Sustainable alumni mailings for the world’s best universities.

With a large circulation for its alumni magazine, The University of Cambridge was on a mission to be more sustainable, whilst increasing engagement and loyalty with their alumni.

When esteemed academics move onto pastures new following graduation, they become your greatest advocates. Keeping in touch with your alumni is essential for several reasons: encouraging loyalty even after graduates have obtained a degree, circulating important University-related news, and requesting support for fundraising.

Finding a direct mail communication partner for a high-profile University alumni mailing is critical to the success of the campaign for several reasons:

  • To guarantee the security of their graduates database in line with GDPR guidelines.
  • Provide the most cost-effective direct mail postage costs.
  • To ensure a timely delivery so that content remains relevant.
  • Leave behind the smallest carbon footprint possible with a sustainable print and mailing solution.

As the world continues to evolve, and we find ourselves becoming more environmentally conscious, being able to communicate the right message in a sustainable way is fundamental.


Our sustainable solution

We provided the University of Cambridge with an eco-friendly alternative to package their CAM magazine, which is posted to their alumni three times per year, from our carbon neutral hub. Paper envelopes were not a realistic option for this campaign due to the thickness of the contents; in addition, the University was keen to use a clear mailing wrap. Therefore, Precision proposed the idea of a new potato starch mailing film to the University, offering a solution that would tick all the boxes – a compostable eco-mailing film that still retained transparency.

When King Edward VII’s name was given to a new variety of the humble potato, no one could have guessed – including this former royal student himself – that just over a century later, potato starch would play a part in his University’s sustainability strategy. Fast forward to the 21st century and the potato, or rather its waste, has provided an eco-friendly solution to help organisations chip away at their plastic footprint.

Being a carbon neutral business, it was critical for us to ensure that that this new eco-wrap fully decomposed within days. We filmed the process for visual proof, and it exceeded our expectations: full decomposition took place in under 10 days! Potato starch mailing film has now been adopted as our default material for wrapped sustainable direct mailing campaigns.

In addition to alumni mailings, Precision also specialises in the sustainable print and mail of faculty newsletters and student recruitment campaigns. The latter is essential in assuring potential enrollees of a University’s commitment to sustainability. In today’s social climate, a simple ‘sustainable practices’ memo displayed on a website homepage is not enough. When it comes to the environment, the public desire to see that an establishment is following through with its promises.

Switching our alumni direct mailings from traditional polythene has the potential of removing 3.75 tonnes from landfill per annum and complements the University of Cambridge’s Environmental Sustainability Vision.

– A spokesperson from the University of Cambridge.

Taking to social

Our comprehensive sustainable direct mailing service enables universities to be proactive and prove that they are committed to their word, by replacing old practices with ones that are environmentally conscious. Recipients of CAM magazine then took to social media to share their positive viewpoints on their latest magazine covers, showcasing the impact that this sustainable switch has had on their alumni engagement.

Strong alumni support speaks volumes, provides value, and is often sought after by many new potential students. Therefore, having a positive representation of your establishment with your students throughout their time with you, and afterwards, is vital as it provides you with the opportunity to build and maintain trust with students.


Dr Chetan Narshi @rheumi_ …

“Great to see that my alumni magazine from @Cambridge_Uni arrived in a compostable cover. #nomoreplastic #savetheplanet”


Tanya Filer @TanyaFiler …

“Nice job @ Cambridge_Uni – alumni magazine on responsibly sourced paper & in compostable & biodegradable packaging #GreenCambridge”


Emily Slade @EmilyJo24633834 …

“@cambridge_uni @camalumni Received my Alumni Mag in 100% compostable film wrap. Hurray! #plasticfree #renewable #compostable film”