David Henkel

Perhaps QR Codes are that new bridge for consumers for offers, as they can be more personalized and relevant through mobile devices. "Right now, these devices are smarter than we are," says Susan Kelly, vice president of communciation management services for Xerox. "How do I use a QR Code to really connect [for prospects] when they really want to know something? How can I connect it with my product, my service, and be able to leverage that? It's very compelling."

QR codes. While they may look like an old promo gimmick from the alien film "District 9," everyone connected to direct mail is talking about them. They're the next big wave marketers appear to be jumping on. QR codes are everywhere: on billboards, printed ads in magazines, signs in cities, business cards, for-sale signs at homes ... and they're on envelopes and postcards, tons of them.

One of the newest and most intriguing ways marketers are integrating mobile with the traditional power of direct mail is through QR codes, or Quick Response codes. These two-dimensional barcodes can feature PURLs that drive users from printed material to the Web via smartphones. QR codes can turn a printed direct mail piece into an interactive mobile call to action, allowing static messages to become a quick-scan hyperlink to just about anything online.

Co-palletization. Destination entry. Commingling. Welcome to the complex world of direct mail, where there is a lot more to getting letters out the door. If you are like most busy marketers racing from one project to the next, juggling demanding deadlines and coping with tight budgets, you haven't had time to learn the ins and outs of the different postal options for mail campaigns.

Providing the most comprehensive and cost-effective services to clients is critical for direct mail service providers that want to add value in what continues to be a very competitive marketplace. Offering the latest in postal expertise and solutions is one very important way to add critical value to client solutions. Very soon that will mean getting approval from the United States Postal Service to be an Intelligent Mail® barcode (IMB) supplier.

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