LetterStream Learns – Internal Training Brand

LetterStream Learns BrandWe had a fun day today.  Well, we probably have fun most days, but today we launched our new internal training brand; LSLearns.  LetterStream always wants to develop, and cultivate an internal culture of learning to go along with our already “fast and perfect mail” mantra and our “mad customer love” vision for customer service.

It is our belief that as employees grow and learn they start to discover their unique talents that can unlock a tremendous amount of capability.  David, our President, is often heard saying that inside everyone is a hidden super power that can manifest itself in the workplace in amazing ways.  LSLearns is an attempt to formalize our belief that people, when awakened in the right way, can do amazing things.

Some skeptics may say, “Ah, this is just an attempt to squeeze more productivity out of people”.  We might respond; “Sure! Sort of.” After all, what’s wrong with more productivity? But “squeeze” probably doesn’t capture the essence of our training efforts, instead we might use the word “foster”. By creating training, learning and growing opportunities we allow our employees to decide how much effort to put into their own career development plan, and hopefully inspire them along the way to be excellent at whatever it is they are doing.

Leader of Leaders and Learner of Learners, Kay Coleman, helped us launch the day, and our new brand, by leading us through some activities to engage our minds in different ways.  Kay has been an active learner, teacher and facilitator for most of her life, was Program Director with iLeadAZ – a program developed to lead school principals to greater success, and now provides consulting services to companies (like ours!).  Thanks Kay, for coming along side us with our passion for learning!

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year!

Welcome 2014! Years seem to feel more like months these days. I’m not sure if that’s because we are having too much fun and making time fly, or if we are just distracted by the opportunities to assist our customers. Either way, a new year is upon us.

We want to say thank you to all our customers, vendors, employees, friends and families who all have been so supportive of the products and services that we offer. We are grateful… Thank You!

In response, and as our New Year’s resolution, we will continue to innovate in the mailing industry in order to deliver hi-tech mailing tools to assist you with your mailings. We will also continue to offer a degree of speed and precision that few in the mailing world can provide, and we will continue to offer stellar customer service, the kind that you can only find by turning back time.

Please continue to communicate with us and give us your feedback so that we can partner with you in helping you accomplish your goals this year as well.

Thank you! …and Happy New Year!

Towing Companies Send Certified Mail, Too

tow truckIf you’re not in the towing business, this post might not be for you… unless of course your vehicle has recently been impounded, in which case you might want to know a few things.

Many states require towing companies to notify owners, via USPS Certified Mail with Return Receipt, that their car has been towed within 3 days of towing. Failure to do so may result in the inability to charge the car’s owner for towing fees and/or storage. (Be sure to check your state laws to determine what is required.)

We’ve found that our online certified mail solutions are a tremendous benefit to those in the towing business for two reasons. First, LetterStream helps towing companies send their certified letters on time–each and every time–allowing all fees to be collected. Secondly, we maintain the mailing records online for easy access to comply with document retention rules.

Check out how we help towing companies comply with their specific state statutes:

Colorado

Public Tow Requirements:

“If the responsible law enforcement agency does not use an operator to store the motor vehicle, the responsible law enforcement agency must notify the owner(s) and lienholder(s) by certified mail, return receipt requested” and “Tow Operator- Notice to the owner(s) and lienholder(s) must be sent within 3 calendar days after the receipt of the completed record search from the Department. a) The tow operator shall retain proof of notification on file for 3 years. b) Notices sent by a tow operator must be sent by certified mail, return receipt requested.”

South Carolina

Guidelines for Businesses for Tow/Repair Vehicles Section 56-5-5620-5670:

Storage charges to begin on the first day if certified return receipt notices to the owners and lien holders are mailed within 5 days of determining their identities. Otherwise no storage charges accrue until the notices are mailed.”

Connecticut

State Law Title 14 Sec. 14-145:

“If vehicle is not claimed within 48 hours, the tower must complete the DMV form “Motor Vehicle Notice of Tow” (form H-114) and shall mail, by certified mail, copies of the completed form to the owner and to all lien holders of record.”

California

Section 14602.6 Vehicle Impoundment:

“The impounding agency, within two working days of impoundment, shall send a notice by certified mail, return receipt requested, to the legal owner of the vehicle, at the address obtained from the department, informing the owner that the vehicle as been impounded. Failure to notify the legal owner within two working days shall prohibit the impounding agency from charging for more than 15 days’ impoundment when the legal owner redeems the impounded vehicle.”

***

We haven’t looked at every state’s statutes on towing and impounding, but the above is the result of a quick google search.

If you want to speed up the time to get your certified mail sent, and want to learn how to keep great records of your mailings for years to come, contact us today.

Time Is Running Out To Give Stars And Get Starbucks!

starbucks card from letterstream

The Stars for Starbucks promotion is nearing its end, so if you haven’t taken a moment to give us 5-stars and a glowing review, now is the time!

We’ve enjoyed receiving and reading the positive feedback and encouraging comments. We’ve liked it so much, in fact, that we’ve upped our Starbucks gift card giveaway amount to $10!

Here’s what one customer, Andrew Flusche, had to say (keep his name handy if you get a traffic ticket in Virginia):

I use LetterStream to fulfill a variety of printing & mailing needs for my law firm. They do an excellent job from start to finish.

Here’s what really got me hooked on them: When I called with questions before I was even a client, they happily gave me some credits to play around with. I sent a test letter from their system, expecting to see it in the mail in a few days. I was amazed when they emailed me a picture of the letter before mailing it! Super cool way to WOW a new customer. 🙂

We’ll be anxiously awaiting YOUR positive feedback, and then promptly sending you your Starbucks gift card. It will arrive in a professional looking mailing that we’ve created, taking advantage of our own color specials for the month.

So in addition to getting coffee on us, you’ll also get to see how nice our Color Express Letter product looks when you see it in the mail. (**Oh, by the way, there are only 6 days remaining in our Color Specials as well**).

In case you want to create full-color letters like the one shown above, here’s how we did it… we simply loaded our logo into our Remembered Items (under My Account) to use as the return address on the #10 envelope. The letter was also saved as a color document in Remembered Items. Each time someone sends their positive review, we simply add their name and address to our private online address book, and in a couple of clicks the mailing is ready to go (except for the Starbucks gift card, which we lovingly attach by hand with those sticky things credit card companies use). Anyway, the process only takes a minute or two.

Keep those 5-star comments coming, and we’ll keep the Starbucks cards flying out the door!

Remember this is for current customers. We are looking for reviews based on your prior positive experiences.

Sending Notices to Local Residents via Certified Mail

USPS Certified MailWe are always fascinated to learn more about how our customers are using certified mail. Most of our large volume certified mail users are sending mail for legal reasons, but the spectrum of legal mailings is quite broad (lien letters, collection letters, class action lawsuits, medical device recalls, parking tickets, gym membership cancellations, etc.).

The other day we even created a certified letter mailing for a new bar in Chicago.

Did you know that (according to Chapter 4-60-130 of the Chicago Municipal Code): “If 50 or more legal voters reside within a distance of 500 feet from the licensed premises, the applicant is required to send written notice to all legal registered voters within 500 feet of the licensed premises. The applicant must send notices via certified mail with a return receipt requested.”

This is found in the Chicago Late Hour Liquor License Application Process.

So if by chance a similar city ordinance applies to you, keep LetterStream in mind. We mailed 100% of the letters the same day the bar owner gave us the go-ahead!

Give Stars – Get Starbucks

starbucks logoWhile we’d love to take you out for a cup of coffee and get some feedback on how we’re doing, we realize this might get a little impractical.

However, we have devised a way to buy you a cup of coffee for your feedback. It’s not quite the same as a sit down chat, but please know we will value it as much as a face-to-face meeting. Here’s how it works….

1. Go to your favorite business review site (Google+, Insider Pages, or another of your choice).

2. Give us a 5-star rating (if for whatever reason you can’t give us 5-stars, contact us immediately, and we’ll make it right).

3. Add some glowing comments.

4. Send us a message via our Contact page with a link to your review and your mailing address.

5. We will send you a thank you letter and a $5.00 Starbucks gift card*.

If you ever feel like you aren’t getting stellar service from LetterStream, simply call us and ask to talk to the President. He will always take the time to speak with you and work to improve our service.

*Limited to current customers only, one card per customer. Offer ends Sept. 30, 2013.

Going Out On A Limb

I Love LetterStream Ribbon

We decided to try a different kind of giveaway at our booth at the National CAI Trade Show this year, and to be honest, it could have backfired on us.

This year we took the risk of offering “I Love LetterStream” ribbons to our customers and API partners as they stopped by our booth. We were hoping that a few would attach the ribbon to their trade show attendee badge. But whatever happened, we knew it would be a learning experience.

You see, when you ask someone to wear a ribbon that says they love you, you open yourself up to a whole lot of scrutiny. Would our customers and partners love it or hate it?

We waited patiently as the Expo doors opened and attendees started filing into the aisles. Then the first visitors approached our booth, they looked up to survey our exhibit, they noticed the LetterStream banner, and then we heard these words… “LetterStream!!, We love LetterStream!!” We breathed a sigh of relief and passed out the “I Love LetterStream” ribbons, which were quickly applied to their trade show badges.

Indeed it was a risky move, and one that might have caused us to be accused of excessive boldness. But in the grand scheme of things, it certainly created an honest feedback mechanism. And we discovered what we hoped would be true; that our customers LOVE the LetterStream experience. We passed out slightly over 100 ribbons at the Community Association Institute (CAI) national trade show and the CAI Arizona show.

We work very hard to provide incredible speed, impeccable accuracy and crazy good service; and we are tickled to know that it is appreciated by our customers.

To our customers and API partners that were happy to wear our ribbons, we say “Thank You!”. Thank you for your feedback, your partnership and your appreciation.

For those who aren’t that familiar with LetterStream, check out some of the positive things our customers are saying about us on our testimonials page. And if you have something you want to add, please keep the comments coming!

World's Longest Receipt?

USPS post office receiptWhen we returned from the Post Office the other day, we thought we might have set the world record for the longest receipt. After all, the cash register receipt was 48 feet and 8 inches long! Turns out we were a little short. The longest receipt is well documented online at 57 feet and 6 inches.

Why did we have such a long receipt? Sometimes we print and mail rather unique jobs for our customers, and if that means generating a receipt at the local post office that’s nearly 50 feet long, so be it. In this case we were mailing certified mail flats that necessitated a trip to the post office due to something special we were doing for our client.

If you find yourself pondering how you are going to get your next certified mail project out the door, keep LetterStream in mind. We have a lot of fast, automated processes for mailing certified letters.

And if we don’t already have an automated solution for your complex mailing, you might just be the opportunity we need to get a real world record receipt!

Thanks to the team and our friends at the local post office for making the magic happen when complex mailings arise.

Certified Mail by the Thousands!

USPS Certified MailWe were contacted the other day to help one of our customers with a fairly large Certified Mail job.

It wasn’t our largest USPS Certified Mail project, but with more than 23,000 certified letters, it was still a lot of certified letters (see actual picture).

In addition to printing, folding and inserting the certified mail for our client, we also licensed a cobranded version of our website so their clients could log in and check the status and retrieve signatures of any piece of mail.

The job went out quickly and easily and provided everyone involved complete USPS tracking information as well as electronic signatures, matched with the mail piece.

Big or small, whether you’ve got a single certified letter or thousands, our automated processes will make it easy.