6. Rustic Goat

    Rustic Goat LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,194

    Look into purchasing mailing lists for specific areas, best breakdown will be by zip code, then target your market.
    A Cole's directory will do that plus tell you many more specifics for each household if you want to really get exact with your list.

    To get a bulk mailing permit is one way to go, but check into all the details they require before purchasing your permit. Call the main post office in your area, there's usually one person that handles the permits.

    Myself, have found it less hassle to just mail them myself after generating the mailing list.

    Agree 100% with Cheryl about making YOUR flyer look good, it will pay off in the long run.
     
  7. cost $150.00 for application fee
    cost $150.00 per year
    postage for letter is .26, sorted by zip, and a miniumum off 200 letters
     
  8. BravesFan

    BravesFan LawnSite Member
    Posts: 233

    Saturation rate will get you as low as .12 for a 3.3 oz. piece.

    Dennis
     
  9. TRex

    TRex LawnSite Senior Member
    from DFW ,TX
    Posts: 487

    Dennis could you please go in to more detail about the saturation rate. I have not seen anything on the usps site about it.
     
  10. BravesFan

    BravesFan LawnSite Member
    Posts: 233

    The saturation rate means you are mailing to at least 75% of the total possible delivery points on a single carrier route or to 90% of the total residential addresses on a single carrier route, ,and you sort the pieces in carrier route sequence.

    You first need your bulk mail permit($150 setup plus $150 yearly). If you do alot of mailing, this can quickly pay for itself.

    If you want to find out more information about the routes and sorting, visit your local USPS and go to the bulk mail business office(usually in the back of the building). They can give you all the paperwork you need to get going, as well as a couple good guides explaining everything in detail.

    Dennis
     

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