Calling Any Ideas for a Postal Service Future!

I read a review of a recently published biography of President Calvin Coolidge by Amity Schlaes, and it was the first reference I have found to a President who objected to public ownership of the Postal Service. That was nine decades ago! Nothing so earth-shattering is in the works these days, but the Postal Service itself is very much trying to tune up for a future look

Looking for ideas about the Postal Service’s future is very much in vogue these days. I thought I’d curate a few recent media discussions.

I read a review of a recently published biography of President Calvin Coolidge by Amity Schlaes, and it was the first reference I have found to a President who objected to public ownership of the Postal Service. That was nine decades ago!

Nothing so earth-shattering is in the works these days, but the Postal Service itself is very much trying to tune up for a future look. It recently held its third take on PostalVision 2020, and I was enjoying a read by Harte-Hanks resident Postologist Charley Howard on the conference and its idea generation about future revenue streams for the Postal Service, much of the pdf focuses on the digital platform and secure message delivery: http://www.harte-hanks.com/postology/Harte-Hanks_PostologyReport_2013_May.pdf.

Picking up on one of Charley’s questions: Do people in their 20s give the Postal Service a second thought? I was frozen a minute by this recent ReadWrite post: “My Teenage Son Does Not Know How to Mail a Letter, and I Blame Technology.” This is fascinating to a 50-something!

Recently, USPS Office of the Inspector General’s David C. Williams, who participated in PostalVision 2020, issued a public call for proposals—so to speak—on what Americans might expect from the Postal Service going forward. He thoughtfully cataloged some ideas on the office’s blog, citing white papers undertaken by the office: “Giving America a Voice: Digital Services,” “Giving America a Voice: Revenue Generation Opportunities,” “Giving America a Voice: How Best to Cut Costs?” and its initial “Giving America a Voice” post.

Clearly, America has invested in its Postal Service—and continues to do so—so why not build a bridge to a secure national digital delivery platform? To access and procure e-government services? Or the bevy of other ideas brought on the presence of this network, assuming efficiency in execution. When you have a single service that enters every delivery address in the nation almost every day, it’s certainly not a system we should be walking away from.

Author: Chet Dalzell

Marketing Sustainably: A blog posting questions, opportunities, concerns and observations on sustainability in marketing. Chet Dalzell has 25 years of public relations management and expertise in service to leading brands in consumer, donor, patient and business-to-business markets, and in the field of integrated marketing. He serves on the ANA International ECHO Awards Board of Governors, as an adviser to the Direct Marketing Club of New York, and is senior director, communications and industry relations, with the Digital Advertising Alliance. Chet loves UConn Basketball (men's and women's) and Nebraska Football (that's just men, at this point), too! 

3 thoughts on “Calling Any Ideas for a Postal Service Future!”

  1. Based on the problems with electronic exchange (Snowden & Manning, currently) and the hemorrhaging of revenues at the USPS, I would suggest something from which marketing firms will cringe: raise the rates on "junk mail." One of the nice things about postal mail is its privacy — federal punishment is draconian for those snooping into stamped mail.

    As with most, I use email because it is fast and inexpensive (free). Making even the rates for mail would allow two things: raise the revenue of the USPS, and require thought before sending mail.

    I doubt this will ever happen, however.

  2. I’m a little confused by your article, other than a call for ideas. What is your point that you are trying to make or suggest here? Is it that the World Wide Web should be governed and controlled by the government, i.e. the postal service, so that they can once again control the delivery of correspondences for monetary gain or are you suggesting that they create their own correspondence delivery system in which nobody will buy into because of the World Wide Web?

    If you’re suggesting the first one, this would be no different than the issue of forced health care insurance upon everyone. It also suggests that all communications would be under government control and every message would go through and be scrutinized by other government controlled agencies.

    This radical idea is not that far fetched and you can bet that the idea has been brought up numerous times and has even been considered.

  3. The USPS situation has been a "tragic business" for 20 years.or more and although the USPS leadership KNOWS what is the BEST they can do…. the Congress and PRC has held up all ideas and plans for the same eternity. Your suggestion that people should send in ideas is ridiculous and proves you don’t know crap.

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