Strategies for Saving Money on Credit Union Notices

Jul 17, 2019


It’s the year 2019, and as much as I’d like to think we’ve ushered in a technological utopia—one in which people make good, informed, logical choices—we have a long way to go.

I’ve driven around with my tank on empty looking for the best price on gas in a new town. If I think I can fill ‘er up for two cents less per gallon down the street, then I’m going there. I’ve also spent hours comparison shopping on the internet to save a buck-fifty on a USB drive.

Was It Worth It?

I realize that I’m wasting time and money hunting down these small savings. In fact, in the end, that kind of incremental savings has no effect on me. I would have been better off paying the higher price for these small purchases, because a little savings here and there isn’t worth my time and my pocketbook can handle the higher price tags for some things.

But here’s the thing: most incremental savings advantages are one-off purchases. If they’re recurring purchases—or if they’re done in bulk—then those savings start to add up. Fast.

So… Credit Union Notices, Then?

Credit union notices are one of those things where incremental savings has an actual impact. After you add up all the little bits that go into creating a visually-appealing, engaging, and effective notice, you’re gonna be out a pretty penny.

Without getting into the exact numbers—numbers vary from credit union to credit union and from vendor to vendor—the consensus is that third-party notice vendors save money overall. Here’s why the things cost so much:

1. Envelopes

You have to put your notices in something before you mail them. Might as well use envelopes, which have a pretty good track record so far. Plus, the post office encourages them.

Oh yeah, and they protect your members’ privacy. That’s a big deal, too. They do cost money, though.

Saving Money on Envelopes:

The best way to save money on envelopes is to not use them at all. Encourage adoption of eNotices among your members.

Another tactic is to combine mailed materials to reduce the number of envelopes needed. Combining documents or document types can save on envelopes.

2. Postage

This is a major consideration in the whole equation. Credit union notices sent through the mail require postage. Last we checked, postage still costs money, and lots of it: recently, the USPS increased postage rates.

One thing to be careful about is package weights. Heavier envelopes cost more to ship and can quickly double the cost to mail printed materials.

Saving Money on Postage:

You can save money on postage by—again—moving as many members as possible over to eNotices. And as long as we’re repeating ourselves: combining documents will help with postage.

However, there are other ways to save on postage as well. For example, the USPS has bulk purchase options. Some credit unions may qualify for bulk postage. Others would actually see a postage cost reduction by outsourcing to a third-party notice vendor—all vendors qualify for bulk postage, and they’re usually happy to pass those savings onto the credit unions they serve.

3. Staffing and Equipment

We’re thankful for laws that require employers to pay their employees—it’s part of what makes our country great. We also recognize that it contributes to business overhead. Unfortunately, paying internal credit union employees to design, format, and stuff notices isn’t always the best use of resources.

Also, many credit unions don’t have the kind of production capabilities that mass mailings require. Investing in that equipment—or relying on local printers—represents a massive, avoidable expenditure.

Saving Money on Staffing and Equipment

Why pay your employees to focus on something that, in all probability, lies outside their wheelhouse? It’s generally far more efficient and cost-effective to outsource the creation and mailing of notices.

As an added bonus, most third-party vendors are happy to help credit unions convert their members to eNotices.

Additional Resources for Credit Unions

Most people aren’t particularly passionate about creating and mailing notices. That’s okay. But I know everyone loves a good deal.

These cost-saving strategies for credit union notices are easy to act on. They also represent perpetual savings instead of just one-time savings. That sort of thing adds up. Fast.

Follow the links below to see more cost- and convenience-related solutions for your credit union’s mailing needs!

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