National Postal Forum 2019 Fuels Print and Mail
By Gina Ferrara, Senior Analyst, Madison Advisors
“Growth Driven: Fueling Your Mailing and Shipping Success” was the theme this year for the National Postal Forum, held May 5-8 at the Indianapolis Convention Center. As a first time attendee and presenter, this conference—which hosted over 4,000 attendees, 125 exhibitors and 100+ educational workshops—did not disappoint. From the moment I arrived at Indianapolis airport, I could immediately sense the excitement for the Indy 500, which was a prominent theme throughout the NPF conference. The keynote session on Monday morning “fueled” the excitement even more when Judy de Torok, Manager of Industry Engagement and Outreach for the USPS, kicked off the session with this eye-opening statement: The total number of laps driven in the Indy 500 is 18,000 which equates to 47,000 miles—yet this is only a fraction of the miles covered by the United States Postal Service every day. Wow!
The crowd welcomed Megan Brennan, 74th Postmaster General and CEO of the USPS, with a standing ovation. She also echoed the racing theme and stated that while the Indy 500 is held once a year, the USPS races every day and makes 159 million pit stops across 42,000 zip codes, and drives the USA forward at full throttle. The USPS connects people and businesses by delivering an exceptional customer experience that drives business growth.
I was pleasantly surprised to hear Postmaster General Brennan highlight the same themes that I discussed in my presentation, “Why Print is Still an Important Communication Tool.” In a world where consumers are bombarded by digital interactions, it was affirming to hear her discuss print as a significant component of an omnichannel communications strategy and the important role the USPS can play. Today, marketers have more tools and digital delivery channels available for prospecting, yet it is still hard to convert a prospect to a customer. Because consumers spend more time with physical mail, a digital-only strategy will not work alone; thus, it is important for digital and physical to work together.
Informed Delivery and Informed Visibility are the latest innovations from the USPS that can help marketers turn every interaction into action by combining digital content with physical mail to increase customer conversions. With the Informed platform, the USPS is able to provide the right data, at the right time, to the right people who can make business decisions and accelerate their customer experience (CX) strategy. Since its launch in 2017, 10,000 rich-content campaigns have been generated using Informed Delivery. At a rate of 500,000 new Informed Delivery subscribers per month, you can bet that marketers will be jumping on board to take advantage of the opportunity to supply ride-along content that provides an easy and effective call to action with a direct mail marketing campaign.
Providing education, creating partnerships and helping to build business are all part of the mission of the National Postal Forum. Mail creates captivating moments and it can move people to act. Marketers who generate omnichannel campaigns that incorporate print and digital interactions and take advantage of the technology offered by the USPS will speed ahead of their competitors in the race to win new customers and gain greater market share.
“Drivers, start your engines!”