USPS Informed Delivery explained
The USPS recently launched two exciting services with similar names at almost the same time- Informed Delivery and Informed Visibility. This naming convention is confusing especially to Mail Service Providers. Today we will provide information on Informed Delivery. We’ll address Informed Visibility in a future post.
How Informed Delivery works:
USPS Informed Delivery provides consumers with notifications about postal deliveries to their home. Recipients can sign up for an app and website dashboard log-in as well as a daily email notification. Mailpiece scans are generated on postal equipment, and users get actual gray scale scans of the mail pieces before they are delivered. These scans are provided through a portal/app, or through email notification and app/portal access. The images are usually posted early on the delivery date.
Informed Delivery is offered to Residential addresses only for letter size mail in selected ZIP codes, and coverage is expanding rapidly. Flat-size mail will be added in the future. Those interested in signing up can do so on the USPS website.
Mailers and Mail Service Providers participate by conducting Informed Delivery Mailing Campaigns. Mailers create campaigns through a portal or mail.dat input. Mailers can replace the scanned black & white images with full color images, call-to-action links, and links to url’s or purl’s.
Benefit to Recipients and Mailers-
For mail pieces not associated with an Informed Delivery campaign, recipients can see all mail being delivered to their home whether or not they can get to their mailbox that day.
If a mailer has created a campaign associated with the mailing, recipients are able to view color images of the mailing, an associated mailer image including offers, and can also click through to the target url from their email or dashboard. In other words, the recipient can see the mail piece and go directly to a web site to place an order or gather more information before they have even gone to their physical mail box.
Mailers, in addition to the obvious benefits of multiple marketing touches within the same direct mail campaign, are able to view a dashboard and download reports showing the number of Informed Delivery participants in their mailing, as well as email open rates and click through rates.
Best of all, it is FREE!
Mailer/ Mail Service Provider participation
Any company can launch a campaign as long as their pieces are automation compatible and contain a valid Intelligent Mail Barcode.
There are currently two methods for mailers to create campaigns:
Mail.dat: mailers attach additional fields (RMR, RMS,RMB) to a mail.dat file. These fields include links to images and a target url. Testing and USPS approval prior to going live is required.
Informed Delivery portal: mailers enter mail campaign information located within a mailer’s USPS Business Customer Gateway.
Here are Informed Delivery® Quick Facts as of February 2018:
Almost 8 million users have signed up for Informed Delivery. Of those users, over 3 million email-enabled users participate in the service.
While only 79% of users visit their physical mailbox each day, 88% check their Informed Delivery notification daily. If signed up for email, most users (96%) primarily view the email notifications rather than logging into the dashboard view.
JetMail recently launched our first client campaigns. Please contact us if you are interested in learning more about Informed Delivery or launching a campaign.
Next time on the Blog: USPS Informed Visibility Explained
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