Direct mail is green, but in today’s world climate concerns are on not only consumers’ minds but marketers too. In many cases they classify direct mail marketing as not green, but they are wrong. There are many ways direct mail is green. Let’s look at the environmentally responsible direct mail practices you can implement today.
Green Direct Mail Options:
1. List Hygiene –
Keep your mailing lists clean and up-to-date. Eliminate bad addresses, update old addresses and drop uninterested recipients to help reduce your environmental impact by eliminating paper, ink and energy used to produce undeliverable pieces. It saves you money too.
2. Design with Green in mind –
Design your mail piece to minimize the environmental impact such as:
- Choose recycled paper with high post-consumer content.
- Select papers certified by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) or other sustainability organization.
- Use the lightest weight paper possible.
- Choose a format that requires less paper.
- Print on both sides wherever possible.
- Pick a size that fits efficiently on a press sheet.
- Avoid plastic envelopes.
3. Streamline production –
Take advantage of available technology to reduce waste such as:
- Apply predictive list models to target a smaller, more specific audience who is more likely to respond to your offer.
- Utilize production methods that reduce print overruns, waste allowances and in-process waste so that you only print what you need.
- Take advantage of print-on-demand technology instead of printing large quantities and storing them until needed.
4. Encourage recycling –
Although direct mail generates only 2 percent of all U.S. municipal waste, consumers generally view unsolicited mail as wasteful. Those same consumers view recycling of mail more positively.
- Encourage recipients to recycle by including a “please recycle” logo.
- Make it easier for them to recycle. Consider including recycling instructions or directions to the nearest recycling center.
- Let customers know what you are doing to recycle and be more eco-friendly.
5. Plant Trees –
There are many organizations in the United States that plant trees such as the National Forest Foundation, The Nature Conservancy, American Forests, and many more! Since trees are a renewable and farmed resource we can help the planet and offset our consumables.
Did you know that in a Pitney Bowes study they estimate the CO2 per mail piece and compare mail with everyday household activities? So, how does mail rank? Consider this: running a single refrigerator for a year is equivalent to the creation and delivery of 5,000 letters, taking a 2 minute shower is equivalent to receiving 40 letters, running an electric water heater for a year is about the same as 20,000 letters received.
In addition to mail’s small environmental impact, it is made from an increasingly renewable resource, trees, and can be recycled. In fact, sustainable forests and their related products are increasing in developed countries despite growth in population and economic activity.
If you have any questions contact us today. We are glad to help!