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Direct Mail

2017 Postal Facts

By | Automotive, Design, Direct Mail, Insurance, Mortgage, Uncategorized, USPS | No Comments

Postal FactsAccording to the Postal Facts 2017, they have over 508,000 career employees, over 227,000 vehicles and they processed and delivered almost 154,000,000,000 pieces of mail. That’s right…almost 154 BILLION PIECES OF DIRECT MAIL!

Their computer network is one of the world’s largest networks. There are nearly 32,000 facilities and they receive more than 12,000,000 legitimate emails a day delivered to more than 214,000 email accounts. Their communications network supports and maintains more than 145,000 desktop computers, 23,000 notebook computers, 81,000 printers, 12,500 smart-phones, 400,000 phone lines and 310,000 hand-held scanners.

They have 35 petabytes of storage capacity (which is equivalent to playing more than 88,700 years of songs on am MP3 player with no repeats). There are nearly 1,450,000 email messages blocked monthly due to viruses and more than 210,000 blocked due to content.

More than 381,000,000 credit and debit card transactions are processed annually through their IT systems in Post Offices and through www.usps.com. They also had 10,000,000,000 page views on www.usps.com.

After seeing those numbers, have you ever wondered what a day in the life of the U.S. Postal Service is like? Below are some average numbers for just ONE day in the life of the U.S. Postal Service according to their“Just one day in the life of the U.S. Postal Service by the numbers” post.

  • 235.2 million — revenue received in dollars
  • 160.2 million  — dollars paid to postal employees in salaries and benefits
  • 506.4 million  — number of mailpieces processed and delivered each day
  • 21.1 million — average number of mailpieces processed each hour
  • 351,656 — average number of mailpieces processed each minute
  • 5,861 — average number of mailpieces processed each second
  • 200.4 million  — pieces of First-Class Mail processed and delivered
  • 7,131 —  number of letter carriers who deliver mail entirely on foot — The USPS Fleet of Feet
  • 54,490 — number of address changes processed
  • 3,748 — number of addresses added to our delivery network
  • 4.6 million — number of people who visit usps.com
  • $2.7 million —  dollar amount of online stamp and retail sales at usps.com
  • 1.5 million — number of Click-N-Ship labels printed
  • 297,004  — number of money orders issued
  • 0 — tax dollars received for operating the Postal Service

Here is a look at their Fiscal Year 2016 Data

  • 71.4 billion — 2016 operating revenue
  • 153.9 billion — number of mail pieces processed and delivered
  • 47 — percent of the world’s mail volume handled by the Postal Service
  • 1.9 billion — dollar amount paid every two weeks in salaries and benefits
  • 508,908** — number of career employees
  • 130,881** — number of non-career employees
  • 31,585 — number of Postal Service-managed retail offices
  • 227,896 — number of vehicles — one of the largest civilian fleets in the world
  • 16.6 million — number of address changes processed
  • 13.5 billion — total retail revenue
  • 877.4 million — total number of retail customer visits
  • 24 — percent of retail revenue from alternative access channels
  • 1.7 billion — total number of visits to usps.com
  • 280 million — total Postal Store revenue on usps.com
  • 564 million — number of Click-N-Ship labels printed
  • $1.3 billion — total revenue, in dollars, from postage on Click-N-Ship labels
  • 90.3 million — number of money orders issued
  • 5,989,439 — number of passport applications accepted at post offices
  • $149.7 million — total revenue, in dollars, from passport applications
  • $440.2 million — amount in revenue from 2,835 postal Self-Service Kiosks
  • 1.1 million — number of new delivery points added to the network in 2016
  • 156.1 million — total number of delivery points nationwide
  • 74 — Megan J. Brennan, 74th Postmaster General
  • 0 — tax dollars received for operating the Postal Service
*all information based on Fiscal Year 2016 data, unless otherwise noted
**as of Sep. 30, 2016

Visit www.usps.com for more information.

2018 Postal Holidays

By | Direct Mail, Insurance, Mortgage, USPS | No Comments

Closed

Here is a list of the 2018 postal holidays. Post Offices will not be open and there will be no mail delivery on these dates.

Please use this to plan ahead for your direct mail campaigns. We will send you multiple reminders leading up to these dates. 

2018 USPS Mail Holidays

  • Monday, January 1st – New Year’s Day
  • Monday, January 15th – Martin Luther King Jr. birthday
  • Monday, February 19th – Washington’s Birthday (observed)
  • Monday, May 28th – Memorial Day
  • Wednesday, July 4th – Independence Day
  • Monday, September 3rd – Labor Day
  • Monday, October 8th – Columbus Day
  • Monday, November 12th – Veterans Day (observed)
  • Thursday, November 22nd – Thanksgiving Day
  • Tuesday, December 25th – Christmas Day

Direct Mail Custom Branded Marketing Portal

By | Automotive, Design, Direct Mail, Insurance, Mortgage, USPS | No Comments

Influence Direct recently launched another national corporate program utilizing it’s highly successful branded marketing portal.  Since 2016, Influence Direct’s marketing portal solution has allowed companies with a large corporate footprint to provide employees with approved marketing products to use in their marketing program for client retention and acquisition programs.  This solution allows marketers to produce materials such as letters, postcards, snap packs, business cards, and marketing flyers all with the click of a button. These materials can be fully customized based on the individual needs of each client’s specific marketing piece.

Once materials are approved, users of Influence Direct’s marketing portal can go from logging in the website to checking out their job for printing and delivery in 9 simple steps:

  • Step One: Simply log in to our Web2Print site.
  • Step Two: Browse to the product you wish to purchase
  • Step Three: Select any attributes for the product
  • Step Four: Upload a list (for products that require a mailing list)
  • Step Five: Verify that all fields are correct
  • Step Six: Click “PDF Preview” to generate a PDF live proof
  • Step Seven: Insert any special instructions, fill out our approval form, and add the job to your cart
  • Step Eight: Give you job a name
  • Step Nine: Check out the job

If you would like more information on this service, contact us today for a free demo.

Mortgage Rates Still Low After Slight Increase

By | Direct Mail, Insurance, Mortgage, USPS | No Comments

Rates may be on the rise, but it’s still a great time to refinance. Many of our clients have been sending out more direct mail lately due to these rates.

 

“The most popular mortgage rose to its highest level since late June, after stalling for a month and a half near a record low.” says Holden Lewis in an article posted from Bankrate.

 

According to Freddie Mac, as of September 15th, 2016 rates are as follows:

  • 30-year fixed-rate mortgage (FRM) averaged 3.50 percent with an average 0.5 point for the week ending September 15, 2016, up from last week when it averaged 3.44 percent. A year ago at this time, the 30-year FRM averaged 3.91 percent.
  • 15-year FRM  this week averaged 2.77 percent with an average 0.5 point, up from last week when it averaged 2.76 percent. A year ago at this time, the 15-year FRM averaged 3.11 percent.
  • 5-year Treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) averaged 2.82 percent this week with an average 0.4 point, up from last week when it averaged 2.81 percent. A year ago, the 5-year ARM averaged 2.92 percent.

 

 

Rates are still historically low when looking at the fluctuation in rates from 1971 to now. Looking back at January of this year, rates were at 3.87%, so 3.50% is still a great rate to refinance into. If you are interested at looking at the rates from 1971 to now, Freddie Mac has a great historical chart to look at.

 

Lets take that into consideration:

  • John Doe has a $200,000 mortgage.
  • At a 4.0% rate, his P&I payment would be roughly $955
  • At a 3.50% rate, his P&I payment would be roughly $898
  • While the savings is only $57 a month, over the life of the loan he could save over $20,000

     
I liked this quote from The Mortgage Reports that I read earlier this month: “More than 8.7 million U.S. homeowners are potentially eligible to refinance. And, if you’re buying a home, it’s a good time to be looking. Because of how mortgage rates have dropped, if you could afford a $400,000 home in December, today, you can afford a home for $427,000 — an increase of 7% to your purchasing power.”

2016 Postal Facts

By | Automotive, Design, Direct Mail, Insurance, Mortgage, Uncategorized, USPS | No Comments

Postal FactsThe post office has been around for over 2 centuries and has changed significantly. According to the Postal Facts 2016, they have over 490,000 career employees and over 214,000 vehicles and they processed and delivered over 154,000,000,000 pieces of mail. That’s right…over 154 BILLION PIECES OF DIRECT MAIL!

Their computer network is one of the world’s largest networks. There are nearly 32,000 facilities and they receive more than 11,500,000 legitimate emails a day delivered to more than 214,000 email accounts. Their communications network supports and maintains more than 145,000 desktop computers, 23,000 notebook computers, 81,000 printers, 12,500 smart-phones, 112,000 phone lines and 310,000 hand-held scanners. They have 35 petabytes of storage capacity (which is equivalent to playing more than 88,700 years of songs on an MP3 player with no repeats). There are nearly 1,300,000 email messages blocked monthly due to viruses and more than 210,000 blocked due to content. More than 381,000,000 credit and debit card transactions are processed annually through their IT systems in Post Offices and through www.usps.com. They also had 1,500,000,000 page views on www.usps.com.

After seeing those numbers, have you ever wondered what a day in the life of the U.S. Postal Service is like? Below are some average numbers for just ONE day in the life of the U.S. Postal Service according to their “Just one day in the life of the U.S. Postal Service by the numbers” post.

  • 227.1 million — revenue received, in dollars
  • 5.9 million  — dollars paid to postal employees in salaries and benefits
  • 509 million  — number of mailpieces processed and delivered each day
  • 21.2 million — average number of mailpieces processed each hour
  • 353,000— average number of mailpieces processed each minute
  • 5,890 — average number of mailpieces processed each second
  • 206 million  — pieces of First-Class Mail processed and delivered
  • 7,184 —  number of letter carriers who deliver mail entirely on foot — The USPS Fleet of Feet
  • 122,000 — number of address changes processed
  • 3,630 — number of addresses added to our delivery network
  • 4.1 million — number of people who visit usps.com
  • 758,356 —  dollar amount of online stamp and retail sales at usps.com
  • 1.5 million —  amount of money spent on postage for Click-N-Ship labels
  • 146,850—  number of Click-N-Ship labels printed
  • 306,930  — number of money orders issued
  • 1.5 million —  dollars spent at self-service kiosks in Post Office lobbies
  • 0 — tax dollars received for operating the Postal Service

Visit www.usps.com for more information.

Direct Mail Is Not Dead

By | Automotive, Design, Direct Mail, Insurance, Mortgage, USPS | No Comments

“Research shows that 41% of people over 65, don’t use the internet at all. For marketers, that’s a huge segment that can’t be targeted by email or social media.” says Scott Taylor in an article he wrote for the Huffington Post.

A lot of people have been saying that direct mail is dead with all of the social media and internet marketing. I read an interesting article from the Huffington Post and thought I would share a little from it:

“Are you part of the 33% who find direct mail the most effective way to remember a product? How about the 79% of consumers who will act on direct mail immediately? Or maybe you’re part of the 74% of consumers who can’t wait to find out what’s in their letter box? If so, then no doubt you’re already well aware that direct mail is far from dead.

With the online consumer having an attention span of around eight seconds (yes, less than a gold fish), the online landscape exploding into a fierce battle of the brands and email marketing failing to hit targets for many businesses across the country, it may be time to the consider bringing direct mail marketing back into the fold of your strategic marketing plan.

If you’re still skeptical of the results direct mail can harness, here are five reasons why direct mail is very much alive and kicking.”

Click Here to read the full article that Scott Taylor wrote for the Huffington Post

Click Here to follow Scott Taylor on Twitter.

Mortgage Rates Have Hit a New Low For 2016

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Mortgage rates have hit a new low for 2016 according Freddie Mac. This record low for the year matches the low from February 2015. “Low mortgage rates and a positive employment outlook should support a strong housing market in the second quarter of 2016” says Freddie Mac.

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  • 30-year fixed-rate mortgage (FRM) averaged 3.59 percent with an average 0.5 point for the week ending April 7, 2016, down from last week when they averaged 3.71 percent. A year ago at this time, the 30-year FRM averaged 3.66 percent.
  • 15-year FRM this week averaged 2.88 percent with an average 0.4 point, down from last week when it averaged 2.98 percent. A year ago at this time, the 15-year FRM averaged 2.93 percent.
  • 5-year Treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) averaged 2.82 percent this week with an average 0.5 point, down from last week when it averaged 2.90 percent. A year ago, the 5-year ARM averaged 2.83 percent.

Example: Let’s say you are in the market to purchase a home that costs you roughly $225,000. Your principal and interest payment could be as low as:

  • 30 Year Fixed: $1,022
  • 15 Year Fixed: $1,541
  • 5-Year ARM: $927

With rates this low, of course mortgage applications are up. According to Mortgage Bankers Association, The Market Composite Index, a measure of mortgage loan application volume, increased 2.7 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis from one week earlier. The refinance share of mortgage activity increased to 54.5 percent of total applications from 52.4 percent the previous week.

If you have taken a break from direct mail, now is the time to get back into it. Take a look at our mortgage direct mail page for ideas. There are many letters, snap packs, postcards and more

New FHA Mortgage Insurance Rates

By | Direct Mail, Mortgage, USPS | No Comments

Last week I posted a blog about the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) lowering its high fees for mortgage insurance. This was confirmed by Mortgagee Letter 2015-01 for FHA loans with case numbers issued on or after January 26, 2015. For the majority of buyers, the rate will reduce from 1.35% of the loan amount to 0.85%, which is a pretty hefty reduction.

The letter communicates revised annual MIP rates for FHA Title II forward mortgages and provides opportunity for cancellation of existing case numbers in order to utilize the MIP rates contained in the ML.

Below is an example of the savings one would have:

A $300,000 loan with the minimum 3.5% down payment leaves a loan amount of $289,500.

Loans Closed Prior to January 26, 2015
$289,500 x 0.0135 = $3,908.25                                   $3,908.25 / 12 Months = $325.69

Loans Closed Prior to January 26, 2015
$289,500 x 0.0085 = $2,460.75                                   $2,460.75/ 12 Months = $205.07

That’s a total savings of $120.62 per month just in their mortgage insurance! That does not even include the savings that they will have when lowering their interest rate also! If they went from a 4% rate down to a 3.5% rate, that’s another $82.13 in savings a month for a total monthly savings of $202.75!

There will be a substantial amount of people that will love saving money like this. We already have clients marketing these FHA mortgage holders as of this week with direct mail. We have many letters and snap packs that would be a great fit for this offer.

Head over to our contact page and send us an email or give us a call today so we can help you fill your pipeline with FHA prospects!

FHA Mortgage Insurance Lowered Helps FHA Direct Mail

By | Direct Mail, Mortgage, USPS | No Comments

According to the Los Angeles Times, on Wednesday January 7, 2015, President Obama said that the Federal Housing Administration will lower its high fees for mortgage insurance, a bid to encourage more purchases by first-time and middle-income home buyers. There has been an increase in FHA premiums since 2011. The increase has been in place to offset losses caused by defaults on mortgages it backed.

President Obama said Wednesday January 7, 2014 that the FHA will lower its fees from 1.35% to 0.85% of the total loan amount to encourage more purchases by first-time and middle-income home buyers.

According to CNN, the typical first-time homebuyer will save $900 a year on their mortgage payments. Existing homeowners who refinance into an FHA loan will see similar savings. They also stated that home values are on the rise, the job picture is improving and foreclosures have fallen to their lowest level since 2006.

FHA loans require tiny down payments compared to other loans, and the credit requirements are night as tight. More details on this can be found here on the Making Homeownership More Accessible and Sustainable Fact Sheet.

With all of this said, now is the time to start back your FHA direct mail campaigns. What a way to start 2015 right? FHA has been a tougher mortgage product to offer with its hefty insurance premiums. As of right now the upfront premium is not changing. With the annual premium changing, now is the time to start back mailing these FHA mortgage holders and allow them to start saving.  Keep in mind, rates are still at historical lows and that will eventually change.

Influence Direct Overview

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We just completed our products and services overview booklet. If you have any questions, feel free to contact us.

Influence Direct puts into action 40 years of combined direct marketing experience to provide our clients with a remarkably strong return on investment.  Our direct mail background spans major industries such as mortgage, banking, insurance, investments, automotive, retail, and business to business just to name a few.  We have at our disposal every tool needed to create any type of direct mail program imaginable.

We can print and mail just about anything such as snap packs, letters, postcardsenvelopes, etc.

You name it, we can do it!