SOURCE: Harte-Hanks Direct Marketing

Harte-Hanks Direct Marketing

November 14, 2011 08:00 ET

Harte-Hanks Direct Marketing Debuts New Software Tool for Tracking In-Home Delivery Through USPS: prEtrak

Webinar Slated Nov. 17; As USPS Consolidates Mail Infrastructure, Software to Track Mail Through Processing & Delivery Becomes Indispensible for Time-Critical Communications, Company Reports

BALTIMORE, MD--(Marketwire - Nov 14, 2011) - Harte-Hanks, Inc. (NYSE: HHS), a worldwide direct and targeted marketing company, announces the release of prEtrak™ (v 2.0), a newly-available software tool to help users of U.S. direct mail track their own communications from induction to the mail stream to in-home delivery through the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) Confirm Program. A Webinar regarding the need for mail tracking in today's postal environment, where prEtrak also will be introduced, is slated for Thursday, November 17, at 2 p.m. EST/11 a.m. PST. Registration is open at: www.harte-hanks.com/MailTracking.

The prEtrak software, first developed by Harte-Hanks in 2001 for its proprietary use on behalf of select clients, is now being made available for use by consumer and business marketers, mailers and mail service providers to keep track of their print communications as they move through the USPS's mailing infrastructure to final delivery destination, the company reports. By using the software, mailers and service providers can receive an hour-by-hour snapshot of the location of their automated mail, identifying potential problems before they happen to enable prompt intervention on a mailer's behalf.

"Using prEtrak has given Harte-Hanks 99.9% accuracy in its reporting, providing our clients and ourselves with accurate in-home delivery dates for time-sensitive mailings and expediting sales," said Tony Paul, group managing director, personalized and targeted mail services, Harte-Hanks. "No other tracking tool provides an opportunity for proactive, corrective action before a problem jeopardizes timely delivery."

"Harte-Hanks' prEtrak service has been instrumental in helping us manage our in-home dates with the USPS," said Luis Fernandez, vice president, customer insight, Neiman Marcus. "On top of being able to track what is actually happening to our mail as it is being processed, the knowledge that we have gained from using it has allowed us to tailor our mail plans to fit into our marketing needs."

"With the USPS Postmaster General announcing mail processing and delivery consolidations imminent in the months ahead, the timing is perfect for making prEtrak software commercially available," Paul said. "prEtrak monitors automated mail processing by checking USPS operational codes and the time stamps of those codes while mail is in the Postal Service's hands. Using this data, Harte-Hanks prEtrak applies a unique set of algorithms to determine predicted delivery of specific promotional materials and enables real-time tracking information on delivery of First-Class, Periodicals, and Standard Mail letters and automated flats."

Specifically, prEtrak includes several features, enabling several benefits to its users:

  • Hourly update reports - prEtrak is updated on an hourly basis. The system is also able to detect and effect change to early or late delivering material.
  • Secure Website - the prEtrak site can be accessed from any Web-enabled desktop with security access to each mailer's reporting structure. Reports can be viewed by a number of filters that include State, SCF (sectional center facility) and 5-digit ZIP Code down to an individual address level.
  • Mapping capabilities - prEtrak provides geographical representation of the U.S. for a top-level overview of delivery with drill-down capabilities into each state.
  • Detailed Delivery Reporting - reporting can be segmented by brick-and-mortar location, territory or market. Delivery information can be reported on various other criteria based on client specific need.
  • Seed reporting - Mailers have access to reporting on seeds from within each promotion or mailing.
  • Historical reporting - with the ability to identify trends from promotion to promotion, mailers can manage delivery patterns and maximize response rates.

"As communications become more multichannel, and timing of other media depends on knowledgeable in-home mail delivery, prEtrak offers that reliability in predicting delivery. This allows for other messaging triggers such as text and email to be delivered in a timely manner, as well as the ability to streamline call center staffing functionality. prEtrak provides visibility on your promotional materials and using this information we are able to ensure the proper corrective actions are put into place to drive continuous improvements, obtaining the highest degree of on time delivery possible," said Chris Armstrong, vice president, mail tracking services, Harte-Hanks Direct Marketing.

For more information on prEtrak contact Harte-Hanks at contactus@harte-hanks.com, call (800) 456-9748 or visit http://www.harte-hanks.com/MailTracking.

About Harte-Hanks®
Harte-Hanks, Inc. is a worldwide, direct and targeted marketing company that provides direct marketing services and shopper advertising opportunities to local, regional, national and international consumer and business-to-business marketers. Visit the Harte-Hanks Website at http://www.harte-hanks.com or call (800) 456-9748.

This document may contain trademarks that are owned or licensed by Harte-Hanks, Inc. and its subsidiaries, including, without limitation, Harte-Hanks® and other names and marks. All other brand names, product names, or trademarks belong to their respective holders.

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