The Pressure Is On Mailers
On the other hand, Hopkins said that while direct mail represents the largest potential growth market for pressure seal, it is not the product's only application. "Pressure seal is also used for payroll, accounts payable and accounts receivable purposes," he explained. "Many of the roles formerly played by traditional mailers have now been transferred to pressure seal."
The uses for self-mailers run the gamut from jury duty summons and college fundraiser announcements, to identification and membership cards. Day said that PrintXcel's new MediaMailer was developed to meet the specific needs of two of its distributors. "The product is constructed much like a mailer, but unlike a mailer, it is not run through a printer," she explained. "Most often, the product is hand-addressed or labeled and is typically used as a two-way product."
When asked about the potential profits that the self-mailer market offers, Hopkins stated, "Because pressure-seal orders are generally larger than most orders, there are large profits to be made, and, when paired with value-added products, there can be even larger-margin orders."
Day noted that self-mailers are still very profitable for distributors who can provide value to the end-user. "This includes gaining knowledge of the client's needs, printer considerations and postal regulations," she said.
Speaking of postal regulations, Hopkins said that it can be very challenging to keep up with the automation requirements that are frequently issued by the United States Postal Service (USPS). "Because the postal regulations change often, it becomes challenging to keep up with the new technology," he explained. Day agreed. "After many years of manufacturing mailers, one of our biggest challenges is currently found in reading through all of the new USPS postal regulations each time that another domestic mail manual is released," she said.
What can distributors do to remain competitive in the mailer market? "The key to distributors remaining successful in the mailer market is to approach the sale as a mailing solution," Day suggested. "For example, when the end-user decides to transition his or her software or hardware, the successful distributor will provide guidance in exploring alternative solutions that will meet the future needs of the client."