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Christmas is comimg!

I’ve recently been working with a couple of smallish charities in different parts of the UK who are planning their first ever door drop activity.

We have provided the full range of profiling, targeting and planning services they both required, which included making recommendations on how best to complete the final mile delivery.

Royal Mail door to door featured prominently in both of our proposals, but when we researched postal sector availability for the Autumn weeks they required, existing competitive bookings partially blocked our requests, which now require both clients to re-think their timelines.

Neither could understand that “only” booking your door drop activity 10+ weeks in advance can sometimes lead to such issues, but its not really Royal Mail’s fault.

There will always be seasonal peaks for many business sectors and clients need to be aware of the need to book (with RM D2D) in advance and avoid disappointment.

If your promotional activity is strategic rather than tactical, which presumably implies long term thinking, why not book your media early and guarantee that the original strategy you have worked so hard to create can be accommodated by your chosen carrier/s rather than an alternative version?

And keep your competitors from booking the space!

The Autumn has historically been the door drop industry’s busiest “quarter”, with the lead up to Christmas commonly seeing the High Street come to life often with once a year users like jewellers, bookshops and specialist retailers/online shopping options coming to the fore, but its also a time of year when many charities are active.

October/November/December are likely to attract a flurry of retail spending on promoting Christmas food and drink products, as well as other Christmas orientated products or services.

January is a popular time for retail clients when “January sale” activity is a common theme, but its also a month when health/fitness clients encourage consumers to work off the excesses of the Festive Season.

Easter is the last weekend in March 2016, so late February/March will undoubtedly see garden centres "springing" into life, days out attractions like zoos and wildlife parks wooing visitors, as well charities making further appearances.

And so a door drop year continues.

Whenever your seasonal peaks are, they will surely be the same as your competitors, so don’t leave booking your door drop media until the last minute is the best advice I can give you.

There are of course alternative door drop options to RM D2D.

Solus distribution by definition should result in your distribution item being delivered on its own, but if you buy on price its more likely that your item will be dropped shared alongside others (which you might not even know about), so be careful who you buy from.

And you may well find your item distributed alongside a competitor, which can also be the case via free newspapers, though the latter can be avoided.

Neither service perhaps suffers from the access issues more commonly associated with Royal Mail, but equally neither service enjoys the same proportion of market share.

So always take professional advice (early) and act upon it – early!

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