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New USPS program registrations opening soon!

by Janet Lockhart-Jones, Ed.D., MDC | April 26, 2013 | No Comments

The USPS® is offering promotions and cost-saving incentives to mailers looking to expand their brand and their customer base. Registrations for two of the first three 2013 USPS® promotions have closed.  The registration and close date for Mobile Coupon/Click-To-Call promotions is April 30, 2013.  Mailers who missed these opportunities have four more waiting for them, assuming they qualify. The four remaining programs are: Emerging Technology, Picture Permit Imprint, Product Samples, and Mobile Buy-It Now.  Registrations start as early as May 1st for Product Samples and as late as June 15th for Emerging Technology.  Registration does not open until September 15, 2013 for Mobile Buy-it-Now so expect to see a BLOG posting closer to this date.

Emerging Technologies Promotion Mailpieces taking advantage of this promotion must meet the requirements of one of three emerging technology components: Augmented Reality, Authentication, or Near Field Communication.

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Augmented RealityThe mailpiece must contain a print-mobile technology (i.e. Mobile Barcode) that leads the recipient to an augmented reality experience. The augmented reality experience must have all of the following characteristics:

  • Combines real with virtual – the mailpiece triggers an experience that is enhanced by digital information generated by a computer or mobile device
  • Interactive in real time – the display or exposure to content is triggered by the recognition of the mailpiece seen through the camera on a mobile device or computer and ends when the mobile device is moved away from the mailpiece. As an individual moves the camera or mailpiece, the technology must provide accurate placement of relevant content on the mailpiece in real time.
  • Rendered in 3-D or 2-D – the augmented image must have the appearance of 2-D or 3-D static images overlaid onto the mailpiece.
  • Relevant to the content of the mailpiece – the augmented image must be relevant to the content of the mailpiece and enhance its messaging.

Authentication – The mailpiece must contain print-mobile technology that verifies the user’s identity and facilitates access to secure personal content. All of the criteria below must be met:

  • Utilize content within the mailpiece – the authentication process must rely on at least one piece of information contained in the mailpiece (e.g. a unique promotional code, customer reference number, etc). This information must provide one factor in the authentication process – in most instances this would be considered a “Knowledge” factor.
  • Leverage mobile technology – the authentication process must leverage mobile technology to verify the user’s identity. The mobile device must provide the second factor in the authentication process – in most instances this would be considered a “Possession” factor.
  • Facilitate access to specialized privileges – the authentication process must utilize information unique to the individual user and must either serve to authenticate the individual’s identity or facilitate access to personalized content in a secure environment.
  • Relevant to the content of the mailpiece – the authentication process must be relevant to the content of the mailpiece and enhance its content.

NFCNear Field Communication (NFC) – The mailpiece must incorporate standard NFC technology (e.g. smart tag or RFID chip) to engage a mobile device in providing an interactive experience for the user. The interaction is enabled by touching the mobile device on the NFC embedded item or within 1-2 inches of the item.

Incentive: This promotion provides business mailers with an upfront two percent (2%) postage discount on Standard Mail®, Nonprofit Standard Mail®, and First-Class Mail® letters, flats and cards, both presort and automation. Mailers have the option to use any one (or more) of the three technologies to qualify for the promotion, however, the promotion discount can only be applied once to each mailing and the total discount that can be claimed is just two percent. Other requirements:

  • Participants and/or mail service providers must register on the Business Customer Gateway and agree to the promotion terms at least 2 hours in advance of submitting the first qualifying mailing. This registration must also specify which permits and/or Customer Registration ID’s (CRIDs) will be participating in the promotion. Registration for this promotion runs from June 15 through September 30, 2013.
  • Mailings must be submitted via eDoc using Mail.dat®, Mail.XML or Postal Wizard. Mailings claiming the Intelligent Mail Full-Service discount submitted using Postal Wizard may not exceed 9,999 pieces. The eDoc must identify the mail owner and mail preparer in the By/For fields using the CRID.
  • All pieces covered by a postage statement claiming the discount must meet all eligibility requirements.
  • Mail must be tendered for acceptance during the promotion period of August 1, 2013 through September 30, 2013.
  • Postage payment for the eligible mailings must be paid using Permit Imprint or Precancelled Stamp permit. Some meter mailings may qualify. OMAS and “Official Government Mail” are not eligible.
  • Every Door Direct Mail (EDDM) deposited at a Business Mail Entry Unit may qualify, but EDDM retail mailings are not eligible.
  • Mailings of automation letters or flats must have Intelligent Mail barcodes.
  • Mailpieces must contain copy near the barcode or image that provides guidance to the consumer to scan the barcode or image.
  • Mailers must provide hard copy, unaddressed samples of the mailpiece showing the placement of the mobile barcode image or tag, and the directional copy to the acceptance clerk. Mailing agents submitting mailings from multiple mailers must submit a hard copy sample of each mailer’s mailpiece. Mailers must also retain electronic or hard copy samples until November 30, 2013 and provide these samples upon USPS request.

pitney picture permit

Picture Permit The Postal Service worked with the mailing industry to identify and develop marketing tools which will enhance the value of mail and provide opportunities for volume growth. The development of the Picture Permit Imprint Indicia (Picture Permit) is one such initiative; creating an opportunity for mailers to use the permit indicia space of their mailpiece as prime real estate for branding and advertising their offerings. The Promotion is open to mailers who have completed the Picture Permit authorization process.

Picture Permit provides commercial mailers the creativity and flexibility to customize the permit indicia space of a First-Class or a Standard mailpiece by adding a business-related image such as a company logo, trademark or brand (color images only). Picture Permit is designed to improve the mailpiece’s visibility and impact as a marketing tool.

Incentive: The Picture Permit Fees, presort First-Class Mail® letters and cards = 1¢ (plus applicable Postage) and Standard Mail® letters and cards = 2¢ (plus applicable postage) will be waived for registered participants.

prod sampleProduct Samples Promotion –  This promotion applies to Standard Mail® and Nonprofit Marketing Parcels that contain product samples during the promotion period. For the purpose of the promotion, a product sample is defined as a tangible and physical item, i.e. a trial size or miniature version of a full-sized product, whose purpose is to encourage recipients to purchase a product or service, form a belief or opinion or take an action.

Incentive: The incentive for this promotion is an up-front five percent (5%) postage discount. All qualifying pieces must contain product samples. Other requirements:

  • Participants and/or mail service providers must register on the Business Customer Gateway and agree to the promotion terms at least 2 hours in advance of submitting the first qualifying mailing. This registration must also specify which permits and/or Customer Registration ID’s (CRIDs) will be participating in the promotion. Registration for this promotion runs from May 1 through July 31, 2013.
  • Mailings must be submitted via eDoc using Mail.dat®, Mail.XML or Postal Wizard. The eDoc must identify the mail owner and mail preparer in the By/For fields using the CRID.
  • All pieces covered by a postage statement claiming the discount must meet all eligibility requirements.
  • Mail must be tendered for acceptance during the promotion period of August 1, 2013 through September 30, 2013.
  • Postage payment for the eligible mailings must be paid using Permit Imprint. Precancelled Stamp permit, Meter Permit mailings, OMAS and “Official Government Mail” are not eligible.

Additional information More detailed information regarding these upcoming promotions and access to a USPS® recorded Promotions webinar may be found at this site: https://ribbs.usps.gov/mobilebarcode/upcoming.htm

 

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