Tag Archives: CD

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

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

Standard Mail Price Up 14% from 2008

New Standard Mail pricing implemented today, May 11th, 2009 show significant increases on flats, NFMs, and Parcels.  Hardest hit are customers shipping light weight packages like CDs, DVDs, and video games.

Under last years rates, shipping a 4 ounce DVD in a bubble mailer or corrugate box via standard mail would have cost $1.11.  Today that same parcel would cost $1.27.  The real shocker comes when you look back a few years.  That same package in 2006 cost $0.42.  Today’s rate is 205% higher.

There is hope however.  Conformer released the Conformer Media Mailer, capable of shipping CDs, DVDs, Blu-ray, videos, and other small light weight objects as flats.  Under new rates implemented today, a 4 ounce flat would cost $0.52, saving $0.75 per unit.  For further details, click here and here.

Rate Comparison 2006 2007 2008 2009
Standard Mail
Parcel – 4 Ounces $ 0.42 $ 0.95 $ 1.11 $ 1.27
$ Increase from previous year na $ 0.53 $ 0.16 $ 0.16
% Increase from previous year na 128% 17% 14%
% Increase VS. 2006 Rate na 128% 167% 205%
NFM – 4 Ounces na $ 0.80 $ 0.90 $ 1.04
$ Increase from previous year na na $ 0.10 $ 0.14
% Increase from previous year na na 13% 15%
% Increase VS. 2006 Rate na na na na
Flat – 4 Ounces $ 0.35 $ 0.46 $ 0.47 $ 0.52
$ Increase from previous year na $ 0.11 $ 0.01 $ 0.05
% Increase from previous year na 32% 2% 10%
% Increase VS. 2006 Rate na 32% 34% 48%

The above table is an excerpt from a broad analysis of the rate increases.  For a full report, send me an email.

by Bob Makofsky bmakofsky@conformerinc.com

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


Conformer Media Mailer First to Get USPS Green Light

The Conformer Media Mailer is the first to get the USPS ‘green light’ to ship as an automated flat. It’s quite an accomplishment – given the strict requirements imposed by the postal service – and one that only Conformer Products can claim. Saving $0.84 in postage per package is virtually unheard of, and the direct mail industry is responding.

Under the upcoming rate increase, mailing a 4-ounce CD by standard mail will cost $1.36 in traditional packaging. Packed in a Conformer media mailer, postage will drop to $0.52 as an automated flat.

Last year, direct-mail marketing companies faced huge challenges, not the least of which was finding solutions to escape escalating mail costs under the new shape-based postal system enacted by the U.S. Postal Service (USPS).

Now, another price hike is slated for May 8, 2008, which will further widen the cost gap between automated mail, like letters and flats, and non-automated parcels. The latest move is intended to motivate companies to shift mailing practices toward more automation-friendly options.

It’s no surprise Conformer was the first to receive the USPS stamp of approval since the company is known for rigorous research and development to ensure products meet the demands of both customers and the postal service.

“We invested an enormous amount of time and attention to make sure these mailers would pass all kinds of tests,” said Marvin Makofsky, president of Conformer Products. “Our products work with the machinery at the post office and in just about any mailroom business environment: high-speed automation, semi-automated and manual. Absorbing the higher postage is tough enough; we didn’t want our solution to require an equipment upgrade.”

Businesses that haven’t already changed the way they send out media, like DVDs and CDs, have seen postage costs escalate more than 300%, according to Makofsky. Companies that mail large volumes of lightweight objects were among the hardest hit under the new USPS system.

According to Makofsky, “The best way for fulfillment companies to sidestep the steep cost of mailing a parcel is by moving toward automated flat packages, which can cut postage costs in half.”

Conformer Products are designed to solve problems, and the Conformer Media Mailer addresses two challenges: It allows organizations to take advantage of pricing incentives for automation-friendly mail – saving up to 62% in postal costs – and companies can continue to use equipment and processes as they did prior to shape-based postage.

About Conformer Products is a leading innovator of envelopes, mailers, presentation folders and portfolios. Founded in 1972, the company’s product line uses no more material than is absolutely necessary, dramatically reducing mailing costs under the new USPS rate restructure. By “pushing the envelope,” CEP’s award-winning products have been credited as among the biggest office product breakthroughs in decades. For more information contact us or visit www.conformerinc.com.