Eliminating Junk Mail

Junk mail is a modern-day plague — no vaccine will protect you from it. But there are steps you can take to cut down on the amount of unsolicited mail you receive — if not entirely eliminate it. It does take a bit of patience and perseverance — but it’s well worth the effort.

A Look At How Junk Mail Gets Started

Checkmark-Iconyou make a purchase or register with a company for a service

Xmark-Iconyour name is added to that company’s customer list

Checkmark-Iconyour contact information is sold or rented to a list broker

Xmark-Iconname can then be sold to literally hundreds of organizations

Checkmark-Iconeach organization may send you unwanted mail and add you to another list

Credit Reporting Agencies

Xmark-Icongather information that lenders use to decide your credit-worthiness

Checkmark-Iconsell your name to banks and credit card companies for “pre-approved” offers

Xmark-Iconcontact each credit bureau directly asking to “opt out” of this practice

Checkmark-IconExperian — 800-353-0809

Xmark-IconEquifax — 800-755-3502

Checkmark-IconTransUnion — 800-345-2349

Xmark-Iconyou can get off lists for “Val Pak” coupons and other impersonal junk mail

Checkmark-IconADVO Inc. List Service — 239 W. Service Road, Hartford, CT 06120

Xmark-IconCox Direct Operations — 6030 N. US 301, Elm City, NC 27822

Checkmark-IconCarol Wright Gifts — 340 Applecreek Road, Lincoln, NE 68528-1501

Xmark-IconHarte Hanks Direct Marketing — 100 Alco Place, Baltimore, MD 21227-2090

Checkmark-IconMoney Mailer — 14271 Corporate Drive, Garden Grove, CA 92843

Xmark-IconVal-Pak Coupons Address Info. — 8575 Largo Lakes Drive, Largo, FL 33773

Direct Marketing Association

Checkmark-Iconsponsor’s the “Mail Preference Service”

Xmark-Iconask to have your name removed from their marketing lists

Checkmark-Iconinclude all permutations and misspellings of your name and address

Xmark-Iconthis “delete” list is distributed to major direct marketers 4 times a year

Checkmark-Iconsend a postcard to DMA — PO Box 9008, Farmingdale, NY 11735-9008

Xmark-Iconor visit www.dmaconsumers.org

Junk Mail From Unexpected Places

Checkmark-Iconwarranty cards often go to list brokers rather than the manufacturer

Xmark-Icondon’t return warranty cards — your warranty is good without them

Checkmark-Iconcredit cards let other companies send promotions to their card holders

Xmark-Iconask to opt out of these and even in-house mailing besides your bill

Checkmark-Iconsigning up for store scanner “discount cards” adds you to more mailing lists

Xmark-Iconcontact current magazine subscription and ask to “opt out” from their lists

Checkmark-Iconcompanies who sell and rent lists of potential consumers

Xmark-Iconcontact them and ask to deleted from their mail and telemarketing lists

Checkmark-IconPolk List Order Services Opt Out — 1621-18th Street, Denver, CO 80202

Xmark-IconDonnelly Marketing Name Supression Service — P.O. Box 3502, Ames, IA 50010-3502

Checkmark-IconList Services Corp. — 6 Trowbridge Drive Box 516, Bethel, CT 06801

Xmark-IconMetromail Corp. Consumer Services — 901 W. Bond, Lincoln, NE 68521

Checkmark-IconDatabase America Compilation — 100 Paragon Drive, Montvale, NJ 07645

Xmark-IconWalter Karl Consumer List Mgmt. — 1 American Lane, Greenwich, CT 06831

Checkmark-IconDun & Bradstreet — 899 Eaton Avenue, Bethlehem, PA 18025-9922

Xmark-IconUS postal service sells change of address lists to marketers

Checkmark-Iconincludes a list of “licensed parties” — all sales and marketing depts.

Xmark-Iconcan ask to have your name removed from the NCOA database

Checkmark-Iconinclude your name, old address, and new address in your request

Xmark-IconNCOA Customer Support — 6060 Primacy Pkwy. #101, Memphis, TN 38188

Checkmark-Iconcheck the box for “temporary move” and set time frame for 364 days

Xmark-Icononly permanent address changes go in database

Some Unorthodox Approaches

Checkmark-Iconwrite “return to sender” on first class junk mail and put back in box

Xmark-Iconsimply refuse any piece of junk mail and the post office must deal with it

Checkmark-Iconput the junk mail in the company’s postage-paid return envelope

Xmark-Iconinclude a note saying “stop sending me your junk”

Checkmark-Iconmail it back to them at their expense

Xmark-Iconask to “opt out” anytime you give someone your contact information

Checkmark-Iconuse the words “please do not rent, sell, share, or trade my name”

Xmark-Iconask that your name be put on an “in-house” list only

Checkmark-Icondon’t give out your contact information unless it is absolutely necessary

Xmark-Iconthat means stop signing up for contests, giveaways, “send me more info”, and samples

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Copyright 2009 RamonaCreel.com

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Ramona Creel is an award-winning 15-year veteran organizer and member of the National Association Of Professional Organizers. As well as having birthed “The A-To-Z Of Getting Organized,” Ramona is also the author of “The Professional Organizer’s Bible: A Slightly Irreverent And Completely Unorthodox Guide For Turning Clutter Into A Career”—and the creator of more than 200 “quick-start” business tools and templates for use by productivity professionals. She writes seven different blogs, has worked with hundreds of clients, and has delivered scores of presentations on getting organized. Ramona resides on the roads of America as a full-time RVer—living and working in a 29-foot Airstream. Learn more at and RamonaCreel.com.

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