Live From the National Catalog Forum: Catalogs Must Communicate With Congress

Nashville—If you don’t want to get whacked with high postal rates, you need to communicate to Congress what a price increase will mean to your business, according to Gene Del Polito, president of the Association for Postal Commerce.

Catalogers have to take it upon themselves, because the U.S. Postal Service does not understand the catalog business, Del Polito told attendees of the 2010 National Catalog Forum, presented here April 13-15 by the American Catalog Mailers Association. Also, he said, the USPS “doesn’t have a lot of credibility with Congress.”

What exactly should you be conveying to Congress? Translate how avoiding a rate hike will enable you to provide or save jobs, Del Polito said. “That’s the only thing that matters to Congress right now.”

The people who are paying the postage, hiring the workers—that’s who Congress needs to hear from, he added.

Del Polito had some harsh words for the Postal Service, which he said lives in “a world of “bureaucratic narcissism.”

Not only does the USPS not get the catalog industry, “it has shown an enormous resistance to learn,” he said. “You need to make them aware of the practical realities.”