November 13, 2001 Volume 1 Issue 25
Postage Sign of the Times
This is another sign of the times article.
And even thou about half of the readers of this E-zine are not from the USA or Canada ... instead, from elsewhere 'round this globe, these words are equally applicable to you.
Because it is about direct mail and sick people.
A few weeks back I took a creative approach to the issue of anthrax in the United States Postal System. And came up with a list of 15 things to do to keep mailing. Today my approach is partly political and partly social. This time I come close to endorsing a product. Something I'm frankly uncomfortable doing.
Still there is a reason. And the reason is we all use the Post. No matter where are in the world. And we are EVERYWHERE in danger if we do not take the bioterrorism dumped upon the USA seriously.
There are some truly "sick" people out there. Who, in my opinion, based on travel in 165 countries on 6 continents over the last 3 decades, are not so hateful of the United States as they are jealous. Jealous they do not have what is available in the States.
The reason given for an attack upon any group by any other group is "they" (whoever "they" is) are doing something bad to me. In most cases this is nonsense. In most cases the unhappy group is doing nothing for themselves! And want to take away from others.
The USA is an interesting place. It has to set quotas on how many new and legal immigrants from any one country can enter each year. And still, countless tens of thousands sneak in. Why, if I'm such a bad guy being a USA citizen, do others beg, plead, pay and do whatever it takes to get into this country?
No, the issue is not hate. It is stupidity! And being dumb is no excuse. There is no reason today NOT to know what is happening almost everywhere, at almost anytime. CNN saw to that 20+ years ago. The BBC is offered worldwide and has been since 1991. There are global networks from Australia, Canada, Hong Kong - and the middle-east. No, not knowing what's really happening won't cut it.
"Crying" won't either. No matter where you live, work, play. That includes the States, which has far too many crybabies. Life has been so good for so long for so many, with little effort, many think the rest of us owe them something. I don't owe you zilch!
If you want something, get up, get out and work for it. If I'm your competitor, win with your competitiveness. If I'm your neighbor, join me and we'll work the project together. If I'm on one side and you're on the other, know we may disagree. Do not cry.
War is not only hell, it is flat out stupid. I hate it. And yet, the current war is the only answer to a horrid situation.
By the way, Ramadan begins this week ... Friday, November 16. You know what? ... so what! Those that attacked, if that was a true concern (which I seriously doubt) should have thought about that long before September 11. If I get a vote (I do not) I'd double the attack for the 30 days of Ramadan. Not back off - instead, pick it up. Because if you do not "get it", you will when you know backing down is not an option.
Okay, where is this rant going? To direct mail. Over the last 60 days the USPS has delivered about 32 billion (yes, that is "B" as in billions) pieces of mail. As this is being written 3 of the total where letters with anthrax. So, the record is great. Yet, it doesn't really matter, because the entire USA has another threat within their shores.
And guess what, ladies and gentlemen ... you do to. No matter where you live, you do to. Because mail is delivered worldwide every day. I've never been anywhere I could not get mail. Most often daily - at least weekly. So, you too must be on alert. To defend your right to mail and to get mail. For many of us, me included, direct mail is a major source of my business. And "I ain't gonna let no stinkin' terrorist stop me!"
fyi - the United States Congress has had no mail delivery for nearly a month. We could smile and see the advantage. Yet, there is a great disadvantage when you, me, and "yes" our government, is unable to get mail; we each loose touch with each other.
Here comes the commercial. Pitney Bowes, the postage meter people, have an idea which I like. They are suggesting that all mail going to the US Congress (about 50,000 pieces every day) be digitized - and sent by computer to each officials office. Where it, in its entirety, will be read on a computer screen.
There is a system for doing this safe to the handlers. At a remote location. Away from sensitive areas. We're talking government here ... the same could work for any big business that sends and receives tons of mail every day, every week. Mail order catalogues come to mine. AT&T. Toyota. The Royal Bank. "Yes", it will be expensive. It will slow delivery ... at least as the system works itself into place. And ... it will be safe.
For the last several weeks Pitney Bowes has been advertising to businesses news of their traceable "fingerprint" meter process. Much like DHL / TNT / UPS / FedEx and the USPS Express Mail Service has. The technology is such that you, from your office, can literally trace a single piece of mail. And your recipient will be safe, too.
Bless these men and women from a corporation within our industry. They are now in the security business ... like it or not. I like it! I like it when private business has an idea that is good for everyone. I have no problem paying taxes for a system that offers a benefit. And although I have not seen the process in action, I believe it. As it comes from a company which has earned trust within the direct mail marketplace - over decades.
Also, before you ask, they have no idea who I am. I get paid zero by them. They do not know I'm writing this article. In fact ... I do not own one of their meters! These guys just happen to have a pair of great ideas. And I think we should get on with it. You may wish to visit their web site ... Click here: Pitney Bowes.
The Direct Marketing Association also offers some updated news you may find worth the time to view. A specially created online library of information and resources relating to the anthrax challenge is now available at http://www.the-dma.org/... "click" the "crisis" button ... and take a look.
The world's most famous philosopher is ... Anonymous. At least I think so!
So, every E-zine issue of The Works of Marketing with Ray will have a quote from this infamous writer. Here's one for this issue.
"The sooner you fall behind the more time you'll have to catch up."
"Quotes with Direction" has been a part of my web site collection from day one. If you like quotes visit the archives ... www.rayjutkins.com/quotes/. There's a new batch up every 4 weeks.
The Baker's Dozen
Nearly 3 years ago I began this series ... The Baker's Dozen.
The Baker's Dozen ... 13 for the "price" of 12. What an offer! The series has covered a wide range of marketing, direct marketing and sales topics. This time let's talk the standard of Direct Marketing - Direct Mail.
In Canada they call it AdMail. Some prefer Direct Mail Marketing or Advertising Mail.
No matter your description, Direct Mail has been around as a business marketing tool since pre-WWI. The teens of the 20th Century. A long time.
Before radio. Long before television. At about the same time the telephone was being accepted as a business marketing too. And still today Direct Mail is going strong.
Around the world Direct Mail is used to generate leads for a sales staff. To build traffic at a retail location. To raise funds for a cause. And to create an order.
For the rest of this Baker's Dozen direct mail story visit http://www.rayjutkins.com/baker/baker06.htm.
by ROCKINGHAM*JUTKINS*marketing, all rights reserved.