Trade group taps Golin to rekindle envelope usage

WASHINGTON: A group hoping to remind people of the benefits of using the US postal system has hired GolinHarris for a national assignment. Spending on the effort could reach $1 million over the next three years.

WASHINGTON: A group hoping to remind people of the benefits of using the US postal system has hired GolinHarris for a national assignment. Spending on the effort could reach $1 million over the next three years.

"It's time we start telling our side of the story," said John Parsio, chairman of the board at the Envelope Manufacturers Association's Foundation for Paper-Based Communications. "The fact is mail and envelopes feel good in our homes and they don't interrupt our dinner or our Sunday coffee."

The increasing use of e-mail, online bill payments, and other forms of electronic communication means the use of so-called "snail mail" - and envelopes by extension - has been pushed to the background. This situation stands to have an adverse effect on association members.

The foundation turned to Golin because it was pleased with the work the firm had done for it in 2002 after anthrax was detected in several letters and postal facilities in the DC area.

The agency plans to put five people on the account from its DC office and will use resources in New York and Chicago as needed, said Lane Bailey, MD of Golin's DC office.

"It's clearly a national campaign," Bailey said. "We hope to tie both the history and significance of envelopes to current debates about privacy and identity theft that are paramount in consumers' minds today."

The campaign will stress the security of using envelopes for bill paying and the dependability of mail arriving where it's supposed to go, he noted.

The effort will involve media relations and coalition building with other interested groups.

"We will work with the [association] to influence public opinion and bring creative, renewed attention to the use of envelopes and the envelope industry as a whole," Bailey added.

The foundation expects the campaign to proceed in three phases over the next three years.

The foundation was created six years ago as the association's educational arm, Parsio said.

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