People make postage mistakes all of the time, from addressing letters to the wrong house number to forgetting to include a return address…
However UKIP has recently been “outed” for making one of the most embarrassing postage mistakes of all – failing to pay enough postage!
UKIP has been made to apologise, in a mishap where headhunting letters had been sent to opposition councillors, but did not pay sufficient postage for them. The party had attempted to send letters to members of Canterbury Council, inviting them to join its ranks. However instead of receiving their letters, some councillors actually received cards saying their post was being held because the sender had not attached enough stamps.
Conservative councillors were apparently left in fits of laughter after they visited the Post Office and paid the £1.20 fees to collect their letters, only to find they were from UKIP.
David Hirst (formerly Conservative), now the leader of UKIP on the Canterbury city council stated it was considered ‘standard practice’ to post our headhunting letters via direct mail, but admitted that UKIP volunteers had made errors that could have been avoided by simply remembering to attach the correct number of stamps. He stated that the party’s volunteers that made the postage mistakes had failed to put big enough stamps on the letters.
Whilst these things do happen from time to time, if companies and organisations continue to make mistakes over and over again, there is only so long customers will put up with it. Here we have shared a few common postage mistakes so you can avoid making them yourself.
Mailing irregular shaped direct mail without considering the postage cost
Different size letters and packages vary in costs. If you have designed a piece of direct mail that has an irregular shape, you must consider that it could end up costing you more to send in postage. Even if the direct mail isn’t overly large, if it does not fit the standard measurements, you will be required to ‘size up’ and pay more.
Failing to check the weight
Not only do you need to consider the size of your direct mail, but also its weight. If it exceeds the weight allowed for a standard postal service e.g. 1st class, you will end up paying significantly more in postage costs. This is definitely something you need to consider when designing direct mail.
Not personalising direct mail
Whilst failing to personalise your direct mail won’t stop it from being sent (providing the address is clear) it may prevent it from being opened by the recipient. If you do not use the recipient’s name on the envelope, then it will simply make your direct mail look like junk mail. People are much more likely to open a piece of direct mail if it is addressed to them.
Not paying enough postage
Finally we have the mistake that UKIP made, not paying enough postage for their letters. The problem with this is that they will not be delivered to the intended recipients. Instead they will either remain at the Post Office, waiting to be picked up and paid for by the recipient or mailed back to you with a big, nasty ‘insufficient postage’ stamp that will prevent you from being able to send out the letters in the same envelopes; wasting a significant amount of money.
All of these direct mail issues could easily be avoided by working with a professional company like Baker Goodchild. We have years of experience in direct mail and can handle all aspects of it for you, so you’ll never have to worry about making costly or embarrassing mistakes again!
If you have any questions about print, mail & post please call Baker Goodchild on 0800 612 1972.
Image Credit: Donkey Hotey