Businesses within every industry benefit from using direct mail marketing. Some businesses may want to send information to an audience based on specific demographics, needs, or interests. In other cases, their message or offerings may be less specific, in which case they would benefit from reaching as many people as possible, regardless of who they may be.
When developing a direct mail strategy, one of the key decisions that need to be made is whether to target a specific demographic or saturate a geographic location. If your objective is to reach a local market or spread your message to as many addresses as possible, then using Every Door Direct Mail is an effective and affordable strategy for you to use.
Let’s look at what Every Door Direct Mail is, what the EDDM guidelines are, and an overall rundown on how to get started on EDDM.
What is Every Door Direct Mail?
Every Door Direct Mail, or EDDM, is a type of mailing service offered by the United States Postal Service that allows you to send direct mail to potential targeted customers without using a mailing list. By identifying the mail carrier routes you want to target, consumers and businesses can be reached based on the neighborhood or ZIP code they are located in.
EDDM is extremely affordable because it takes advantage of bulk mail postage discounts. These discounts are applied to EDDM campaigns because you or your EDDM provider handles all the mail sorting and packaging that the USPS would otherwise have to handle. Here is a step-by-step guide to help you get started with EDDM:
Getting Started on Your EDDM Campaigns
Getting started, you will want to determine the specific geographic area you want to target. This can be a neighborhood, city, or ZIP code. Because you do not need a mailing list for EDDM, the process is much different. Luckily, the USPS EDDM Mapping tool is a handy tool that allows you to see and choose carrier routes that best accommodate your marketing goals.
When viewing the carrier routes within the EDDM mapping tool, all you need to do is enter a ZIP code or address associated with the geographic area you’d like to target. It then shares key demographics associated with each route within your entered location so you can select the right audience based on household size, age, income, and ZIP code. Your EDDM mailers will then be delivered to each address on your chosen route.
A sample image of the USPS' EDDM mapping tool and EDDM cost calculator. This can give you a general idea of how certain routes have different costs.
EDDM Guidelines – What type of mail is EDDM Eligible?
Based on the USPS guidelines, EDDM is intended for flats such as postcards and newsletters or folded EDDM mailers like z-fold, gatefold, half-fold, or tri-fold brochures.
EDDM mail pieces need to be at least 10.5” long, or 6.125” high, or 0.25” thick and they cannot be larger than 15” long, 12” tall, and 0.75” thick. The USPS EDDM guidelines also require that no EDDM mail piece weighs more than 3.3 oz.
It’s also important to note that there are two types of EDDM to consider: EDDM Retail and EDDM BMEU (known as Business Mail Entry Unit.)
EDDM Retail is ideal for local businesses like restaurants, political campaigns, retail stores, small businesses, and realtors. For EDDM retail, no special mailing permit is needed, but there are specific requirements for EDDM retail, such as bundling all your EDDM mailers into stacks of 100 with your mailing slip on top, and you must mail EDDM flats. If you select an EDDM provider like Kingston Printing, they’ll handle the bundling and sorting for you. Also, the EDDM guidelines for EDDM retail set by the USPS state that you must send at least 200 mail pieces but are limited to 5,000 EDDM mailers per day per ZIP code.
EDDM BMEU is ideal for larger-scale marketing campaigns, and the EDDM guidelines require a Business Customer Gateway account and a bulk mail permit. However, if you go through an EDDM provider like Kingston Printing, you can use their account and permit. The EDDM guidelines for EDDM BMEU state that there are no volume limits on the size of the mailing, and multiple ZIP codes can be selected, making EDDM BMEU the perfect option for large-volume mailing campaigns. You can also mail EDDM folded brochures and flats when using BMEU..
EDDM Design Requirements – Designing your EDDM mailers to achieve the best EDDM results.
When putting together your EDDM campaign, you will need to make sure that your design fits within the EDDM design requirements. This includes setting your design up to meet the minimum and or maximum EDDM eligible sizes we discussed above.
Some popular sizes include 6” x 11” flats, 9” x 12” flats, 8.5” x 14 half-fold EDDM mailers, and 11” x 17” trifold EDDM mailers. However, there are plenty of other sizes to choose from. For help designing your EDDM mail pieces, feel free to contact us to take advantage of one of our Flat EDDM mailer or Folded EDDM mailer design templates.
While there are requirements for the design and EDDM mail piece size, there are also requirements for the size of the space where the mailing information will be placed on your EDDM mailers.
There must be a blank space left within your design that is at least 4” x 2.25” for the mailing information to be placed, typically in the bottom left on the back of your EDDM mailer. The mailing indicia can be placed within this blank space or in the top right on the back if no design elements are present.
On top of designing your EDDM mail pieces to be EDDM eligible, creating an eye-catching design and an intriguing call to action will help increase the effectiveness of your EDDM campaign. Feel free to contact us for a free EDDM design template, to help create the perfect design that follows all the EDDM guidelines. Or if you’re in need of additional EDDM design help, contact our designers today!
EDDM Routes – How to select the best EDDM audience.
When getting started on an EDDM campaign, not only is it important to follow all USPS regulations, but it’s also important that you select the right Every Door Direct Mail routes for your goals.
Before selecting your routes, ask yourself a few questions including:
- Who is your message intended for?
- What age group does your ideal audience fall under?
- Are you looking to target families, couples, people living alone, or everyone?
- Are you selling a product or service ideal for high income consumers?
- Does how far away your audience live from your business matter at all?
While there are limitations to how targeted an EDDM campaign is, you can select mailing routes that best match your answers to the above questions..
For example, if the age of your audience is important to your EDDM campaign goals, then when viewing the EDDM mapping tool, you can easily view the average age within a selected carrier route. You can also view the average household size, income, and more to target your ideal audience better.
Another thing to note is that you can also see how many residences and businesses are located within a given route. You can opt to target just residential addresses or residential addresses and business addresses. Knowing how many addresses are located within each route will help you determine how many EDDM mailers you will need and help you better align your campaign with your budget.
Is an EDDM Campaign Right for You?
EDDM Saves Money by Pre-Sorting Mail Pieces
Even with the rise in technology-driven direct mail marketing, electronic communications, direct mail commingling, and internet-based marketing, EDDM is still one of the most cost-effective ways for your business to reach a large geographically targeted audience.
Since you or your EDDM provider do all the heavy work of sorting the mail pieces and packaging for the USPS, costs are cut considerably compared to other bulk mailing options. And depending on your mailing list, it is typically much cheaper to use EDDM instead.
Will EDDM Help You Achieve Your Marketing Goals
Before you do anything, deciding what you want to gain from your direct mail marketing campaign is essential.
Once you have set your goals, such as generating more leads, engaging with an underexposed local market, or promoting a sale, then you can decide if EDDM is right for your business. It is also important to note that because EDDM reaches every household on a given USPS carrier route, depending on your products or services, it may be more beneficial for you to reach a more targeted audience. For example, if you are promoting organic dog food, it would be better to reach individuals who own a dog, while if you are promoting your restaurant’s grand opening, then using EDDM is a great marketing strategy as everyone can participate in visiting you.
So, How Do You Do EDDM?
Once you have your goals and budget in place, getting started on an Every Door Direct Mail campaign is easy. Plus, at Kingston Printing, our team of EDDM experts makes the entire process even easier and will help you every step of the way.
All you need to do is fill out the form on our EDDM services page and share with us the type of EDDM-eligible mailer you're interested in and what area you'd like to target. We'll then work with you on everything from designing your mailer and selecting the right mailing routes using the USPS EDDM mapping tool to printing and mailing your mailers to each address within your desired geographical location.
Working with a print and direct mail company experienced in EDDM can help ensure that your materials meet USPS requirements and that your entire campaign launches seamlessly. Click below to contact our EDDM experts today.
Contact Our EDDM Experts!