Australia Post agrees to print post relief measures for publishers during COVID-19

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The Real Media Collective has negotiated with Australia Post to provide temporary relief for print post products during the COVID-19 pandemic.

During the coronavirus outbreak, Australia Post will provide leniency credit around the 500 g weight limit, allow multiple title lodgements, and relax the frequency requirements for print post so that one-off publications qualify. 

The Real Media Collective has drafted a document suggesting how producers of print post might take advantage of the temporary changes, for example: 

  • Upsell an additional title to existing subscribers by using the multiple title lodgement
  • Trial new titles with a one-off edition 
  • Post counter-only annual publications. 

The Real Media Collective is an association representing the producers and distributors of catalogues, direct mail and print products across the entire marketing channel. 

“We have been in negotiations with Australia Post to provide some temporary relief for our members and broader industry across Print Post products,” said CEO Kellie Northwood. 

“Print Post is primarily used for magazines, periodicals and mail-order catalogues which our print and mail-house partners process and lodge daily. 

“The current regulations include minimum volumes restrictions, however we approached Australia Post to reduce these volume restrictions for the wider industry to benefit. 

“The solutions we worked through with Australia Post allow companies to shift into quick onboarding of new subscribers, conversion of office subscribers to in-home subscriptions and more to maintain volumes and to start new one-off pieces with smaller lodgement entry units,” said Northwood.

The temporary shifts across Print Post are a relaxation on the minimum quantities, frequency of titles to allow for one-off print runs of publication specials and weight leniency credits.

Additional solutions have been tabled by the Collective across Promo Post and Sample Post with possible expanded discussions into Charity Mail. These remain under review.

“When we moved into the COVID-19 pandemic, we immediately reached out to Australia Post with relief solutions that would encourage print volume stability, get content into homes to assist with Australians struggling with social connectivity whilst in isolation, and incentivise advertisers to see the power of print as a highly effective in-home media channel,” commented Northwood.

“From day one, Australia Post were positive and consultative, looking at all options to support the mail channel, and indirectly the industry, across this initiative. We thank the Australia Post team for pushing this through as quickly as they have, these product changes are often months in the making, however they have moved these discussions and execution in days,” said Northwood.

“There are a lot of complexities when you consider the size of Australia Post’s network so we will need to take it step by step,” concluded Northwood.

Australia Post has said that it will operate as usual during government restrictions on non-essential activity to reduce the impact of COVID-19.

The Real Media Collective has a range of COVID-19 information and resources available on its website. 

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