USPS Marketing Mail (What Is It, Cost, How Long, Differences + More)

There are many different types of mail that end up in your mailbox on a regular basis- letters from loved ones, bills, eCommerce packages, etc.

But what about all of the Marketing Mail USPS sends- what actually is it, and how do you use it for your business or personal use?

USPS Marketing Mail In 2022

USPS Marketing Mail, also known as Standard Mail or Direct Mail, is a type of service USPS offers for businesses and individuals to send out flyers, advertisements, newsletters, and more to those in a specific area. There are certain qualifications that must be met in order for mail to be considered Marketing Mail, such as weight restrictions and the presence of a Business Mail Permit.

There’s so much more that goes into how Marketing Mail works and how you can use it to help out your business or neighborhood, so be sure to keep reading to learn more!

What Is USPS Marketing Mail?

Generally speaking, USPS Marketing Mail is mail that is not required to be mailed as First Class Mail or Periodicals.

USPS Marketing Mail was formerly called Standard Mail and is sometimes called Direct Mail.

Marketing Mail includes printed matter, flyers, circulars, advertisements, newsletters, bulletins, and catalogs.

Essentially, most of the business advertisements and random catalogs that show up in your mailbox, as well as any neighborhood magazines or notifications, are all due to the USPS Marketing Mail system.

How Much Does USPS Charge For Marketing Mail?

Because Marketing Mail is intended for use by businesses or neighborhoods looking to reach a large amount of people, USPS charges a small amount per piece of Marketing Mail but does require a minimum amount of mail to be purchased.

The prices for Marketing Mail start at around 20 cents per piece of mail being sent, with the price increasing as the weight of each mailpiece increases.

The minimum quantity that must be purchased for Marketing Mail is 200 pieces or 50 lbs of mail.

This means that you’ll be paying, at minimum, $40 for 200 pieces of mail to be sent out to people in your area.

The price of USPS Marketing Mail also varies based on the type of mail you’re trying to send out- there’s a really great chart on USPS’ website that offers a side-by-side comparison here.

There are prices for postcards, letters, flats, and lightweight Marketing parcels, all of which come at a different starting cost and whose price can change depending on the dimensions and weight of any given piece of Marketing Mail.

If you’re looking for a more accurate, tailored estimate of how much it’ll cost for you to use Marketing Mail for your next advertisement or newsletter, you can use USPS’ Business Postage Price Calculator here to calculate an estimate just for you.

Be sure when using this calculator that you know exactly how much an individual piece of the mail you’d like to send weighs, as well as the dimensions of each piece of mail as this affects the price per mail you’ll be charged.

How Long Does USPS Marketing Mail Take To Deliver?

How Long Does USPS Marketing Mail Take To Deliver?

Marketing Mail, just like any other type of mail shipped by USPS, has delivery times that vary depending on the distance a piece of mail is traveling.

Marketing Mail by definition is a non-priority category of mail that comes with no delivery window guarantees, although it typically delivers to local areas within 3 to 6 business days and delivers nationwide within 3 to 14 business days.

In short, if you were to use Marketing Mail to send a neighborhood newsletter out in your neighborhood, you can expect it to deliver typically within a week.

If you were to try and send a business advertisement using Marketing Mail in a different state, however, you can expect your mail to take up to three weeks to deliver.

What Is The Difference Between USPS First Class Mail And Marketing Mail?

The main differences between USPS First Class Mail and Marketing Mail are qualifications, price, delivery windows, and options regarding mail forwarding and returns.

Pre-Sorted First Class Mail is an option that’s comparable to Marketing Mail as it provides discounts for mail sent in bulk and is typically used by businesses or those looking to reach a large number of people.

Just like Marketing Mail, there is no single piece Pre-Sorted First Class Mail rate- the service was created to help get out mass mail such as advertisements, fliers, newsletters, etc.

Pre-Sorted First Class Mail is more expensive than Marketing Mail, with prices starting at about 42 cents per piece, over double the price per piece of Marketing Mail.

That being said, the extra cost isn’t wasted: delivery times for Pre-Sorted First Class Mail is less than half that of Marketing Mail, with local deliveries typically taking 2 business days and national deliveries taking 4 business days.

The qualifications for Pre-Sorted First Class Mail are another feature that differentiates it from Marketing Mail.

To qualify for Pre-Sorted First Class Mail, the mail must:

  • Have a maximum weight of 13 ounces for flats
  • For any mail that is heavier than 13 ounces, it will be sent as Priority mail, which includes a price increase
  • Have a maximum weight of 4 ounces for letters
  • Be ordered in quantities of 500 or more at a time

Pre-Sorted First Class Mail also comes with several features Marketing Mail doesn’t surrounding mail forwarding and returned mail with outdated addresses.

If a Pre-Sorted First Class Mail letter or mailpiece is considered undeliverable, then USPS will either forward the mail to the correct forwarding address or return the mail to sender at no extra cost.

This is not the case with Marketing Mail, however- if Marketing Mail is undeliverable, it usually just gets thrown away rather than put back through the process of forwarding or resending.

What Are The Requirements For USPS Marketing Mail?

There are several requirements a piece, or set, of mail must meet in order to be eligible for Marketing Mail.

The main requirements of a Marketing Mail mailpiece are that the mail must:

  • Not exceed 3.5 ounces in weight if categorized as a letter
  • Not exceed 16 ounces in weight if categorized as a flat
  • Be ordered in groups of 200 pieces of mail minimum
  • Be grouped by zipcode to qualify for presort savings

It’s important to remember that Marketing Mail rates are only available when mail is purchased in bulk- there’s no such thing as a single piece Marketing Mail rate.

If you want to know more, you can also see our posts on how fast is USPS first class, what is proof of delivery in USPS, and if USPS packages are insured.

Conclusion

The USPS service Marketing Mail is a bulk-mailing service that is typically used to mail printed matter, flyers, circulars, advertisements, newsletters, bulletins, and catalogs.

Marketing Mail is usually used by businesses, political groups, neighborhoods, or really anyone who wants to reach a large group of people in a concentrated geographic area.

Marketing Mail is pretty cheap, with prices starting at around 20 cents per mail piece, however, it does take up to three weeks to actually deliver for places that aren’t local.

Another service that’s comparable to Marketing Mail is Pre-Sorted First Class Mail, which is nearly double the price but a much faster option for more time-sensitive adverts.

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Marques Thomas

Marques Thomas graduated with a MBA in 2011. Since then, Marques has worked in the retail and consumer service industry as a manager, advisor, and marketer. Marques is also the head writer and founder of QuerySprout.com.

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