In a return to yesteryear, my family-my wife, our 17 year old son and his good friend traveled via car to Fort Walton Beach, Florida to spend Spring Break with my parents. When I was child, if we went anywhere for vacation we drove. Of course, I always had to write a paper on my travels, this was especially true if I missed any school.
Our trip was planned, we were going to spend 2 days on the open road with a little sightseeing while traveling to the Florida Panhandle. To be followed by 7-8 days on the ocean in the sun and another 2 days traveling back to our Wisconsin home, stopping along the way wherever we wanted.
Of course the 2016 National Postal Forum fell smack dab in the middle of my family vaction. After driving through Nashville on our way to Florida, I left my family after a couple of days and drove back to Nashville to attend the forum. So after driving some 3240 miles, here’s my report on the 2016 National Postal Forum.
There were over 3600 attendees, representing a good cross-section of the mailing industry this year. Over 100 workshops were offered on a variety of subjects from data & mentoring to multi-channel marketing & security. There was an exhibition hall featuring over 100 innovative exhibitors, by far the largest in the mailing industry.
Of course no highlight would be complete without touching on Postmaster General, Megan Brennan’s address. Postal reform is unlikely to come from congress this year. The theme of her remarks was very clear from the beginning, the Postal Service intends to be a digital player. She noted the Postal Service would be investing billions over the next several years that would bring about a “transformation of mail.”
A nationwide rollout of “Informed Delivery,” Postal customers will receive a daily email with images of mail pieces arriving in their mailbox that day. How cool is that? “Informed Delivery can be a launch pad into other channels. It gives the marketer the opportunity to attach a digital offer to the mail piece.”
Probably the biggest news for many was Post Master General Brennan announced the USPS would be filing a case with the Postal Regulatory Commission to allow 3 ounce, presorted automation compatible letter mail to mail at the 1 ounce rate. Who wouldn’t want to mail more for less?
A luncheon on Wednesday featured Olympic Gold Medalist Figure Skater Scott Hamilton a resident of nearby Franklin, Tennessee. He was full of energy and listening to his story of perseverance and courage brought tears to more than a few in attendance.
It was great seeing so many of AM Solutions vendor partners on the exhibit floor. I enjoyed spending time with my colleagues, customers and many industry friends. I’m looking forward to the 2017 National Postal Forum in Baltimore-But I think I’ll fly!
*Article Written by: Fred Schulze: VP Sales & Customer Care at AM Solutions