It's official! We have changed our brand name from United Printing and Mailing to mailing.com.
The decision to sunset the United name took much thought and often lively discussion. But it feels right because we know it's time to embrace change and make a new mark in the direct mail industry.
Once we committed to the name change, we felt like kids in a candy store. You know how it is – the excitement, the prospect of endless possibilities and a rush of invincibility. We are so excited to chart this new journey into the digital age and to invite you to join us.
New name, same values and dedication
The name is new, but one thing has not changed – our continued responsibility to build our family's legacy and to open doors to undreamed opportunities.
As we enter this new era in our company's history, it's only natural to look back at how far we've come as well as to speculate about our future. Certainly, the people best qualified to offer these dual perspectives are the two men who have charted the company's course over the last decades: Joe Hauer, who founded the company in 1965, and Craig Hauer, our current CEO.
Both men have led the company through major growth but each took a different path. I sat down with each one to learn more about their history with the company and their visions for its future.
Joe Hauer: Hard work, many hours and helping customers succeed brought us here
Ashley Jorgensen: Why did you start this company?
Joe Hauer: I knew early in life that I had a healthy appetite for work. I wanted to own the business so that I could enjoy working many hours as was needed.
A 60-hour-plus week was normal, and, most of the time, exciting. I lived by the circle of life, which is 8 hours for sleep, 8 hours for work to sustain life, and the remaining 8 hours would be used to provide for the success that I wanted.
AJ: When you launched the company 50 years ago, where did you think it would take you?
JH: In the beginning, it was difficult to know where life was leading. There seemed to be many dead ends. If you made a mistake, you often could not identify it, so you worked through it.
Hard and consistent efforts most often pay off. We all know the 10,000-hour rule of effort to achieve your goals. It often takes many times that much effort to accomplish what we want. Because most of don’t have a road map showing us how to get to our goal, many hours and hard work usually get us there.
AJ: What was the most difficult aspect of building the company?
JH: The market changes. So, to stay up with the market, so must we change. Our wants and needs must be measured very carefully. The company does not have a heart or brain, so we must provide that and allow the business to provide the services that our customers want and need.
Often times people quit just a bit short of success. Our customers and friends want to enjoy the print world with us, without hassle or stress.
AJ: Did you ever imagine we’d be where we are today?
JH: No. We were so busy with our customers enjoying the process that growth just followed. We had no plan to be a certain size or offer certain types of products. We were always sensitive to the needs of our customers, and they, in turn, enjoyed efforts that it took from both of us to get the job done.
Craig Hauer: Our name change sums up who we are and what we do and sets the stage for a third generation to succeed
Ashley Jorgensen: Why did you decide to join this company 25 years ago?
Craig Hauer: Growing up, I watched as my father worked at this business, from the first day he opened it, to hiring his first employees and buying equipment and obtaining his first clients.
I saw the energy brought not just to the company but also to our clients, and I always wanted to be part of that. So, when I was presented with the opportunity to take over the business and assume his mantle, there was nothing else I wanted to do.
AJ: Looking back 25 years ago when you started, did you ever believe we would be where we are at today?
CH: I knew we would have digital advancement, but the rate it has evolved today is something I wouldn't have predicted, from the ability to control your garage door from your phone to just having a phone that fits in your pocket. That's something nobody could have anticipated.
What has surprised me is the number of ways you can advertise and promote your business to people, whether with email, websites, or digital advertising. The promulgation of activities and immediacy with which you can advertise to people astounds me every day.
What excites me the most is knowing that direct mail remains an essential part of any marketer's toolkit. Our business has grown year over year, and what that has shown me is that while direct mail might be very old, it's still as vibrant as any of the digital advertising and marketing tactics available today.
AJ: Why is this name change important to you and why is it important for the family legacy?
CH: The name change is important because it sums up who we are and what we do in one simple word. It also can become a household name.
The name change is a big deal for our family because it sets the stage for our third generation to prosper and, perhaps someday, to carry our legacy into its fourth generation.
AJ: What are you most excited about for the company’s future?
CH: Our new brand and the online venture we have in front of us, the potential we have in becoming a known brand nationally within the next decade, and working with my daughter, Ashley Jorgensen to bring our visions to life.
Notes from the third generation
Full disclosure: When we're off-duty, I am pleased to call Joe "Grandpa" and Craig "Dad." But aside from those family ties, I respect them for their business acumen and their ability to make their dreams come true. I am grateful for the chance to work with Craig and our entire team on this next chapter of our company.
Along with our founder and CEO, I have reflected on my own hopes and dreams for the next 50 years with mailing.com. Two words come to mind: "opportunity" and "growth."
I am grateful that I can play a role in enhancing the solid foundation that my grandfather and father built for the company that will go on as mailing.com, and I'm honored that they trust my insights as we set up mailing.com for the digital age.
At the same time we move forward, we will never lose sight of our core competencies. All of us are fortunate to work at a company that is deeply rooted in family, not just those who share the same family tree with us but also with our valued employees and you, our treasured customers who are like members of our extended family.
I am proud to be part of our family's legacy and welcome you aboard as we begin this exciting new journey!