Category Archives: CD and DVD Mailers

5 Tips: What Designers Know About Designing Mailers

Too often considerable resources are spent on the marketing literature, and yet the decision as to how it will be presented to your target market is made by the mailroom.    It is the mailer, and not the literature inside, that is on the front line speaking volumes about the quality of your firm.  Here are five great design tips that will enable your mailer to work as hard as your marketing materials:

1.  Paperboard mailers are exceptionally print friendly (unlike bubble mailers, boxes, and Tyvek envelopes).  So get bold about using that space to your company’s advantage.  Put your logo, your branding statement or icon, and even “Follow us on Twitter!”.   A generic approach is best if you anticipate that the mailer will have multiple uses.

2.  Alternatively, design your mailer specifically to create excitement about what’s inside.  For example:  “Your samples are here!” or “Valuable conference materials for Expo 2011!” .  This ensures your package gets opened first, rather than the recipient discovering it on their own only once they’ve opened it.

3.  Put business on the back, branding on the front.  In other words, put your mailing label on the back side of the mailer where the flap closes so that you have a full canvas on the front side to let your branding and marketing message shine.

4.   Putting your mailer in the mail will put your beautifully printed mailer through its paces, so avoid printing it in a dark color end to end (a.k.a. “full bleed).  If the mailer’s corners get bruised in any way, the white fibers in the paperboard will appear and distract the eye from the overall look of the package.

5.  QR Codes are all the range on billboards these days, so why not think of your mailer as a giant billboard for your company that just happens to be delivered to your client’s mailbox? Add a QR code to your mailer to tie your offline marketing efforts to your online ones.  You could feature a video of your CEO thanking your customer for their business!

Sari McConnell at smcconnell@conformerinc.com

Conformer to Speak at Envelope Manufacturers Conference

The executive team here at Conformer, Marvin, Sari, and I will be participating in a presentation and panel discussion at the Envelope Manufacturers Association fall conference.  The topic of discussion is a core value of our organization — innovation.

The presentation will center on the book Blue Ocean Strategy.  The book provides a “systematic approach to making the competition irrelevant and creating uncontested market spaces.”  The Blue Ocean Strategy argues that corporations can either battle in the shark infested waters of red oceans where products and services are equal and price is the primary differentiator, or we can create blue oceans where innovation opens uncontested markets.

Product innovation is not foreign to the envelope industry, but what Blue Ocean Strategy suggests is that companies need to create dramatic changes in their product line up whereby new offerings create altogether new markets, not simply improvements on existing products.  For example, two years ago we introduced the Conformer Media Mailer, a radical shift in product packaging designed to mail CDs and DVDs at dramatically lower postage rates.  Until our innovation came along, the primary packaging available to the media fulfillment industry were ubiquitous bubble mailers and small cartons.  Our Conformer Media Mailer enables low cost envelopes to compete directly with higher cost product categories. When you factor in halving the postage rate, our Conformer solution makes our “competition irrelevant”.

We are in the process of writing our presentation for the October 29 event.  We will share it with you in the coming weeks.  To learn more about the Conformer Media Mailer, click here.

by Bob Makofsky bmakofsky@conformerinc.com

Girls Gone Wild, Hot For Conformer

I was up late last night watching an exciting stage of the Tour de France when a Girls Gone Wild infomercial came on.  Suddenly, I thought (as any man would), “Wow, these girls get great postage rates thanks to Conformer.”

Whether you love or hate their product, smart distribution companies are paying less to mail DVDs than others because they’re using the Conformer Media Mailer.  As I reported in our white paper a few weeks back, the Conformer Media Mailer ships DVDs as automated flats, reducing postage costs as much as 145%.  Girls Gone Wild is now realizing postage savings of roughly $0.43 per unit shipped, based on the current postal rate increase.

OFFER: To receive a free sample of the Conformer Media Mailer, send your contact information to support@conformerinc.com with the subject line: “Media mailer sample.”

by Bob Makofsky bmakofsky@conformerinc.com

White Paper: Infinity Resources Cuts DVD Postage 145%

Easing Postage Pressures

How to Get in Shape and Optimize Savings

Executive Summary

●      After the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) restructured rates in May 2007, Chicago fulfillment company Infinity Resources, Inc. saw its postage costs increase 166% for media mailed in jewel cases, Amaray cases and Digipaks.

●      The Conformer Media Mailer, the only known solution capable of mailing these items as automated flats, reduces postage costs as much as 145%.

●      Combined with the Tension AutoPack solution, the patented system allows businesses to realize greater savings through improved labor productivity.

●      Infinity adopted this joint solution and is realizing postage savings of $0.43 per unit shipped, based on the May 2009 postal rate increase.

●      The Tension-Conformer solution is a viable alternative for companies mailing 10,000 units or more per year.

Continue reading

CD, DVD, and Game Shippers Take Brunt of USPS Increases

About a month ago I wrote about how companies mailing small, light-weight packages would see a significant increase in the May 2009 United States Postal Service (USPS) price increase. Hold on to your chair, the increase is roughly 30%. Here are the details –

Standard Mail Not-Flat Machinable, Mixed BMC –

2008 Per Piece – $1.032

2008 Per Pound – $0.733

2009 Per Piece – $1.311 (27% increase)

2009 Per Pound – $0.99 (35.1% increase)

Standard Mail Machinable Parcel, Mixed BMC –

2008 Per Piece – $1.007

2008 Per Pound – $0.733

2009 Per Piece – $1.279 (27% increase)

2009 Per Pound – $0.99 (35.1% increase)

The USPS had committed to annual postage price increases to match up with the Consumer Price Index along with the implementation of shape based postage. But, I suppose the devil is in the details. In reality this is the second year in a row where light-weight parcel shippers have seen huge rate increases.

Fortunately, it is possible to mail CDs, DVDs, and video games as USPS Automated Flats. Read on for relief.

Standard Mail Flats, Mixed ADC –

2008 Per Piece – $0.338

2008 Per Pound – $0.773

2009 Per Piece – $0.346 (insignificant change)

2009 Per Pound – $0.725 (insignificant change)

by Bob Makofsky

Flat Stanley Takes on a New Dimension

Have you ever heard of Flat Stanley? Flat Stanley, the storybook character, is something of a grade school celebrity.  As my mother read this book aloud to my son the other day, the parallels between the Flat Stanley story and the Conformer story just jumped off the page.  Sure, I think about envelopes more than your average mom, but hang with me here.

Flat Stanley by Jeff Brown

Stanley is a boy, but his new flattened form gives him amazing abilities.  He can be flown as a kite.  He can slip under unlocked doors.  He travels the world in an envelope.  Amazing!  And his brother becomes incredibly jealous.  Being a commodity kid with obvious limitations is no fun, especially when Stanley has access to so many new places.

Flat Conformer, expands to fit

Flat Conformer, expands to fit

Doesn’t this sound like the Conformer envelope story?  Compared to a commodity envelope, the Conformer has a superior construction that goes from flat to 1.5”.  This new form is a vast improvement over bulky expensive packaging solutions like bubble mailers and small boxes.  It packs flat and doesn’t hold excess air, which lowers freight and storage costs considerably.  And automated postal and insertion equipment simply adore the Conformer envelope because Conformer has changed its shape to optimally work with the post office and high-speed fulfillment centers.

And that’s where things get really interesting because, suddenly the Conformer envelope isn’t just an envelope.  It’s a packaging solution.  The Conformer media mailer is just the beginning of how a paper envelope takes on the form of a dramatically more cost-effective package.  Conformer is working on taking the mail-order pharma industry by storm.  It’s a whole new world for Conformer, doing so much more with less bulk…just like Flat Stanley!

Dead Space

Dead Space

In the end, Flat Stanley’s jealous brother Arthur restores Stanley to his original shape with a football air pump.  As for Conformer, we happily leave all the unproductive dead space to our competitors!

by Sari McConnell

Mail DVDs, CDs, and Now Blu-ray as USPS Flat

We had reported back in April of 2008 that under USPS pricing, mailing a 4-ounce CD in a jewel case by standard mail cost $1.36 in traditional packaging. Packed in a Conformer media mailer, postage drops to $0.52 as an automated flat. You can read more about our USPS approval and product launch here – Conformer Media Mailer First to Get USPS Green Light.

Nothing beats face time. As a result of standing side by side with operations folks and packaging engineers, we have developed a series of enhancements. Our in plant process is now largely automated utilizing our Conformer Media Tray along with an Auto Poly Bagger.

But our biggest success has been our ability to simplify the solution. We are now working to redesign our trays to fit CDs, DVDs, as well as Blu-ray. With the redesign, we can use one tray size and one polybag size to streamline the process.

Conformer Media Tray

Conformer Media Tray

by Bob Makofsky

www.conformerinc.com