What can this beCatalogers know that in their business, it pays to think ahead and plan to take advantage of mailing promotions. There are two promotions from the U.S. Postal Service coming up that will help you save money and increase customer engagement at the same time. Rob Nowak, Director of New Technology at The Dingley Press, explains which of these promos are most applicable to catalog mailers, and how The Dingley Press can help catalogers get the most out of these programs.

Emerging technologies promotion featuring Near Field Communication
Don’t let the title fool you: This promotion doesn’t require mailers to use near field communication (NFC), a technology that would be prohibitively expensive for most catalogers to use. It’s the second component of this promotion — augmented reality — that is easier to implement and much more cost-effective, especially since a catalog need only contain one page with an AR element to qualify for the 2% mailing discount.

Although a similar promotion ran last year, Nowak explains that this year’s promo is a little different: It requires enhanced AR. Last year, the AR feature in the catalog could take readers to a video or other multimedia interaction on their device. With enhanced augmented reality, the video appears more like it is embedded in the mailpiece.

Registration for this promotion begins June 15, and the program runs from August 1-September 30.

Dingley charges only $139 to handle the process of creating a single page containing AR — testing the catalog files, making sure the instructions on the catalog page fit the USPS requirements, and even sending the files to the USPS for verification.

To make matters easier, Dingley can handle registration for customers. “We register about 75% of our customers for these promotions, and they appreciate that we go through the process for them,” Nowak says. “We make it happen and we make it happen at an affordable price point.”

Mail drives mobile promotion
This promotion is similar to a popular one the USPS has been running for the past few years, Nowak says, although it has used different names. The two requirements of this promotion are that the mailing uses a QR code and that the cataloger’s website is mobile-optimized. As with the Emerging Technologies promotion, Dingley can help customers with registration, which begins on September 15.

Customers will need to create their own QR codes, but this is free and easy to do. A note of caution: Dingley strongly advises against using URL-shortening websites to generate the QR codes. Nowak says customers can also contact Dingley for recommended QR code generator websites that are free and reputable.

“Once the customer has generated the QR code and placed it in the catalog, we can offer a lot of assistance,” says Nowak. “We can do the testing and send the files to the USPS for pre-approval, and can also register the customer at the postal gateway if they choose.”

Both promotions are worth participating in just for the postage discount, but with help from The Dingley Press, they can also provide more ways to connect and engage with your customers.

To learn more about using technology with your catalog mailings and to take advantage of current or upcoming USPS promotions, contact your Dingley Press representative.