Trimming the Fat: Non Zip+4 Segmentation

In this era of ever increasing postal rates, figuring out who not to mail might be more important than figuring out who to mail.

One easy way to identify these names is to segment your non Zip+4 house file records.

For any number of reasons, these records could not be appended with the extra plus 4-digit zip code, thus making them more expensive to mail—if they even make it to your customer’s mailbox.

In order to figure out a contact strategy, be sure to keep in mind your offer and customer base. If you sell plants or seeds, or if your customers live in rural or small town areas, you might want to consider mailing these names as they could be some of your best buyers, making the expense worth your while.

If you sell modern furniture or have a large customer base living in urban areas, these names likely will not perform at or above your breakeven threshold and you might choose to omit them. As always, segmenting and testing is best.

Another idea to consider if the Non Zip+4 names on your file prove to be decent performers: pay for Address Correction Service, especially on your hotline names. Once these names get corrected, update your database and you should have a correct and highly qualified name.

Anna-Lisa Ulbrich is a marketing manager at San Rafael, CA-based catalog consultancy Lenser.

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