Welcome to the Talon Mailing & Marketing December 2012 Newsletter.
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Helps The Town of Huntington Mail 60,000 Flyers in 24 Hours
Talon kept the postage cost under
15 cents per piece thanks to two postage sorting
The phone rang late in the day on a recent afternoon. On the line was A.J.
Carter, Public Information Officer for the Town of
Huntington. He needed help and he needed it fast.
Because of the massive storm Sandy, most homes in the Town
of Huntington were without power. Cell-phone towers were no longer working either. The Town needed to
communicate with residents as soon as possible and without most
individuals having electric and
reliable cell service A.J. knew exactly what to do.
With a population of over 200,000 people, A.J. wanted to use traditional
mail to reach every household in the 137 square-mile town. Talon rolled up
our sleeves and committed to getting the project completed and mailed
within 24 hours.
The town would run their printing department all night and send Talon
flyers the following morning. Talon's role would be to sort the mail for
maximum postage discounts, fold the flyers, tab for postage automation
discounts, sort and deliver to the Postal SCF facility all within 24 hours
of receipt of the printed materials.
The mailer was a bulletin containing vital information such as:
- Important phone numbers for assistance during the crisis
- A message from the Huntington Town Board
- Instructions & procedures for tree, tree limbs and yard waste removal
- Safety recommendations
- Portable Electric Generator Safety tips
With the flyer being sent to most homes in the community, Talon was able
to presort the mail to under $.15 per piece using these sorting
Saturation walk-sequence carrier route
SCF entry discounts
The low postage rate was a byproduct of our philosophy - our role is to
help clients reduce their direct marketing costs. That
includes finding the most efficient production methods, optimizing
the size and weight of mailing pieces and obtaining the lowest postage.
Many times, first-time customers comment that their in-house
mailings or former mailing provider did not get as low a postage rate as
we do. Often these first-time clients are quite surprised and delighted
that we achieve lower postage rates and save them substantial money on
Not only did we get the mail out with 24 hours, the post office came
through and delivered the pieces the very next day. Although the mailing
went out Standard rate (formally known as third class mail), it was
delivered the next day due to the barcode we sprayed on the pieces, the
dense sort we achieved and delivering it directly to the proper postal SCF
Obama's 'Big Data' Victory
By L. Gordon Crovitz, The Wall Street Journal.
Marketing politicians is now like selling
drinks. It involves filtering policies and voters through algorithms.
When the Obama campaign emailed supporters to join a
$40,000-a-ticket dinner in June at the New York home of actress Sarah
Jessica Parker, journalists at ProPublica noticed something odd. They
uncovered seven versions of the email solicitation for the fundraiser,
some mentioning a second fundraiser that night, a concert by Mariah
Carey, others that Ms. Parker is a mother, and still others that Vogue
editor Anna Wintour would be at the dinner.
Who got which email depended on "big data"—information about each
fundraising prospect and how different people react to different
messages. In this year's election, it looks as if the Obama team's use of
such data was one of its biggest edges over the Romney effort.
Some uses of big data were known before the election—for instance, the
Obama website was even more assiduous than online retailers like Best Buy
about dropping "cookies" on users' computers to gather
information about their online habits. Reporting since the election makes
clear just how important the role of data was in deciding the election.
Campaign manager Jim Messina pledged to "measure every single thing in
this campaign" and built an analytics department five times the size of
the 2008 effort. A Time magazine reporter got access to the data
scientists in the campaign's Chicago headquarters on the condition that
the reporter would keep mum until after the election. "What they revealed
as they pulled back the curtain," Time recently reported, "was a massive
data effort that helped Obama raise $1 billion, remade the process of
targeting TV ads and created detailed models of swing-state voters that
could be used to increase the effectiveness of everything from phone
calls and door knocks to direct mailings and social media."
According to the magazine, the campaign created a "single massive system
that could merge the information collected from pollsters, fundraisers,
field workers and consumer databases as well as social-media and mobile
contacts with the main Democratic voter files."
The campaign's "chief scientist," Rayid Ghani, had been at Accenture, where he co-wrote an academic paper describing work helping
companies that "analyze large amounts of transactional data but are
unable to systematically 'understand' their products." For example, Mr. Ghani helped grocers figure out why people bought orange juice by
reducing the product to attributes that could be analyzed by
algorithms—"Brand: Tropicana, Pulp: low, Fortified with: Vitamin-D, Size:
1 liter, Bottle type: plastic."
Marketing politicians is now like selling drinks. It involves filtering
polices and voters through algorithms.
The Obama campaign focused on data showing the "persuadability" of
voters. Multivariate tests identified issues and positions that could
move undecided voters, ProPublica said: "The persuasion scores allowed
the campaign to focus its outreach efforts—and their volunteer calls—on
voters who might actually change their minds as the result. It also
guided them in what policy messages individual voters should hear."
Big data give incumbents a big advantage, which seems to have surprised
the Romney team. The Obama campaign has used cookies to track its
supporters online since the 2008 election. It spent the past 18 months
creating a new, unified database, factoring in some 80 pieces of
information about each person, from age, race and sex to voting history.
(The campaign denied reports that it tracked visits to pornography sites
in its outreach algorithms.) The Romney campaign says it tried to match
the Obama campaign's collection and analysis of data but had to start
from scratch and had just seven months after the primaries.
What does this mean for you? Voters need to develop buyer-beware habits.
The era of politicians saying the same thing to all voters is over.
Campaigns aim to tell voters exactly what each wants to hear: data-driven
The Obama campaign deserves credit for its big win through the
sophisticated use of big data. As for regulators, they should understand
that the information genie will not go back into the bottle—whether
consumer information is used to sell orange juice or politicians.
You Practice Good Hygiene?
What we’re actually
referring to here is list hygiene.
You’re probably thinking to yourself,
“Why, yes, I shower daily, use deodorant, etc.” Good for you. (And good
for those around you!)
What we’re actually referring to here is list hygiene. List hygiene is a
data management practice that ensures your list is complete, verified and
free of duplicates and undeliverable information.
Consider the facts:
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, people in the U.S. move an average of
12 times in their lifetime. And, the U.S. Bureau of Labor reports that
people change jobs every 2 1/3 years. That’s a lot of address and email
changes to keep track of!
Email list hygiene
When it comes to email, you should strive to identify and remove bad
addresses, update changed email addresses and add new email addresses with
every eBlast you send. Reputation aside, poor list hygiene leads to
increased open and click-through rates. If you use a third-party email
provider, removing bad addresses can reduce your associated CPM charges.
Snail mail list hygiene
When it comes to USPS mailings, if you haven’t updated your mailing list
lately, a higher percentage of your direct mail will likely be
undeliverable or reach the wrong recipient. With rising postal costs and
shrinking budgets, cleaning up and maintaining your mailing lists just
makes good business sense.
Whether you use snail mail, email or both, without proper list hygiene,
you risk damaging your sender reputation, getting your emails blocked by
Internet service providers, and wasting a lot of money in undeliverables.
You make a large investment in your direct marketing programs. To get the
best return possible, always practice good hygiene.
Win Jets Tickets!
Enjoy a great day of Football!
We are giving away two tickets to see the New York Jets.
All you have to do to win is be the first telephone caller (please don’t
hit reply or send an email). Voice mail messages count so it's fine to
leave a message. Call Michael Borkan at (631) 667-5500 x 11. These
tickets are great seats!
Sunday December 23, 2012.
Jets vs. Chargers 8:20
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newsletter? Please let us know by email:
To learn more about our company, please visit our Web site:
www.talon.com or contact Michael Borkan at (631) 667-5500 x 11.
If you do not wish to receive the Talon Mailing & Marketing Newsletter
Talon Helps Town of Huntington Mail 60,000 Flyers in 24 Hours
Obama's "Big Data" Victory
Do You Practice Good Hygiene?
Mike Borkan's Links - Web sites you probably
View Samples of Our Work
Direct Mail Humor!
Talon welcomes the following new clients this month to our growing roster
Mike's Favorite Links:
Some interesting links...
printwhatyoulike.com - Lets you print the good parts of any web page while
skipping ads and other junk.
infogr.am - Make a beautiful, animated online chart in a few minutes.
Import data from MS Excel or CSV, edit with our online Excel compatible
spreadsheet. Embed your charts in articles or share on social networks.
piccsy.com - A Google Images-like image search engine, but just for cool
theinspirationgrid.com - A daily-updated gallery, an ever-expanding
collection of images to inspire designers, artists and photographers.
picmonkey.com - A genius piece of photo editing software: it’s easy, free
and fun. Simply take any photo from your computer that allows
you to drag any photo to the Picmonkey online editor and give it the extra
bit of sparkle it needs before you upload it to Facebook!
time.is - A very handy site. Lets you know how accurate your
computer's clock is. And provides time in 7
million different locations, synchronized with atomic clock time.
Did you know Talon offers the following services?
Click on the links below to see samples.
Direct Mail Humor!
Click on image below to enlarge.
Do you need help marketing to your clients? Talon can
help! Call Michael Borkan at 631-667-5500 x 11 to learn how to
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