Population Statistic: Read. React. Repeat.
Friday, October 30, 2021

Bleeding cash from a lower volume of hard-copy message deliveries, the U.S. Postal Service is, paradoxically, doubling-down on paper: Post offices have started selling Hallmark greeting cards.

Of the 7 billion cards [sold in the U.S. annually], about 4 billion are mailed, accounting for about 2 percent of total mail volume, said Robert F. Bernstock, president of mailing and shipping services for the Postal Service.

“If we can get some energy behind greeting cards, which are incredibly linked to the mail, what better place to sell them and merchandise them than at our post offices?” Bernstock said.

A Postal Service study confirmed that customers think selling greeting cards at post offices is appropriate and that they would buy them there, Bernstock said. The goal is for the cards to help boost postal retail sales by 30 to 40 percent.

This is actually a very good idea, completely synergizing complimentary goods and services. I’m surprised that it took this long to happen. I do think a 30-40 percent revenue amp is highly optimistic, though. For that to happen, people will have to think of the post office as a destination for holiday/event shopping, i.e. making a one-stop trip to buy a card, personalize it, address it, and mail it off. Not sure anyone behaves that way — they’re more likely to head to the post office for the usual shipping purposes, and then impulse-buy a birthday card or two for later use.

All that’s assuming you don’t just shoot off an e-card instead.

by Costa Tsiokos, Fri 10/30/2009 09:14 AM
Category: Business, Creative, Society
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