Mailing Council - March 16 news | DMA

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Mailing Council - March 16 news

Council Rebrand
Further to our last update in December 15, we have finally agreed on a new band name - how exciting! We have now changed the council name to the Mailing Council. This has quite literally taken years – I remember my first ever meeting as council member, and it was being touted around back then. So after 4 years we unanimously decided to drop the word ‘House’ from the council name. I know what you’re thinking: such presence of mind to come up with this most masterful of moves. The more astute amongst you will now see that we can no longer be polarised to the category of ‘Mailing Houses’. Indeed, we now represent key elements of the mail supply chain.

Onwards and upwards!

In December, Ofcom published its latest monitoring report on the UK market, stating that Royal Mail was now making a ‘commercial return’ within the target range for a sustainable USO (Universal Service Offering).

The report also has a couple of interesting graphs, one showing letter prices and the other, the price of parcels. While the letter prices show a continual price increase, parcels show price decreases over the last couple of years due to the pressures of a highly competitive market! The more cynical amongst you might think that perhaps, as Royal Mail continues to hold the monopoly on the letters market, there is a direct correlation between increasing prices and a lack of competition. You can see the full report HERE, but I should draw your attention to pages 12-14.

Royal Mail’s quarterly report in January confirms this as mail volumes decreased year on year by 3% but revenue only fell by 2%. Parcels volumes were up 4% but revenue only increased by 1%.

Tariff change
Royal Mail has confirmed a further price rise for CBC (Customer Barcode) on the 4th July 2016. This will bring the differential between CBC and Mailmark to 4%. The price of OCR remains unchanged.

Royal Mail Wholesale is asking for all users of its incentives – currently the catalogue and digital stamp schemes – to feedback results. Unless Royal Mail has evidence that these incentives have made a difference, then it will find it difficult to justify further schemes in future. If your business has partaken in any of these incentives, and you have any feedback, then we’d love to hear from you (!

Advertising Mail
Royal Mail is reviewing how to simplify the Advertising Mail process, especially the need to send in physical seeds, which is costly and time consuming to check. Royal Mail are asking for suggestions as to how the process can be simplified, e.g. uploading documentation online, but still retain a reasonable degree of reassurance that it is being used correctly. If you use Advertising Mail and have any suggestions, we’d love to hear from you (

Data Protection
The hot topic across the direct marketing industry!

A final text of the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) was agreed in December and now needs approval by both the European Parliament and the relevant Ministers of all the member states. This is expected to be a formality and to be completed by April 2016 with the Regulation coming into effect by April 2018.

The DMA is heading the negotiations with the Information Commissioner (who was previously head of the ASA, so is “advertising friendly”) on behalf of the UK advertising industry to get some of the ambiguous areas clarified.

We’re not going to provide any great detail in these bulletins, rather, draw your attention to the DMAs own communications.

On a final note, the Mailing Council would like to openly challenge any other council, or DMA members to a round of golf. The ‘Dream Team’ awaits your challenge!

Until next time!

Kerry Holden
Chair, Mailing Council

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