Seven Postage Savings Tips for Your Next Appeal
Postage costs can be a sizable amount of what you spend to reach your market audience, but you can shave those expenses by employing any of these seven tips for your next mailing:
- Keep it light.
Be sure that your mailing, including the stamp, weighs less than an ounce so you can take advantage of the lowest mailing rate.
- Lower return cost.
If you're mailing includes a reply envelope, choose business reply mail instead of using postage stamps. You'll only have to pay the postage for those people who respond.
- Integrate the piece.
If you use a self-mailer with your mailing, choose a format that doubles as a return envelope. This is a good way to keep your weight below an ounce.
- Size it right.
Not only does the post office go by weight for calculating postage, it also charges based on the size of the piece. Try to keep your size consistent with USPS standards to avoid unnecessary costs associated with your mailings.
- Go presorted.
If you're mailing more than 200 pieces, consider using presorted standard. It's a good way to save money, although the delivery time is somewhat slower. However, by planning ahead and ensuring the mail is sorted by zip code before it’s delivered to the post office, you'll lower the postage costs.
- Extend your reach.
Give the people on your mailing list an option to contact you online instead of asking them to mail something back to you. Most people have access to the Internet and it's a good way to let your audience contact you. Besides reducing the amount of paper and postage you're using, you'll also expose them to your website and your message. If you're asking for donations, be sure to let your audience know that your site is secure.
- Purge the list.
Remove the names and addresses of people who have moved or are deceased to reduce postage costs and the volume of mail you send out. If you make the effort to keep your list current throughout the year, it will minimize the cost of any mailing you do.
The type of organization that your company is can make a difference in postage rates. Not-for-profits can take advantage of special postage rates that are not available to private companies. For example, a non-profit can mail letters up to 3.6 ounces and flats that weigh up to a pound using bulk-mailing rates, as long as the mailing pieces total more than 200 and they are arranged in zip code order. Before an organization can take advantage of the reduced rate, they'll need to get approval from the Post Office by submitting Form 3623.