Learn the Facts!
The following is a perspective by postal commentator Gene Del Polito for Direct magazine. The views expressed are the author's...and should be the views of everyone and anyone who makes a living off of the mail.
The postal industry is under attack! And it's time to people within this industry took this issue seriously. Too many who make their livings off the use of mail for business communication and commerce are turning a blind eye and a deaf ear to the endless and often mindless assaults of those who would like to characterize businesses' use of the mail as a 21st century pariah.
Each day, you can find a synopsis of the day's postal news from around the world on the PosCom website (http://postcom.org). Those who follow these postings should have noticed that there is a renewed effort within the general and consumer press to have government limit businesses' use of mail as a business communication and transactional medium. These efforts usually take the guise of complaints about mail's intrusiveness, the violation of citizen privacy rights, the deforestation of America, and the despoiling of the environment. Most recently, tax collectors from various states have begun to behave as if postage itself is yet another untapped resource for states to use to solve their own local fiscal dilemmas.
Everyone of these attacks is based on false premises, and people within our industry should become familiar with the facts. Here are a few.
Surveys conducted by independent data collectors have consistently revealed that some 85% of those who receive unsolicited advertising in the mail have reported that they at least look at these pieces before deciding whether to read them immediately, set them aside for later reading, or simply ignore them. Only 6% of those who receive unsolicited advertising mail object to receiving it at all.
Of all the vehicles for communication and commerce, mail is the least intrusive of them all. It doesn't interrupt dinner. It doesn't prevent you from seeing or listening to the programming you prefer, or force endless mouse clicks to get to what you would prefer to see on your computer screen.
Today, America has more trees than at any other time in its history. Many are grown on "tree farms" -- farms created specifically for the harvesting of wood for construction and printing. Harvested trees are swiftly replaced with new seedlings for some future year's harvest.
America also has more landfill capacity today than ever before. Today's landfills are more capacious and more environmentally sound. Furthermore, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, discarded advertising mail constitutes no more than 0.004% of all nonhardardous waste consigned to a landfill.
Get and learn the facts! Your business' future could depend on it.