Dumont, N.J.

Amid tighter budgets and higher postal rates, more direct mailers are pondering whether or not to test the self-mailer format. "I think direct mail budgets (and client requests) have been trending toward smaller, more cost-efficient formats for some time, well over a year," states Steve Penn, CEO and executive creative director of Penn Garritano Direct Response Marketing in Minneapolis.

Because of today's challenging economic climate, consumers are time-crunched and cash-strapped. They not only have less time to read their direct mail and e-mails, they also are less willing to part with their money. These are significant hurdles for marketers who rely on direct mail and e-mail channels for building revenue.

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