May 13th, 2013
Written by Bill Michael
eMarketing Manager, Xerox Corporation
You understand the benefits of direct marketing, its effectiveness for your customers and the value it can deliver for your bottom line. But actually doing it, and doing it well – now that’s a completely different story!
DMA states the response rate of direct mail is more than 30x higher than that of email, with an average response rate of 4.4% compared with the 0.12% of email. Offering direct marketing services can help you deliver endless value to your customers, transitioning your company from a print provider to a trusted adviser for marketing strategy and print production.
But becoming a strategic partner involves more than simply adding to your service offerings – you’ll also need a sales team in place capable of selling direct marketing services. If this sounds intimidating – just remember, you aren’t alone and Rome certainly wasn’t built in a day. If making the jump into marketing services was so easy, everyone would be doing it!
We recently gathered with a large group of print providers, marketing service providers and industry experts to discuss everything-direct marketing at the Gil Hatch Center for Customer Innovation in Webster, New York. Our Thought Leadership Workshop covered:
- Psychology based marketing and how to trigger the unconscious minds of your consumers
- The art and science of selling direct marketing
- Real examples of how customer database information can be utilized to market more personally
- Integrated direct marketing opportunities using XMPie offerings
Psychology-Based Marketing: Direct Marketing that taps into consumers’ unconscious mind
During our workshop, Jeanette McMurtry of e4marketing explained the importance of understanding the thought processes and unconscious mind of your consumer. This allows you to better position direct marketing campaigns for success. Brand loyalty doesn’t exist today like in the past. 52% of a company’s ‘highly loyal’ customers will be reduced in one year’s time, with 33% leaving for a competing brand. 60% of brands will lose at least half of their customers from year-to-year.
So what does ESP and direct marketing have in common? Jeanette explained how human behavior is based upon two fundamental premises: the avoidance of pain and pursuit of pleasure. Identifying the pain your customer’s end-users are trying to avoid, and addressing through a well-thought out direct marketing campaign can drive incredible results. Each consumer’s behavior is guided by its id, ego, and superego, as explained in Freud’s theory of personality. If your customer is looking to create a campaign to reach 100 consumers, they are actually reaching out to 300 because of the varying personalities! As a marketer – it is critical to understand how different personalities affect loyalty to brand and purchasing behavior.
Do you know what makes your customer’s target audience feel happy and what they value? Happiness and an understanding of what is important to them can drive purchase behavior. By knowing what messaging will resonate with end-users, a campaign can more accurately be designed. Edelman Good Purpose Survey found that 71% say they will make a point to buy from companies with similar values as their own. Is it a coincidence that this year’s Super Bowl ad that generated one of the top purchase-intent scores was created for Got Milk? They understood their female audience and what messaging would resonate, crafting an advertisement that conveyed how their product can help in the caring for their family.
Jeanette then went into detail on the importance of color and messaging in campaigns, and how they each uniquely affect consumer response. Studies show within 90 seconds, a consumer will make an unconscious judgment of a product, and 60-90% of that judgment is based upon the use of color. Choosing the right messaging can help tap into consumers’ unconscious. Words such as ‘dependable’, ‘limited time’, and ‘approved’ are proven to be emotionally charged. How a message is framed is also a critical consideration, as ‘free’ speaks louder than ‘two-for-one’.
Easier said than done, but by understanding the unconscious mind of your customer’s end-user, you can better develop a psychologically relevant campaign that will drive a desired behavior.
A Look Inside Relevant Direct Marketing Programs
Shelley Sweeney, Vice President Service Bureau/Direct Marketing at Xerox, shared several examples of direct marketing campaigns that have utilized database information to market more personally. One that really stood out was a campaign for the New York Mets, who were moving into a new stadium but were struggling to drive attendance. In a typical day, a consumer is exposed to roughly 3,000 media messages. They pay attention to 52 and will positively remember 4. For the Mets, a relevant and highly personalized campaign was necessary to drive a behavior – purchase of season tickets!
The campaign targeted group sales, using a database of 3,000 groups that had attended games in the past, as well as a purchased mailing list that brought the total to 6,800 groups. Database information included the organization name, contact name, address and email address. Variable marketing pieces were created and included the name of the organization, the group leaders surname sprawled across the back of a jersey (using XMPie uImage) and specific messaging and imagery reflecting the group’s category and likely interests (boy scout organizations included different messaging/images than business organizations, for example).
The list of 6,800 groups was split in half to create a test group (Shelley emphasized this during the workshop), with 3,400 receiving static mass-marketing pieces similar to what the Mets had been sending in the past – while the other 3,400 received the newly- created customized mailers. Three weeks later, a follow-up mailing was sent to the same divided list.
The results were quite impressive: the data-driven mailer saw a 57.2% increase in group ticket sales over the static control mailer. Revenue from the data-driven mailer was 40.9% higher than revenue from the static mailer. Even more impressive, the Mets saw an 80% increase in group ticket sales over the previous season.
What have you found to be critical considerations for successful direct marketing? Check out these other direct-marketing related posts:
- Define Your Target Market as Tightly as Possible
- Tough Questions about the PSP-MSP Evolution
- Leveraging a Self-Promo Direct Marketing Campaign to your Benefit
- You Don’t Have to Become a Marketing Services Provider to Offer Marketing Services
Part II of our Direct Marketing recap will discuss the art and science of selling direct marketing services, as well as a look into integrated direct marketing opportunities using XMPie. Jeanette McMurtry of e4marketing can be contacted for more information on the Psychology of Direct Marketing.
April 11th, 2013
Written by Susan Weiss
Manager, Xerox Worldwide Customer Business Development
One of the best ways to gain an edge in today’s hyper-competitive graphic communications industry is by defining, pursuing and become experts in target markets.
That’s how Barb Pellow, group director, Infotrends, set the stage for our recent Business Development Series webinar on “Targeting the Right Markets,” which featured her and Robert Blakely, vice president, Business Development, Echo Communicate, a Baltimore, Md.-based graphic communications company.
In telling his company’s story, Blakely didn’t so much echo Pellow’s comments as amplify them. When targeting markets, he said, “Start with the tightest vertical focus possible. Find the company most like your initial win, and expand from there.”
That’s what Echo Communicate did after building a successful membership recruitment and retention business with US Lacrosse, that sport’s national governing body. Blakely initiated the business with a cold call about printing the Baltimore-based organization’s membership cards. The conversation quickly escalated to broader membership issues, leading US Lacrosse to give Echo access to its membership data. “We did something with their data that they hadn’t done yet,” Blakely said. “We quantified their pain.”
That helped give Echo the credibility to develop a highly automated, XMPie-software-based membership retention solution for US Lacrosse. In the first year, it boosted retention by 26 percent.
With that success, Echo began pursuing like organizations for its solution, focusing exclusively on national governing bodies of other sports. The tight definition optimized the expertise Echo was developing, and made collecting target information easy. “We had a list of national governing bodies in just a few minutes,” Blakely said.
Echo introduced the solution by using a multi-channel invitation with personalized sports imagery to invite prospects to a webinar featuring a US Lacrosse executive. Of 80 invitees, 40 attended. They heard a compelling message. “Nothing is more powerful than having our client tell their peers how wonderful it is to work with us,” Blakely said.
Several attendees are new customers. Because the solution is so automated and specialized, sales cycles and rollouts have been progressively easier and faster. And because the Echo team is now immersed in the vertical, its expertise has grown exponentially. In addition, margins are higher than in the traditional print business. In short, Blakely said, “It’s a winner.”
To hear a replay of the “Targeting the Right Markets” webinar, click here. And be sure to sign up for our upcoming 2013 Business Development Webinars, including “Targeting: Small and Medium-Sized Businesses…the Volume Aggregation Opportunity” on April 17 and “Targeting: Vertical Markets…The Enterprise Opportunity on June 12,” click here.
Have you experienced success by tightly defining a vertical and offering customized solutions? What drives your successes in targeting markets?
If you enjoyed this post, you may also be interested in:
- XMPie Cross-Media Campaign Boosts College Admissions for Maryland Institution
- Do you Encourage your Customers to Interact?
- Personalized Renewal Notices Boost Membership Rates for Football Club
- You Don’t Have to Become a Marketing Services Provider to Offer Marketing Services
Susan Weiss, manager, Xerox Worldwide Customer Business Development, is Xerox’s host for the 2013 Business Development Webinar Series
March 20th, 2013
Written by Bill Michael
eMarketing Manager, Xerox Corporation
Your digital printing capabilities allow you to provide your customers with benefits such as quicker turnaround times, shorter-runs at lower costs, and value-added services such as variable data printing and personalization. In the process, you reap benefits such as elimination of warehousing costs and reduced waste. Your customers appreciate the low prices you offer to print their latest company collateral run of 200. They find it extremely useful that the hard proofs you send them are accurate and representative of their final product. And they’ve surely come to rely on your two-day (…and even as it makes you cringe, the sometimes same-day) turnaround that you’ve become known for. But how can you be sure that your customers of today and tomorrow know about your many other services and offerings? What better way to demonstrate these to your customers and prospects, first hand, than through a self-promotional direct marketing campaign!
In a prior blog post we discussed the importance of self-promo campaigns, but let’s take a look at how a 2011 Xerox Best-of-the-Best Winner, CopyCat AS of Norway, put their plan into action. Their direct marketing campaign promoted an upcoming open house event, showcasing their capabilities – trusted, true and new – and resulted in 20 orders from brand new customers.
When CopyCat purchased their new Xerox Color 1000 Press with clear dry ink capabilities, they wanted to not only spread the great news to customers and prospects, but also show them what this new technology could offer. Clear dry ink provided an almost limitless range of creative possibilities, allowing their customers’ printed images to pop off the page with selective spot or flood effects, creative patterns, and gloss marks. CopyCat wanted to invite customers and prospects to attend an upcoming open house event, giving them a chance to see their new technology and to meet their friendly staff.
CopyCat decided to show off their direct marketing capabilities by producing a cross-media invitation, complete with clear dry ink effects and a QR code taking recipients to their own personalized response webpage. By teaming up with local photographers, they were able to capture recipient attention by featuring provoking imagery. Photographers made up a portion of CopyCat’s customer base and prospect list, so the print quality and use of clear dry ink within the campaign really resonated with that audience. Personalization was integrated into each piece using XMPie uDirect, opening the minds of the many recipients to CopyCat’s direct marketing services that they were previously unaware of.
1,800 invitations were produced and sent, generating a response rate of over 10 percent and a conversion rate of 50% – filling CopyCat’s open house event. An additional 130 respondents that couldn’t attend the event requested more information on CopyCat’s business and services. Best of all, as a result of the convergence of this creative campaign with a tangible call to action and an appealing offer, CopyCat received 20 orders from brand new customers in the weeks following the event. The potential lifetime value of these new customers and the lasting impact it could have for CopyCat is something I’m sure they are very excited about.
Interested in more topics similar to direct marketing campaigns or success stories? You may want to check out:
- When it comes to Direct Marketing Campaigns: Practice what you Preach
- Cross-Media Marketing Campaign Generates 10% Response, Draws Crowd and Nets New Business
- 3 Application Ideas for your Shop
- Stunning Digital Printing Showcase Helps Fuel 30% Growth for Printer
Have a success story you’d like to share for international recognition? Are you a member of the Xerox Premier Partner Global Network? Enter into the Xerox Best-of-the-Best Contest today – entries close April 3, 2013!
March 5th, 2013
Written by Jo Oliphant
Manager, Continuous Feed Europe, Xerox Corporation
Let’s take a moment to recap Hunkeler Innovationdays (HID), which recently took place in Lucerne, Switzerland. As trade shows go, this one rewrites all the rules typically followed and that’s probably because the host of the show is a vendor themselves; Hunkeler AG. My experiences with trade shows is that typically everyone wants to try and be bigger than everyone else, which has resulted in some elaborate and elegant stand designs, some of which don’t actually work effectively! Inevitably, the trade show venues have expensive food and drink for sale and there is a lot of walking to do. HID levels all of that. One hall, food and drink is supplied, the big vendors all have the same floor space and there are strict limits on how high (and therefore how big) everything is. The result? A more “industrial” approach to stand design. The best part of HID is the attendees: almost all are decision makers or key influencers and that calibre of attendee is reflected in the depth of conversations taking place.
Let’s take a look at what Xerox had to say at HID 2013.
At Hunkeler 2011, Xerox announced the CiPress 500 Production Inkjet System. Hunkeler 2013 saw the introduction of the Single Engine Duplex (SED) variant, extending the capability of the press to customers who either do not have the volume or the space to merit a Twin Engine Duplex (TED) system but still want to take advantage of printing vibrant colours on commodity offset stocks with strong process controls, a very powerful FreeFlow Print Server and strong environmental credentials (everyone wants this attribute, but doesn’t want to have to pay extra for it).
This new variant offers customers an additional growth path and also the capability of additional resilience for customers with TED installations. Some customers may start with a SED and as volumes grow can upgrade to a second SED and configure it to run either as two separate SED’s or one TED…meaning if one system requires maintenance then the other engine can be configured to run on its own, maintaining some level of productivity. Secondly, if a customer has a very short turnaround time on a job but has a larger job running at the same time, then it’s entirely feasible to run both SED’s with different jobs in parallel.
The CiPress platform is showing itself to be extremely capable in respect of its media handling capabilities. Some 30+ different applications were on show for customers to take away, including live work from a German CiPress customer; CWN Druck. This live work included children’s customised catalogues with a digital outer shell and offset printed contents, the digital shell from the Bon Prix catalogue (Bon Prix are part of the very large Otto Group) and tool catalogues on 40gsm paper. In addition to these there were also postcards on 9pt (220gsm) stock, some books on different plain papers and the real “wow” application of a very heavy coverage flyer printed on 29gsm stock. This super light stock is bible paper and CiPress is the only inkjet capable of printing onto this weight of stock, the only other way of printing this is to use an offset press.
Xerox previewed a new product called the Color 8250 Production Press attracting a lot of customer interest. This is an 8,250 full colour A4 sheets per hour cut sheet printer intended for transactional or direct mail volumes between 1 and 3 million A4’s per month.
The 8250 prints on plain uncoated papers and offers more of a business colour quality than graphic arts quality colour and better fits what might typically be expected on transactional, direct mail and trans-promo applications. It is powered by the FreeFlow Print Server as available on every other Xerox Production Press and is expected to ship in Europe early in Quarter 3 2013.
Xerox also reinforced the messaging on workflow and had GMC , XMPie and Solimar Systems all demonstrating how their workflows can elegantly connect different customers business requirements to ensure optimised presentation of their information for a variety of different output platforms. In addition to the workflow and the print platforms, Xerox continued to reinforce the story on business development; an area which many companies take advantage of from Xerox.
Did you attend HID 2013? What did you think? Did you see anything that made you say “wow”?
Interested in more topics similar to Hunkeler and Inkjet technology? You may like:
- What the Impika Acquisition Means for Xerox and our Customers
- Overall Equipment Efficiency (OEE)
- Newspapers: Sustainable Business Model or Yesterday’s News
- Printed Customer Communications – Marketing Opportunity or Inconvenience?
- Can Digital, Inkjet and Offset Production Printing Coexist?
- Is Digital Printing Killing Offset?
January 24th, 2013
Written by Dharminder Biharie
Business Development Manager
Xerox Graphic Communication, The Netherlands
Would you like to be helped by a surgeon who flunked out of med school? Or a dentist with extremely bad teeth? Or how about a social media guru with only 10 connections? I can’t imagine that prospective customers would be lining up to be helped by an amateur surgeon, an inept dentist or a clumsy self-made social media guru.
The same applies to direct marketing. Having the skills, knowledge, and expertise to implement a successful direct marketing campaign is great – but there comes a point where talk must turn into execution. How do you show prospects and customers that your business is capable of transferring that knowledge and delivering a campaign with tangible results?
Time to execute.
I see many companies struggle to propose and sell cross-media campaigns to their customers. When I ask them how many times they have executed a proper cross media campaign…too often I get the response ‘none’. That’s a shame. If you sell direct marketing campaigns, I strongly advise you to use your own sales skills, eat your own dog food, and impress your customers with your own brilliant direct marketing campaign. The reasoning behind a self-promotion direct marketing strategy is quite simple … because nobody wants to be helped by… yes, you guessed it, the infamous amateur.
Simply put, a client is much more willing to place their trust with a successful, proven business model. If your company’s self-promotion campaign is delivering results beyond expectations, tout it. Your own results are a great starting point to promote yourself and your business. This will also help you catch the attention of your prospective customers.
But proceed with risk. You must realize that every minuscule hiccup has the potential to drive prospective customers away from your offerings. A QR code leading to a page not optimized for mobile may not be forgiven, as well as a faulty PURL or pages that are ultimately illegible on mobile devices. Every click and any negative distraction will not help your cause. It is therefore imperative to extensively test your campaign with a target sample group, capturing and measuring the responses and optimizing as appropriate.
Success is the Foundation of Persuasion.
Cross-media campaigns, or campaigns with multiple touch points carry a certain ‘cool’ factor. They resonate with customers, stay in the forefront of their minds, and leave a lasting impression. A successful campaign generates more buzz (think free advertising) – especially in the world of social media we live in today. If you find a lot of positive tweets and your campaign has yielded a substantial number of likes, then consider your efforts well done. This, in turn, offers you the opportunity to further market your company’s services and capabilities by creating a web promotion, success case or sales presentation complete with metrics, images, and examples of your campaign’s success. Your self-promotion campaign has now provided a first-hand illustration of your capabilities, knowledge and expertise…a persuasive power boost for sure!
And be sure to realize that the power of your campaign (and the future campaigns you implement for your customers) extends beyond the screen. Results can’t always be measured purely by analytic software. The most significant metric is the impression your messaging has left in the mind of your customer, inspiring him or her to act. When done successfully, you will be known by your customers as, yes, the trusted provided of direct marketing services, rather than the amateur.
Interested in similar topics? You may want to check out:
- To Tweet or Not to Tweet? Are You Old or New School?
- Newspapers: Sustainable Business Model or Yesterday’s News?
- Four Ways Brands Can Avoid Losing Followers
- Are Online Ads Less Effective Than TV and Print Ads?
Dharminder Biharie is a Business Development Manager with Xerox Graphic Communication in The Netherlands. To get in touch with Dharminder, please contact Dharminder.email@example.com, + 31 (0) 6 2020 499 42.
Looking to boost awareness of your company’s capabilities and attract new customers? The Xerox Best-of-the-Best Program can help!Submitted by Bill Michael
December 17th, 2012
Written by Mary Roddy
Marketing Manager, Premier Partners Global Network
Innovative personalized chocolate packaging that produces $100,000 in profit through a single holiday season, a direct marketing campaign that helps Mercedes-Benz UK achieve a 53:1 ROI, a wedding invitation book that helps drive over $2.5 million in revenue….what do all of these have in common? They are all previous winners of the Xerox Best-of-the-Best Program, a worldwide award contest, open exclusively to members of the Xerox Premier Partners Network.
This program draws participation from the most successful and innovative print shops across the globe, showcasing creativity and business impact using Xerox digital technology. In addition to recognition of great digital work by the graphic communications community, winners receive outstanding marketing and promotional opportunities. Each winning entrant is featured in a case study which can be used with customers and prospects, posted on the web, discussed in presentations, and as a proof point in email and direct marketing campaigns. Winners are showcased at regional, national, and international industry tradeshows/events and also in international press releases.
Today we’re announcing the 2013 Xerox Best-of-the-Best Program will open for entries on January 8, 2013. Members of the Premier Partners Network can submit their work in any of the following categories:
-Digital and Offset
If you are a member of the Premier Partners Network –be sure to take advantage of this tremendous opportunity! On January 8th, visit the Best-of-the-Best website at www.xerox.com/bestofthebest to get started.
If you are not a member of the Xerox Premier Partners Network, visit the Premier Partners Portal today at www.xeroxpremierpartners.com to learn about the program and benefits members receive, and become a member!
You’ll want to hurry – this year’s Best-of-the-Best Contest closes April 3, 2013!
July 26th, 2012
Written By Joel Basa
Direct Mail. I’ve heard many say it’s not going away anytime soon and my stack of mail from yesterday is enough evidence for me to think that statement is correct. I have the privilege to work on some direct mail campaigns for Xerox and I’ve learned campaign development is fun but challenging work. What do you think is the most critical piece for direct mail success? Let me list and define a few factors that weigh on success(in my opinion) and I hope you’ll vote on what you think is the most critical.
Loosely defined as who and where you send to or who is your target audience. This could potentially be the most critical aspect.
The actual physical design of the direct mail. Things like, color, dimensional etc.
Is this combined with other sales initiatives or programs? Is combining with other media such as e-mail and web important?
Product/Service Being Marketed
How appealing the actual service or product is affects success. A direct mail campaign on twist ties may not be appealing but a campaign on the latest and greatest electronic gadget might be.
What do you think? Let the debate begin. Vote below.