Paper-based communication

Promoting paper and mail

FEPE is particularly active in promoting the continued, appropriate use of paper and mail. While most people are aware of the many benefits of digitalisation for all of us, there are still many people that rely on paper communication, such as those in rural locations without access to [fast] internet or those without digital skills.

See also: Legislation and Market trends

Issues

Digitalisation

The European Union is promoting the digital economy for economic modernisation and for generating sustainable growth and jobs.  Digital communication offers clear advantages in terms of speed, cost, and flexibility. Member companies of the paper value chain fully adopt and benefit from digital technologies.

However, there is legitimate concern that the freedom of senders and recipients of paper-based communication is being affected by policies that try to push digital communication (e.g. e-invoicing and e-procurement) not only on its own merits, but by actively suppressing paper communication.

Right to choose

FEPE was one of the founders of Keep Me Posted EU. This campaign promotes the citizen’s right to choose how they receive important information such as tax forms, election documents and bills and statements from service providers, without disadvantage compared to people who receive information digitally. The campaign is inspired by the UK campaign, Keep Me Posted UK and is directed towards the European Institutions. It gathers the support of consumer groups and charities which represent citizens who may be disadvantaged by a lack of choice or simply do not agree with it.

See: keepmepostedeu.org

Activities

FEPE is active in efforts to achieve balance and to protect the rights of consumers to get information delivered by mail/in print if they want it.

Activities in this area include:

    • FEPE ensures that its members have a voice in EU policymaking. Our main initiative in this area is the Keep Me Posted campaign (See: keepmeposteeu.org ).
    • FEPE is an active member of the Two Sides campaign. Its aim is to promote the responsible production and use of print and paper and to dispel common environmental misconceptions by providing users with verifiable information on why print media is an attractive, practical and sustainable method of communication.
    • In May 2019 we took part in the Print and Digital Convention at Messe Düsseldorf. Together with the International Post Corporation and the German envelope manufacturers federation we organised a two-day workshop and direct mail exhibition. The congress and exhibition were attended by 1,300 visitors and 94 exhibitors, a significant increase on 2018. 11 speakers highlighted the value of printed direct mail in the marketing mix. 50 different mail pieces were exhibited demonstrating the variety and creative possibilities of printed and shaped envelopes.

FEPE is an active member of the Print Media Group (PMG). It comprises a cluster of industries forming the print media value chain – papermaking, paper converting, printing, publishing and marketing. It is a platform for print value chain members to meet and discuss relevant issues and agree common communications activities.

Resources

Advantages of printed mail advertising, used in synergy with digital communication.

Excerpt from FEPE Quarterly 1, Spring 2021

Booklet by FEPE and TwoSides challenging myths about print and paper.

English version

Dutch version

French version

German version

Slovenian version

Spanish version

Short video produced by FEPE and KeepMePosted highlighting how postal mail is personal, safe and impactful.