MAY 2011





PCC logo graphic.

Focused on improving communication and promoting and enhancing the value of mail through the PCC Network, Postal Service senior leaders, including Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe and Deputy Postmaster General Ronald Stroman, reaffirmed their commitment to the success of Postal Customer Councils (PCCs).

Stressing one of Donahoe’s four key goals: “to improve the customer experience,” Stroman said, “We want — and need — to hear from you on how we both can be more successful. Your location in the most-valued area — at the grassroots — provides us with valuable information.”

Consumer and Industry Affairs Vice President Susan LaChance outlined responsibilities of her new department as well as the outreach strategy of the PCC program.

“My areas of focus are to improve customer relationships and address consumer concerns while providing business mailers with enhanced support and services,” she said. “We’ll achieve these goals through greater industry outreach and engagement with two-way dialog, educational tools and new networking opportunities.

“Working together, we can increase the value of the mail and grow the business,” she added.

Chief Operating Officer Megan Brennan discussed how the PCC network is a great way to identify and solve problems and communicate effectively with customers. She urged members to leverage their PCCs to promote and enhance the value of mail.

There are many opportunities for mailers to engage Postal Service management, according to Sharon Owens, acting manager of Industry Engagement and Outreach. “Participation in Mailers’ Technical Advisory Committee workgroups and speaking with Postal Service account managers and postmasters are great avenues for bringing issues to the attention of senior management.”

Tracey Dunlap, industry co-chair of the PCC Advisory Committee, also was on hand to talk about the committee’s responsibilities and 2011 projects, including communication webinars and educational podcasts.

Rounding out the session was a visit by Donahoe, who urged attendees to take advantage of the Forum offerings, including more than 130 workshops and networking opportunities such as the peer-to-peer roundtables.

PCC members were reminded that this year’s National PCC Day will be broadcast live Sept. 21 from Tampa, FL.



Prepaid Forever Priority Mail Flat Rate Packaging Cost Per Piece
Flat Rate Envelope $ 4.95
Legal Flat Rate Legal Size Envelope $ 4.95
Padded Flat Rate Padded Envelope $ 4.95
Small Flat Rate Box $ 5.20
Medium Flat Rate Box (two designs) $ 10.95
Large Flat Rate Box $ 14.95

Building on the simplicity of flat-rate shipping and the value of Forever postage, the Postal Service has introduced a shipping option that lets customers lock in postage at current prices, when using Prepaid Priority Mail Flat Rate packaging.

Designed to make it easier to do business with the Postal Service, Prepaid Forever Priority Mail Flat Rate packaging is the only prepaid packaging option currently available in the domestic shipping market.

“With Prepaid Priority Mail Flat Rate packaging, customers now have the convenience of prepayment, establishing an even simpler way to ship,” said Gary Reblin, vice president, Domestic Products. “It takes the overall value of flat-rate shipping to a new level.”

Prepaid Forever Priority Mail Flat Rate packaging is available for online ordering in packs of 3, 5, 10 or 25 at various retail price points. Delivery Confirmation service is included at no extra charge, and additional services, such as Signature Confirmation and insurance, are available when packages are shipped at retail locations.

Prepaid Forever Priority Mail Flat Rate packaging includes an address label with Forever postage, so there are no labels to print. “And with Priority Mail Flat Rate shipping, there’s no extra cost for packages weighing up to 70 pounds, no hidden fees or surcharges, and the packaging is environmentally friendly,” Reblin added.



Quick response barcode graphic.

A “quick response” (QR) barcode.

The Postal Service wants to show marketers how mobile barcodes can increase the value of mail, so it’s offering an upfront 3 percent discount this summer for integrating the technology into direct mail campaigns.

“Two-dimensional barcodes, which can be scanned or read by mobile smart phones, can increase response rates, improve campaign tracking and attract younger consumers,” said Tom Foti, manager, Marketing Mail. “They also demonstrate how integration of both offline and online marketing efforts blur the lines between the two channels.”

Customers who receive the special mailpieces can use mobile devices to scan the barcodes for more information about the product or service the mailing is promoting.

The Mobile Barcode Promotion runs July 1, 2011, through Aug. 31, 2011, and is applicable on Standard Mail and First-Class Mail letters and flats.

“We recognize that the online world will continue to grow and thrive,” said Foti. “So we want to make customers aware that mail can be an integral part of that communication and that online campaigns that use direct mail are more effective.”

Click here for more information on the incentive.



Photo of the new Priority Mail Large Flat Rate Board Game Box.
The new Priority Mail Large Flat Rate Board Game Box.

For board game enthusiasts and customers requiring a longer, narrower configuration for flat-rate boxes — it’s your turn. The Priority Mail Large Flat Rate Board Game Box has arrived.

Available online in packs of 25, the new flat-rate box can accommodate two average-sized board games. Postage is $14.95 for the Priority Mail Large Flat Rate Board Game Box — the same low price to any destination in the United States (and only $12.95 when shipping to military personnel at APO/FPO addresses). Postage for international shipping is $35.50 to Canada and Mexico, and $58.50 to all other countries.

“It’s perfect for board games and items requiring a longer, slimmer box to ship across the country or around the world,” said Gary Reblin, vice president, Domestic Products. “The board game box is a great addition to our portfolio of Priority Mail Flat Rate Boxes.”

The Priority Mail Large Flat Rate Board Game Box was added online at The Postal Store last month. To date, customers have ordered more than 1 million boxes.

“When you’ve got a great product, word gets around,” said Reblin.

Click here to order Priority Mail Large Flat Rate Board Game Boxes.



Commercial shippers seeking an economical solution for delivery of small packages have a new service available — Parcel Select Regional Ground.

Introduced in April, Parcel Select Regional Ground offers competitive pricing for high-volume business-to-consumer shippers. For deliveries of small packages within destination zones 1-3, Parcel Select Regional Ground can provide big savings for qualified commercial shippers.

“This new service is designed as a solution for e-commerce merchants looking to boost sales by offering free or discounted shipping charges for online purchases,” said Gary Reblin, vice president, Domestic Products. “It has tremendous appeal for commercial shippers requiring a cost-effective ground service for delivery of packages over shorter distances.”

Shippers choosing Parcel Select Regional Ground must have a customer commitment agreement with the Postal Service and meet annual volume commitments of 10,000 mailpieces. Also, each mailpiece must be machinable, weigh 5 pounds or less, measure 0.35 cubic foot or less, and use an Intelligent Mail package barcode or a Confirmation Services barcode. Click here for additional details and pricing information.

Delivery Confirmation service is included at no additional cost. Insurance, Signature Confirmation and Hold For Pickup services also are available.

Pricing is based on entry at designated Postal Service sectional center facilities or network distribution centers. Parcel Select Regional Ground is available for commercial customers who use electronic manifesting and pay postage through permit imprint.

For more information, commercial customers can contact their Postal Service account manager or the Office of Commercial Pricing at


Photo of a MailBack envelope used by Clover Technologies.
A MailBack envelope used by Clover Technologies.

It’s estimated there are more than 5 billion mobile devices in use throughout the world. And, if current trends continue, most of them will end up in landfills when they become obsolete or broken, instead of being recycled.

Clover Technologies and the Postal Service are proving there’s a better way: MailBack envelopes. These postage-paid envelopes allow anyone to ship small electronics to Clover’s recycling center, where they’re broken down into useable parts and then recycled.

The envelopes are available at more than 1,600 Post Offices. Since 2008, when the program began, Clover has received nearly 1 million units.


Photo of a personalized envelope with stamp.

With a variety of envelope formats to choose from, a distinctive postage design and a variety of font colors and sizes, customers can personalize envelopes with their name, company name, address, email or URL. No need to type a return address or affix postage — it’s all there on a Personalized Stamped Envelope.

Perfect for business or personal use, they make great gifts, too. The convenience of pre-stamped and preprinted return addresses costs just a little more than postage alone.

The envelopes are available at, by calling 1 800 STAMP-24 (1 800 782-6724) or by email at


Below are the dates for the next five National Postal Forum locations.

  • 2012: Orlando, FL (April 1-4, 2012)
  • 2013: San Francisco, CA (March 17-20, 2013)
  • 2014: Washington, DC (March 16-19, 2014)
  • 2015: Anaheim, CA (May 17-20, 2015)

Inside Scoop graphic: More than 10,000 Post Offices are participating in the lobby recycling program.



  • National PCC Day, Sept. 21, Tampa, FL



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NPF logo graphic.

At the recent National Postal Forum, the Postal Service gave special recognition to a group of customers for their continued — and creative — use of mail. These businesses are finding new ways to make the most of mail to help build business and strengthen the mailing industry.

The Strategic Business Development Award acknowledges companies that have kept pace with technological advances and have used innovation to improve operations and provide customers with a mail product that delivers increased value and business results. Recipients of this award were: BB&T Corporation, Fire Mountain Gems and Beads, HSBC North America, jcpenney, JPMorgan Chase, Netflix, and Vertis Communications.

The Creative Business Solutions Award honors companies that use the mail in new and different ways to help achieve their company’s business objectives — mail that stands out and gets results. Recipients of this award were: American Product Distributors, Inc.; Barnes & Noble, Inc.; DST Output; Kohl’s Corporation; PostcardMania; Proctor & Gamble Company; and Target National Bank.

The Corporate Business Achievement Award honors companies that use Postal Service products and services to deliver value and help strengthen and grow their businesses. Recipients of this award were: AAA Life Insurance; Applied Nutritional Research; CIGNA; Citi; Colony Brands, Inc.; Costco Wholesale Corporation; Department of Veterans Affairs Pharmacy Benefits Management Services; DISH Network; eBay, Inc.; General Electric Company; Humana Inc.; Johns Hopkins Pharmaquip; Neiman Marcus Group, Inc.; NetDirect Distribution, LLC; Office Depot; Potpourri Group, Inc.; Sixth Scents Products, Inc.; State Farm Insurance Company; Strategic Fulfillment Group; USAA; U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services; Verizon Communications, Inc.; and W.W. Grainger, Inc.

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