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Flushing, NY, Customer Services Manager Howie Kobrin

Howie Kobrin never misses an opportunity to boost Business Connect.

One example: While picking up his daughter from a newly opened dance studio last year, Kobrin, the customer services manager at Little Neck Station in Flushing, NY, struck up a conversation with the owner.

“She mentioned that she wanted to spread the word that the dance studio was open,” he recalls.

Kobrin knew what to do next: He submitted the owner’s contact information as a lead through Business Connect, which led to the studio signing up for a $7,000 Every Door Direct Mail campaign.

Simple conversations like that have helped Kobrin bring in more than $1 million in Business Connect sales each year for the past four years.

USPS is encouraging Postmasters and other customer services managers and supervisors to follow Kobrin’s lead in August, which is Business Connect Month.

To help others promote the program, Kobrin offers these tips:

• Get business cards from everyone. “If I see a competitor’s truck at a business, I stop in and talk with the owner or the manager and ask for a card. We could win shipping business from them,” he says.

“I’ll also ask for cards from customers that come in and drop off bags and parcels. It may look like we have that person’s business, but they may be shipping with others as well.”

• Don’t be afraid to seek leads outside of your ZIP Code. “Your ZIP gets credit, no matter where the business is,” he says.

• Be polite and confident when talking with a potential customer. “Offering a service that will benefit them gives me confidence. When I walk in, I’m going in knowing I’m going to help them,” Kobrin says.

“Emphasize that we can help them save on shipping costs and talk about other ways to help, such as our package pickup service. They don’t have to drag boxes into the Post Office.”

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