2005 Direct Mail Market Outlook -- Mailers Bullish on '05
IWCO Direct's Andersen continues to see an expansion of programs in 2005 and feels direct mail is the best route for marketers seeking to acquire new customers, activate former clients and expand "share of wallet" with existing customers.
And Andersen isn't talking about the family photos section.
A Look Ahead: Postal Reform
The short 2004 legislative season and President Bush's unwillingness to foot the tab on proposed postal reform set the need for major changes, but most supporters of reform (read: anyone who does business through the mail) are patient and believe that major changes are around the corner. In the meantime, a postal increase is set to take root in January of 2006.
Just how big of an issue is reform for direct mailers? What is the impact of status quo in the short term? Our panel weighs in on the topic of postal reform.
Jim Andersen, president and CEO, IWCO Direct: "Postal reform is the most important issue impacting our business. We were disappointed that the great progress made in 2004 toward real postal reform was stalled by the short legislative season. We are confident that the efforts made by our leading trade organizations have galvanized support across the industry and that we will see real postal reform in 2005.
"IWCO Direct will continue to be a leading advocate for postal reform, both through our individual efforts and through our support of the trade organizations that helped to drive passage of postal reform bills in the House and Senate earlier this year."
Peter Gargano, executive vice president of sales and manufacturing for the direct division, Quebecor World: "There will absolutely be a concern with respect to costs; however, there is still a 'wait and see' attitude as to how it will actually affect overall volume."
Jim Cyze, president, Banta Direct Marketing Group: "Hopefully, there will be some reform soon. The USPS needs to realign its cost structure to entice businesses to continue using the postal system as a means to implement effective direct marketing strategies.