Is Direct Mail Safe During the COVID-19 Pandemic?

By: Andrew Glover
July 20, 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed everyone’s priorities. People are concerned about their health, safety, and financial stability. One concern is if the virus can transmit through the mail. The WHO and CDC say that no coronavirus transmission has occurred from a newspaper, magazine, letter, or package. Sending mail pieces to prospects and members is still considered safe.

With so many people staying home currently, the mailbox is a direct line to your prospects. People are hungry for connection right now, so there is no better time to sink into your marketing efforts. But be sensible in doing this, and give messages of hope and relief.

Direct Mail is Still a Trustworthy Source

Reading reports of postal workers testing positive for the novel virus may have brought some worries that the pathogen may live on letters and packages, possibly exposing somebody to infection just from opening their mail. But the U.S. Postal Service has affirmed us that the mail is still safe.

Most organizations are still mailing at this time, but you are not alone if you have questions about direct mail. It’s critical to be ready with answers for your members. COVID-19 does not spread through the skin. It’s spread through the respiratory tract. Any contact with mail or packages is not a direct danger. Frequent hand-washing and good hygiene are the most crucial factors for mitigating any risk with envelopes, packages, or other contaminated surfaces.

Current Information from the CDC

The CDC’s current comment regarding the risk of COVID-19 from mail states, “There is still a lot that is unknown about COVID-19 and how it spreads. Coronaviruses are thought to be spread most often by respiratory droplets. Although the virus can survive for a short period on some surfaces, it is unlikely to be spread from domestic or international mail, products, or packaging. However, it may be possible that people can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes, but this is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads.”

After picking up your mail, wash your hands with soap and water for 20 seconds. Use a hand sanitizer with at least 60 percent alcohol if you don’t have soap and water nearby.

How to Market During COVID-19

It’s a good idea to mention the changes you have made to your organization regarding COVID-19 mitigation strategies. Times are changing, and your members will appreciate seeing you have made the appropriate adjustments.

But your message should not be centered around you. The focus should be on members or prospects and how your organization can help them. What can you offer your community that will help them through this time? How can you convey that without coming off as opportunistic? If it seems like you are capitalizing on a crisis, you will turn prospects away now and in the future. Educate, inspire, and maybe entertain your reader. Be sure you communicate with empathy. More than ever before, it’s essential to bring the human element to your marketing.

Where to Send Your Message

Many businesses have shut down as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and strict quarantine requirements. Your direct mail might not be deliverable if you targeted organizations that are not open to collecting it. Residential mail is a separate situation with its own hurdles. The guarantee that an individual will be at home to receive your mail has never been higher. However, many people are concerned about what they bring into their homes and mail may be quickly discarded. It’s critical you refine your mailing list but also provide a comforting message to encourage your audience to open your mailer instead of tossing it away.

Mail Inserting with Valtim During COVID-19

Valtim uses the perfect tools to complete your high volume and complex mail inserting jobs. High volume automated processes do not involve people touching the mail like a hand insertion method, which means it’s generally safer to use during the pandemic. Once we print your letter, we use our advanced mail inserting systems to quickly and accurately package your inserts into your envelope for mail delivery. We have five mail inserting machines, which run as quickly as 22,000 per hour.

Contact Valtim to get started on your direct mail marketing project during this pandemic.

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