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Going postal: Charlotte businesses lament proposed Postal Service rate hike (access required)

By Caitlin Coakley A proposed rate hike submitted July 6 from the U.S. Postal Service to the Postal Regulatory Commission has drawn backlash from businesses, including those in Charlotte, who argue that the increased cost would be an added financial burden during a difficult financial time. The hit may be hardest to advertising companies that offer direct-mail services, such as Creative Marketing Solutions in Charlotte. Of everything that goes into direct-mail marketing — including printing and designing — the most expensive part is already the postage. “Per piece, the increase may seem small — only a few cents,” said Ed Warren, vice president of sales. “But you take that and multiply it by 100,000 pieces, and it becomes a huge expense.” Since most direct-mail services have their clients pay for the postage, the financial burden wouldn’t fall on them, Warren said. But it might cost them some customers. “It might push those companies who are borderline between direct mail and e-mail,” Warren said, “and push them to those other forms of marketing because they’re cheaper.”

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