Row of mailboxes with grassy field in the background

Photo by Yannik Mika courtesy of Unsplash

On, May 28, the US Postal Service (USPS) filed a request to increase postal rates with the Postal Regulatory Commission. This is a very large increase – more than we have seen in the last five postal rate increases combined. This comes on the heels of the 1.5% increase already implemented in January of this year.

Increases to postal rates will run 6.9% on average, with different categories ranging from 5.7% to as much as 14.6%. The new rates will take effect on Aug 29, 2021. You can find the USPS industry alert here.

What Does the Increase to Postal Rates Mean for Nonprofits?

Nonprofits across the nation use the USPS as a vital channel every day to share their important mission and goals with their supporters. Many of these organizations are still recovering from the economic impact of the pandemic. Thankfully for ClearWord clients, we continue to see strong results in 2021, so we anticipate the increased postal rates to have minimal impact. However, we are keeping vigilant and making strategic moves to keep direct mail campaigns profitable for our clients.

How the Price Increases Break Down

Most basically, single piece Forever Stamps will go from $0.55 to $0.58 cents, which is an increase of 5% or $.03 per piece. The overall average increase for Nonprofit Marketing Mail would be 7.8%, with specific increases ranging from 5.7% to more than 14%.

The complete Postal Service price filings with prices for all products can be found on the Postal Regulatory Commission site. A fact sheet on the Postal Service’s rate change request is also available.

ClearWord Is Ensuring the Best Results for Clients

In light of these increases, ClearWord is using both new – and tried-and-true – strategies to keep direct mail campaigns profitable for our clients:

  1. We carefully test package formats and design the most cost-effective mail pieces.
  2. We closely monitor mailing results and delivery to identify the best postage method for each appeal. A variety of postage methods are reviewed/tested: First Class, Presort First Class, Non-profit, single/multiple stamp RAEs vs. BREs, etc.
  3. We take full advantage of segmentation as a way to save money. We identify the best segments to mail for each House File appeal, then carefully review and discuss with our clients.
  4. We meticulously keep up with any USPS news so we can prepare accordingly.
  5. As always, we will partner with our vendors to get the best paper prices.
  6. All acquisition lists go through advanced list cleaning and mailing list security to ensure the highest level of efficiency and cost effectiveness. We respect our clients’ investment and recognize that bad data throws money down the drain.
  7. We provide excellent result reporting through our blue books system and use database modeling recommendations when appropriate.

If you’re a ClearWord client and have any questions, please reach out to your account manager. We will be happy to discuss these changes and walk through how we’ve been discussing them in regard to your account.