So you sent out a couple thousand invitation packages to your big event and two weeks later they all start pouring back into your mailroom because of insufficient postage or a flaw in the design that interferes in the post office’s ability to delivery. Now you have to scramble to save the event, which costs you time, money and reputation.

You could have avoided the disaster by simply working with the post office beforehand. The U.S. Postal Service has designated individuals whose job is to review and advise on such matters. They are called Mail Design Analysts. Find one in your neighborhood.

Preferably you should go to them before the piece is finalized and/or printed. If you’ve designed a postcard and not left adequate space around the address and enough room on the bottom for a barcode

, the only place your postcards are going is into the recycle bin.

You can also take a sample of what will be mailed for an estimate on postage. They will evaluate all the variables that make a difference – shape, size and weight – and tell you where you stand. That way you’ll know the ground rules and your piece will land right where you want it, when you want it.

Other Useful USPS Links

Designing Letters and Postcards for Automated Processing

Physical Standards for Commercial Letters and Postcards

Locate a Mail Design Analyst