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Mobile QR Codes on Your Promotion Pieces

Date: June, 2011 --

The USPS is starting to catch up with marketers with this new product, which conceivably could more efficiently drive traffic to your online offer. Sure, QR codes are neat on restaurant menus, in stores, and printed in magazine ads, but they’re not being used all that much. Now here’s a 21st century application to the 20th century letter that will get mobile phone users on your mailing list up to the offers you have online. 

The Postal Regulatory Commission has approved a USPS request for a Mobile Barcode Promotion. First Class Mail - letters, postcards and flats including nonprofit mail – will be eligible for a 3% discount if they bear the QR code, which must be two-dimensional. 

There are, of course, rules to follow to be eligible for this rate:

  • Customers must use electronic documentation through mail.dat, mail.xml, and postal wizard.
  • The mobile barcode can be printed on the outside of the envelope, or inside so long as it appears through the window, and must be readable by a mobile device.
  • The mailing must be used for marketing or educational purposes and the QR code must connect the material on the inside of the envelope to a web site with more information.
  • Newspapers that use a marketing advertisement would also be covered.
  • The e-documents for the program will be accepted starting June 26th for the incentive barcode.
  • If there are multiple clients in the mailing there must be a QR code for each.
  • The USPS wants a sample of the QR code on the mail piece for examination.
  • Mail pieces will be qualified through October 31, 2012.

Combined with a correct address and your marketing department’s targeting sophistication, the outside of the envelope, or both sides of the postcard, can link the recipient to your offer, or to your donation page. Be sure you have Data Services clean up your list before mailing. As you know, 15% of the US population changes their residence every year, and that’s only one of the reasons. People change marital status and their names without moving. The USPS and emergency services change street addresses for greater clarity, and approximately one million new addresses are created every year. What a country!