NEW YORK (MainStreet) – Anyone who’s ever made the regrettable decision to have a package delivered to their home address while they’re stuck at work all day probably has a visceral reaction to those little “missed delivery” slips that mock them from their front doors when they get home. It’s a problem only made worse by the explosion in online shopping in recent years.
Now, one major shipping company is looking to make those notices a thing of the past.
UPS (Stock Quote: UPS), previously known for its delivery agents clad in brown short-pants and more recently known for its annoyingly catchy “logistics” jingle, announced a new set of features Monday it calls “My Choice”, which will give package recipients an alert via phone, SMS, or email naming a two-hour time slot for their delivery the day before it is made. If they’re not home at the time, they can also electronically sign for that delivery via phone, SMS or email and indicate where they want the package left. The program will start on Oct. 3.
In addition to those free features, for an extra $5 customers can reschedule a delivery for a more convenient time or re-route the package to a different address or UPS store. UPS CEO Scott Davis explained the move as a way to keep up with changing customer expectations in the age of digital shopping.
"In the world of personalized commerce, producers no longer simply push goods through the supply chain,” Davis said at the launch event Wednesday. “Consumers pull whatever they want, when they want it and from whomever they choose. The power of the individual consumer has grown.”
With e-commerce reaching record levels during last year’s holiday shopping season, the company is hoping to cash in on this year’s take, while at the same time improving its bottom line with savings on fuel and storage costs. Indeed, as Davis said, one delivery attempt is better than three.
And, since no good product launch is complete without celebrity sponsorship, UPS is stretching its business model to the relationship between an NFL quarterback and his receiver, choosing lengendary quarterback Joe Montana as the face of the new service.
In the words of Davis, “in a sense, UPS is a quarterback and we’re ensuring that consumers – our receivers – have the best reception stats in the game.“
While we’re happy to see Joe Cool embark on what should hopefully be a less embarrassing sponsorship than his too-much-information endorsement of Hanes underwear, UPS will surely win some new fans regardless of who stars in the commercials.
Speaking of Joe Montana, check out MainStreet's roundup of the 10 Best Celebrity Spokesmen!