The USPS is enacting the first postage rate adjustment since August of 2021. Postal rate increase 2022 is scheduled to take effect July 10.
Scroll for a summary of the new rates. Given the current somewhat unpredictable and erratic direct marketing environment, let’s take a moment to examine some readily available options to shelter ROI from further harassment.
Direct mail is the reigning ROI champion
For direct marketers who rely on the impressive response rates direct mail elicits, this rate adjustment is literally the last thing they need. Between instability in materials, labor, and digital privacy regulations, direct marketing ROI has been under relentless attack. But there is good news on two fronts: direct mail’s strong ROI, and tactics to protect that from erosion.
According to the ANA Response Rate Report 2021 released in January of this year, letter-sized envelopes to Prospect lists has the highest ROI of any channel at 112%. The easy math here is, spend $100 and generate $212 (net of costs) in revenue. Further, this ROI is so far ahead of even 2nd place (SMS/text) to say nothing of the former 1st place tactic (email) that rising costs would have to grow significantly more before direct mail is in danger of yielding the top spot.
Tactics that protect direct mail ROI
Fortunately, there are numerous opportunities for brands to help protect direct mail’s ROI against rising costs by reducing their postage bills and improving response rates.
- Work-share discounts – Direct mailers can take steps that make USPS employees job easier, and in return, the USPS discounts mail pieces, often substantially.
- Promotional discounts – The USPS offers a series of promotions throughout the year aimed at promoting the use of marketing mail. Qualifying mail pieces can earn anywhere from 2%-4% postage discounts during these windows of opportunity.
- Advanced data strategies – The other path to fortifying ROI is increasing conversions. Direct mailers need to evolve their data strategies to target only those prospects who are signaling a clear intent to convert, and to engage them with hyper-targeted mailers that use relevancy to drive engagement and increase conversions.
For more information on these tactics, enjoy our free eBook, 4 Ways Brands Can Save on Postage in 2022.
USPS rate increase 2022 chart
Here is an overview of the new rates that have been approved by the Postal Regulatory Commission, (PRC) that take effect July 10. Note the 6×9 postcard postage is the same as a traditional-sized postcard.
|Average Increase %||
|General increase||6.5||Excludes package services|
|Retail First-Class Stamp||3.44||New rate is $0.60|
|Retail First-Class Postcard||10.0||New rate is $0.44
Includes sizes up to 6”x9”
|First-Class Automation Letter||6.5|
|First-Class Automation Post Card||8.9||Includes sizes up to 6”x9”|
|First-Class Automation Flat||3.81|
|Standard Mail Automation Letter||6.15|
|Standard Mail Carrier Route Flat||8.326|
|Standard Mail Automation Flat||8.543|
|Standard Mail Carrier Route Letter||8.657|
|Non-Profit Automation Letter||4.61|
|Non-Profit Automation Flat||11.15|
Reasons for optimism
Despite this latest rate adjustment, things are looking decidedly up for the long-term health of the USPS.
The Postal Reform Act of 2022 was passed by overwhelming majorities in both the U.S. House and Senate and signed into law by President Biden on April 6. This important legislation corrects the highly flawed Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act of 2006 which has been perceived as a major driver in the USPS’s rate adjustment strategy.
Whether the Postal System will leverage this new legislation to ease up on planned future rate adjustments is unknown at this time, but mass mailers everywhere are hopeful.
Let us help you protect your direct mail ROI by contacting us at firstname.lastname@example.org.