Friday, October 21, 2011

Return To Sender (Why You Should Bother)

Will snail-mail ever become redundant?  I doubt it.

I’m the sort of person who takes the time to:

  • put a line through the address
  • writes “Return to sender - no longer at this address” on the front (sometimes with a big arrow pointing to the return address if it’s at the top of the envelope), and 
  • drops it back in the post when I get a chance.
Here’s a couple of reasons why I think this is a good practice:
  1. It’s doing someone a favour without you getting a reward. A practice of unselfish behaviour.
  2. If I was running a company, I would appreciate knowing that my client/consumer details needed updating.
  3. If I was the person, no longer living there, I would want the groups I interact with to know so that they could remind me to change my details next time I see them.
  4. If everyone did this, then companies would see the effectiveness (or ineffectiveness) of this means of communication for a certain profile of client/consumer.
  5. Your might save some trees if you maintain this practice over a life-time.

It’s interesting to note that you can perform a snail-mail “return to sender’ totally anonymously, but with incorrectly addressed/sent electronic-mail you always run the risk of spam hitting you back. Marking or deleting spam is today’s equivalent action and no feedback goes to the companies unless the spam becomes excessive or wide-spread.

Is there something lost in this new process?

Snail mail will be around for a while, so I wouldn’t panic just yet.

For those who like Elvis Presley: