You’ve Got Green Mail!

Solomon Thimothy - September 7, 2008

you've got green mailLately it seems that consumers and businesses alike are striving to make every effort to preserve the environment. Maybe you’re an avid fan of recycling the soda cans and water bottles at home, or possibly your business has switched to sustainable printing options and is relentlessly finding ways to conserve energy usage. Either way, we are all trying to minimize our environmental footprint by making wise, conscious choices that require us to think of consequences beyond today.

If you’re a business owner who utilizes direct mail pieces for advertising, “green mail” is probably a phrase you’re all too familiar with. Maybe you’re still contemplating the “who, what, when and why” of green options. At the same time, have you given much thought to what your customers think of your advertising methods?

The 2007 Direct Mail and the Environment Survey, conducted by Pitney Bowes of DMNews, offered insight into the impact of direct mail from a consumer perspective “DM Survey”. 1,000 U.S. consumers were surveyed regarding their point of views about the environmental impact of direct mail. A surprising 48% of those surveyed believed that direct mail was responsible for more than 50% of public waste in the U.S. In truth, the Environmental Protection Agency states advertising mail is only accountable for 2% of the country’s waste! Not only did those surveyed overestimate the impact of direct mail as waste, but they also believed that it contributed to carbon dioxide emission right behind driving a 2007, 4-door, sedan for 1,000 miles a month.

As a business owner, how do you bridge the gap between assumptions and reality? Environmental concerns are here to stay and as long as you want your business to prosper and your customers to be happy, it is up to you to educate your clients. When you have an opportunity, let your customers know that your mailing lists are current and do not contain old addresses. Inform them that you’re organization is making efforts to be environmentally conscious. Ironically, direct mail is one of the most viable forms of advertisement, but sometimes it could be to your advantage to not assume this.

Join OneIMS in our commitment to environmental sustainability and educating consumers about efficient green mail practices.

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