Andrew Davidson

The cool-off in credit card mail that began in the winter of 2011 looks set to continue, at least for now, according to Mintel Comperemedia. In April, 260 million offers for new credit cards were received by US households, down 33 percent from the 390 million offers U.S. households received during April of last year. This is the lowest estimated monthly mail volume tracked in the past 25 months.

Nearly two years ago, Inside Direct Mail reported on a new bar code that surfaced in a mailing from Capital One Financial Corp. ("A New Code in Town," IDM February 2002), and its function is stumping industry experts even still. We've all seen Postnet codes, required by the U.S. Postal Service on bulk mailings and necessary for receiving postal discounts, and to a lesser degree the newer PLANET Codes, which track mailings en route through the postal system. But the bar code first seen on Capital One mailings, and now on those for Fleet National Bank (544FLEBAN0903), Advanta Bank Corp. (544ADVANT0903) and Children

Ask a random sample of consumers what type of direct mail they receive most often, and credit card mailings likely would be the top answer. According to Synovate, a market research firm that offers mail-tracking services for the credit card industry out of its Tarrytown, NY, office, credit card mail volume slowed its upward trend in 2002, tallying 4.89 billion efforts; but while that's a drop from the record high of 5.01 billion efforts in 2001, it's still enough mail to inundate the more than 291 million U.S. citizens—especially if you discount children. Given that credit card marketers have their work cut out for

Edited By Lisa Yorgey Pushing credit in Canada The number of credit card offers mailed to Canadian consumers in the first quarter of 2001 hit a new high of 45.8 million, reports Mail Monitor, a direct mail acquisition tracking service from BAIGlobal, a market research firm based in Tarrytown, NY. The tracking service reports that 73 percent of the 45.8 million offers mailed to Canadian consumers in the first quarter of 2001 were sent by U.S. credit card marketers, including Bank One, MBNA, Capital One and Providian. Despite the deluge of new card offers, Canadian consumer response is low and in sync with U.S.

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