Postal giant to fund new direct mail industry body

NEWS-1-royal_mailA new free-of-charge industry body focusing on direct mail will provide news, research and case studies for an audience consisting of the UK’s top 3,000 advertisers and 500 key agencies.

Royal Mail will fund the Mail Media Centre (MMC) on behalf of the entire mailing industry in a bid to offer better information, education and help to marketers when they are tasked with choosing their marketing mix.

Antony Miller, head of media development at Royal Mail, says the MMC will be direct mail’s answer to the Newspaper Marketing Agency, the Radio Advertising Bureau and television marketing body Thinkbox. The level of funding is “significant” according to Miller, who suggests it would be in line with the other industry marketing bodies.

Royal Mail says the new body reflects part of its overall strategy. Whereas other brands operating in the direct mail sector, such as TNT and OnePost, are concentrating on their own growth, Miller says that Royal Mail’s strategy is to help grow the entire market.

“The launch of the MMC is in the vein of BT’s Bob Hoskins ‘It’s Good To Talk’ ad all those years ago. It’s about taking the responsibility for market growth,” he adds.

Miller was careful, however, not to mislead expectations on the new body, which launches with a website on March 9.

“This is not an attempt to convince anyone that our medium is the answer to everything. Instead, it answers the question of why you need mail in the mix, why you should consider it every time and how it can boost results.”

Among other things, the website, which can be found at mmc.co.uk, will feature case studies from a range of global clients with data on how consumers have reacted to their campaigns.

Royal Mail is currently at the centre of a row which has split the Parliamentary Labour Party. Lord Mandelson, supported by the Royal Mail’s pension trustees, faces a showdown with Labour MPs over a plan to part-privatise the company.

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