JICMAIL announces a new levy for 2021, opening-up data access across the industry

Mark Cross
Engagement Director of JICMAIL

The seismic shock of this year’s pandemic has given us all much food for thought across almost every aspect of our lives. For our part, the JICMAIL Board reflected across the summer how best JICMAIL should respond to this changed world for the benefit of all. It is worth remembering that JICMAIL (The Joint Industry Currency for Mail) is not for profit, we are owned by the industry for the industry to provide gold standard data and insight that helps users improve the planning, implementation, and evaluation of mail campaigns. Our Board represents all the interests across the buy and sell sides, including advertising industry bodies such as DMA, IPA and ISBA. Our challenge was how we might best accelerate the impact of this growing industry gold standard data for the widest benefit and at a time most needed.

As a result, we are implementing a new industry-wide, voluntary levy applied to the postage expenditure for Royal Mail (for Advertising Mail and Door to Door) products. The levy will apply from the end of March for Royal Mail Door to Door customers and from April to Retail and Wholesale Royal Mail customers. With the voluntary levy in place, the data access will be free to use for all companies in the UK. This will democratise the availability of our data benefiting every user of advertising mail in the country, giving them access to the core industry data and insight for better business decisions and ultimately, improved return on investment. SMEs will particularly benefit, supporting their growth and recovery through more effective campaign planning.

The levy is set at 0.3% (equating to a fractional per item charge of £3 per £1000 of advertising mail postage expenditure).  For 2021, the Levy is capped at £5,000 per year for any levy payer but for the typical advertiser spending c£50,000 on advertising mail, the levy will amount to a contribution of just £150. More details on the levy can be found here.

All advertisers will be able to access the data directly or through their agencies. All agencies and intermediaries wanting access, will need to be accredited by JICMAIL and all existing subscribers have been notified of the changes to their existing arrangements. Everyone is encouraged to register at JICMAIL by 31st March and become accredited for 2021.

This represents a new, equitable and transparent funding model that is designed to support the marketing efforts of everyone with a stake in the value delivery of the mail channel. We look forward to helping all ISBA members fully exploit the opportunities provided by this new approach. Best wishes of the season and for a better 2021 from the team at JICMAIL.

“ISBA are fully behind this funding transformation for JICMAIL at this crucial time in our economy. Improving data standards on a cross industry basis with transparency on costs through the supply chain are key priorities for our members. Innovation in funding approaches for core industry data such as with the JICMAIL Levy, which will dramatically expand gold standard data across the industry, is welcomed. We look forward to the growing impact this will have on the value of advertisers investment in the mail channel.”

Phil Smith - ISBA Director General