Delight Your Customers
Extend your Reach with Digital Editions and Mobile Apps: Introducing Xerox® FreeFlow® Digital PublisherSubmitted by Bill Michael
October 2nd, 2013
Written by André Blaakman
Worldwide Marketing Manager, Workflow & Solutions, Xerox Corporation
In the world of publishing, a new era is upon us. All you have to do is turn your attention to the news and it becomes immediately apparent. Newsweek announced back in 2012 that it will end its print publication after 80 years and shift to an all-digital format in 2013. Lloyds List, a British paper publishing news about the global shipping industry since 1734 and dubbed the “world’s longest-published newspaper”, just recently announced it is going all-digital in December.
Then there are the statistics showing projections that by 2020, 80% of all media will be accessed digitally. It’s safe to say most content owners and publishers are looking at how to broaden their audience and extend their reach in the digital times of today. While some publishers have opted for the exclusively-digital route, many are delivering content in both digital and print formats.
Whether you call it a hybrid media strategy, Print + “e”, mixed media, cross media publishing – it all drives towards the same thing: the delivery of Print and Digital content to your end customers.
This migration to a Print + Digital strategy is certainly catching the eye of print service providers. How can they meet the print and digital needs of their customers and adapt with the times? How can they get in the game with a new digital revenue stream, but without a huge investment in a new IT infrastructure, or a legion of staff on payroll?
This solution, developed and offered in partnership with GTxcel, complements your print business today by creating new digital revenue streams simultaneously using the same workflow that drives your print. Digital editions of your print publications are created for Android tablets and smartphones, iPhones and iPads, PC and Mac web browsers… all automatically.
In addition to these digital editions, you can create a native app for the publication, accessible in the major app stores – Google Play, iTunes and Amazon – free or paid subscriptions. Incorporate rich media like videos, audio, slideshows, and surveys, making it more dynamic and interactive. FreeFlow Digital Publisher takes the PDF file and digital assets and utilizing our newest workflow automation software FreeFlow Core, seamlessly prepares the job for print and converts the job to digital formats readable in web browsers and most mobile device platforms – Android, Apple and Kindle.
FreeFlow Digital Publisher provides a dashboard, allowing print providers to manage the digital publications and add rich media where the customer wants it. It also provides critical analytics to track readership and clicks by platform, by region, by OS – a host of metrics that helps content owners to optimize future issues.
Imagine the possibilities:
- An annual report in print and a companion digital edition with a welcome message from the CEO.
- A print version of the division newsletter and a native app containing current and back issues.
- Print and digital services for a company kickoff event – including invitations, directions, special instructions and a host of photos and videos supporting the event.
- Manuals with how-to part replacement videos, catalogs and enrollment kits
For today’s digital savvy audiences that want content anywhere, any time, and on any device, Digital Publisher is a game changing solution.
How could offering these capabilities impact your relationships with current and prospective customers? What kind of print, digital and mobile applications can you envision all co-existing harmoniously?
Looking for more information? Check out Xerox FreeFlow Digital Publisher online!
September 5th, 2013
Written by Larry Zusman
Director, Video Personalization, XMPie, A Xerox Company
I get a chance to speak to print providers, agencies and enterprise marketers around the country and what separates the great ones from the everyday ones are inspiration, innovation, and differentiation.
Companies with exponential growth curves have examined the market and identified those areas that offer the greatest ROI in the next 5-10 years – this is their inspiration. Offerings with the highest return are oftentimes not part of the company’s core competencies. But for the successful ones, they understand that the fundamentals of the business are similar enough for them to make a go at it—and make it work.
A great example is those digital print providers who invested in cross-media solutions. Clearly, they did not have all the skills needed for this type of service offering when they started doing it – including creative services, database management skills, and Web programming to name a few. But they did have one, maybe two of the them, and felt that at the core, 1:1 cross-media publishing was an extension of print production – and they could transition to it over time and learn while expanding into this type of new service offering.
Those that made that transition are at the top of the revenue and profit pyramid of service providers. They are also the ones seriously considering entering the newest media opportunity—video personalization. But they shouldn’t be alone.
Inspiring with the Next Big Thing: Video Marketing.
With data pouring out on the exponential growth of video marketing in the future – and solutions now available that provide personalization of all content in standard format movies, the time to “get inspired” is right now for everyone!
Think about how excited your customers will be and how they will respond when they receive a video with content that is highly relevant to them — their name, company, product of choice, offer, and call to action specially chosen for them. In fact, we already know that the conversion rate of such a campaign can exceed 90%.
Changing the Playing Field with Innovation.
For those in the 1:1 print and cross-media community, as a collective group, we have “innovated” the way business communicates, interacts and responds to consumers. Instead of static, generic messaging being the norm, companies now deliver highly targeted, relevant content based on consumer demographics, geographics and psychographics (the last being the raison d’etre of enabling 1:1 communications). And as opposed to the response being the same for all, it is specific to the recipients with offers perfect for their stage in the “loyalty continuum” (for more info on this, check out books by Jill Griffin, the guru of loyalty marketing).
As a result, the typical 1-2% in a direct marketing campaign has been catapulted to 12-16%. And in some cases, the response metrics are well over 20% with these programs. When movies are driven from QR codes, are part of a comprehensive 1:1 cross-media campaign, are embedded on web pages with survey links that capture more customer “intelligence”, and used on mobile devices to advertise local businesses in your immediate GPS area; they classify as not only innovative, but rather what could be called “disruptive” communications. And that is what every marketer strives for.
Differentiating yourself from the rest.
For providers and agencies, the competition for the most progressive and aggressive clients has never been greater. But what if you have completed the process of transitioning to an MSP or are working on it? How do you then position yourself as something special within that group of select companies? This is where differentiation comes in. It is the early adopters to technologies and solutions that are seen as the companies that are innovative and unique. Once these capabilities become “mainstream,” there is little opportunity to truly differentiate from the pack.
The video marketing space is a great example of this. Companies that are making investments – not major ones by the way – to enable personalized videos as part of their 1:1 cross media campaigns are finding marketers at the highest organizational level very receptive to their sales presentations. The interest stems from the fact that these marketers also see “differentiation” in their messages as the “knife” that “cuts through the clutter of communications” in the market. They are convinced that consumers respond to these videos faster and more positively than other media channels.
Getting Involved: It’s not too late.
The top of the cross-media service provider pyramid has pulled away more this year from those below. This is clearly the result of these firms making the right business decisions several years ago. It is not too late for those not in this group to break away from where they are today and migrate “upwards”. It requires the inspiration to transition to a service provider of the newest “new media” like video personalization, innovation to create and deploy videos using tactics that generate the highest ROI, and differentiation that leverages a changing communication paradigm. For providers, agencies and their clients, the opportunity is to take full advantage of emerging technologies in the world of one to one communications for increased revenue and growth.
If you are ready to move ahead of the rest, separating yourself from the competition, then I urge you to come to the Xerox-XMPie booth at Print 13 (#1202), attend our video personalization sessions in the Marketing Pavilion or check out our Virtual Site. See, hear and feel the power of video personalization first-hand, and gain an appreciation for how it will transform your company into one of the best.
September 4th, 2013
Written by Hamidah Mansor
Packaging Business Manager, Xerox Corporation
Ever try to order a custom package for your special edition product, complete with a bar-code allowing you to track each unit? How many times have you heard, “That machine cannot be tied up with such a short run length”? Or how about a newly-launched product being tested with a limited quantity and introductory offer? You don’t want a mass production of packages, but are often faced with the challenge of meeting a minimum order quantity.
Specialty products, such as in the nutraceutical industry, are designed to meet individual requirements and are growing by leaps and bounds. According to the Global Industry Analysts Inc, the industry will be worth approximately $450B by 2015.
Imagine the process and headache to create those “individualized” packages. What a dilemma!
But now imagine the opportunity!
Does your company have a solution that can provide what brand owners demand – SKUs proliferation, faster service, no minimum quantity requirement, target marketing to specific region or demographics, to name a few.
The good news is there is a fully integrated solution that streamlines the folding carton production process, saving time and labor. Enter the Xerox Automated Packaging Solution with the Xerox iGen4 Digital Press, the first fully integrated system of its kind.
This new technology offers brand owners and converters a “touchless” end-to-end workflow to provide faster and more responsive delivery, versioning, and shorter run lengths. This is all achieved with proven Xerox printing technology, the iGen4, which was recently acclaimed one of the most productive presses in the high-end production printing industry. The inline solution is a result of an agreement reached with Kama GmbH. The solution is connected to the coater by the stacker/buffer line, provided by Epic Products International. It can handle either UV or aqueous coating, providing protection to the package against handling and also enhancing its aesthetics.
A new optional component, the SBU, allows automated stripping of the waste from printed blanks without the need for expensive tools or cumbersome manual processes. The SBU is attached to the die cutter. There’s also an optional automatic registration module for tight image alignment to the die lines.
Mass customization on packaging applications with quantities as small as one are now possible. No need to tie up the analog press; wait weeks for your order or warehouse extra blanks.
Folding carton samples will be shown at Print 13 in Xerox Booth #1202 at Chicago McCormick Place, September 8 to 12.
How do you view the opportunities in customizable, short-run on-demand digital packaging?
August 29th, 2013
Written by Derrick Doi
Vice President, Quick and Franchise Print Segment, Xerox Corporation
Sir Speedy Orlando counts on the local economy for nearly all of its business, about two-thirds of which comes from the metro area’s healthcare, hospitality and conventions industries.
These industries continue to rely on printing, and Sir Speedy Orlando delivers. The company is on track for a second consecutive year of 10 percent revenue growth, driven largely by digital color printing and wide-format printing of signs and banners.
The digital color growth was somewhat in jeopardy a short while ago, as the company’s workhorse digital color press grew less and less reliable. In seeking to replace it, Owners Laurence Nye and Mike LeVangie elicited recommendations from other Sir Speedy franchisees, which led them to choose a Xerox Color 800 Press.
The Xerox press has delivered a number of new capabilities to Sir Speedy Orlando. Printing on heavier stocks and synthetics has given customers more choices for restaurant menus and collateral. Clear toner has provided another creative wrinkle to business cards, menus and other pieces. And increased processing power has made variable information printing more productive.
But, Nye and LeVangie said, “What really has made an impact on the business is the Color 800’s ability to produce the work. We have basically no down time with this machine.” It put an end to what had been a very difficult time, they said “We had a good amount of work, but we weren’t always able to produce it because the machine was down. The Color 800 has made a big difference in our business—and in our lives.
Their great experience with the Color Press has opened them to additional opportunities for replacing their aging black-and-white devices with Xerox printers. See and hear Nye and LeVangie make additional observations about their business and their new Color 800 Press in this video.
Is print still driving growth in your operation? If yes, what types of printing are delivering? If no, where are you finding growth?
If you enjoyed this post, you may also be interested in:
- How a Print Provider Offered a Fresh Take on a Complex Government Job, Reducing Costs by 40%
- Industry Knowledge, Networking and Collaboration – Three Ingredients Essential for Growth.
- Direct Marketing: Get Relevant, Get Results – Part I
- The TransPromo space is alive and well – are you taking advantage? This Printer Did, Reducing Client’s Statement Costs by 30%
August 8th, 2013
The following is an excerpt from Matthew Parker’s Seven Myths of Print Sales series:
If you throw enough mud some of it sticks
This is a saying that I hear a lot when I’m talking to print salespeople. They are focused on creating as much activity as possible. They are contacting as many customers as possible as many times as possible.
The main object is to get a lot of quote requests. These salespeople work on the basis that the more prices they give out, the more work they are likely to book in.
You have to admire these people. They are slogging away in a difficult market place, day in, day out. It is certainly hard work. The trouble is, that this sort of activity tends to generate revenue, not profit.
Being constantly on the phone is not necessarily a sign of creating profits People who challenge this myth tend to create better customer partnerships. They are moving away from commodity sales and into a more profitable value-added sale. These customers tend to buy solutions that mean they stay with the same supplier for longer. So the printer is in control of their sales pipeline. And they achieve better profits.
People who believe in the activity myth find it harder to generate profits. They tend to end up with commodity sales and commodity customers. They don’t have the same control over their sales pipeline. They are not achieving their full potential.
However, people who believe in the activity myth refuse to believe this.
Activity equals sales
Sometimes this is true and sometimes it isn’t. To demonstrate this I would like to quote some research from a book called The Challenger Sale. This research is based on profiling over 6,000 sales people from a variety of business sectors.
The profiling shows that there are five clear types of salesperson. One of these is the hard worker. The hard worker can get results. In fact, in commodity type sales, the hard workers form the biggest percentage of high performing salespeople.
However, when it comes to high complexity sales it’s a very different story. Here only 10% of the high performing salespeople were hard workers. There were other types of salesperson who performed much better.
In general, we should draw a slightly different conclusion than activity equals sales.
Activity equals commodity sales
Many of the hard work salespeople who focus on activity are winning work on price. They are focused on getting the orders in. But the rate of their activity means that it is hard to spend too much time on one sale. It’s hard to work on getting a decent profit margin from the customer when you are this active. It’s also hard to sell anything more than a standard print job.
That means we should also draw another conclusion about activity.
Activity equals disloyal customers
Because busy salespeople are winning work on price they are also more likely to lose their customers. Chances are, that as their customer chose on price, they will continue to do so. So as soon as another print sales person comes along with a lower price the customer will be off to a new print company. The busy salesperson has to stay really busy. They need to replace all the customers that are leaving.
To continue reading this post from Matthew Parker, click here.
Matthew Parker has been buying print for over 20 years. He’s had over 1,400 sales pitches from printers. Now he’s using that experience to help printing companies engage with their customers and sell print more profitably. Find out more about Matthew on his site.
Adding Dimension and Texture to Print with the Xerox Color 800/1000 Press and EFI Fiery Image EnhanceSubmitted by Christina Vullo
June 18th, 2013
Written by Leon Williams
Chief Scientist, EFI
Perhaps you knew of the ability to add clear dry ink to images and text with the Xerox Color 800/1000 Press – employing spot or flood creative effects that enhance the value of the output. But what if you could also add dimension and texture to the output? What opportunities could that open for your customers and your business?
When Xerox first discussed the possibility of enabling dimensional printing by using multiple passes of Clear Dry Ink (CDI), it sparked excitement at EFI to create a new workflow to simplify its use. The result is a new Fiery Image Enhance Visual Editor (IEVE) that can automatically add clear channel separations to any image for professional looking textures in just seconds. While previous solutions had required knowledge of sophisticated publishing tools and a good deal of artistic flair to achieving dimensional effects, IEVE can extract photos from any PostScript or PDF file, automatically derive layers for the application of clear dry ink and place these new layers into the original file for a custom dimensional effect.
Like the original release of IEVE for quick photo corrections, the focus in on quality and productivity. It’s all about getting the best, saleable print through the press as fast as possible. The new software enables dimensional texturing of all images at once or individually with each image receiving custom treatment. To further simplify the process of getting just the right level of texture, IEVE employs novel visualization of the resulting CDI coated photos right on the screen. A technique known in the video gaming industry as “bump mapping” enables the operator to see and modify how the resulting levels of Clear Dry Ink will appear before ever printing a single page. This results in extremely fast turnaround for beautiful, high value prints.
To truly appreciate what multi-pass CDI and IEVE can do for your prints and your customer, you really must experience it firsthand. The results are both eye-catching and delightful. Whether creating brochures, newsletters, direct mail, point of purchase displays, posters, menus, photo-book covers or business cards the results are sure to grab attention and satisfy clients all with minimum effort. To twist the old saying, “you have to feel it to believe it.”
If you enjoyed this post, you may also want to look at:
- Are We Clear? – FreeFlow VIPP Pro Publisher and Clear Dry Ink
- How the InterContinental Hotels Group Was Able to Cut through the Clutter
- 3 Application Ideas For Your Shop
- Leveraging a Self-Promo Direct Marketing Campaign to your Benefit
Leon Williams is currently the Chief Scientist for Fiery at Electronics for Imaging. Over his 13 year career with EFI, he has managed the development of interpreters, color profiling, color management, RIP performance, compression, halftoning, rendering, image processing, hardware acceleration and drivers. He now investigates and develops advanced technologies for future EFI products.
May 16th, 2013
Written by Dharminder Biharie, Business Development Manager
Xerox Graphic Communications, The Netherlands
There’s a good chance that prior to the economy taking a major hit in 2007 and 2008, you didn’t have to spend too much time pulling hairs over your sales process and strategy. Business was running well, sales were high, and your printing presses were running non-stop. And your sales rep – why would you have possibly worried about him? He was achieving the organization’s goals, customers loved him (he was always on the phone with them!), and he was a likable guy who had worked at your company for many years.
But now you have customers who don’t love him. He is not connecting with customers and prospects on his phone, e-mail, or social media. His cubicle was always vacant from being onsite with customers, but now he is always in the office. The fact is that most sales processes have changed over the last 5 years. The graphic arts industry has become a high tech business, where automating business processes to reduce costs is a key to survival. If your commercial department hasn’t grown to meet outside changes, you are probably facing challenges with sales and proposition.
Here is a list of 10 challenges in the sales process:
- If you can’t explain the added value of digital or litho print, you will end up with customers basing their purchases solely on price comparison. Always sell using return on marketing investment (ROMI). Even business cards deliver ROMI.
- You don’t understand the environment of your customers. Are they specialized in specific markets with specific requirements? Are there trends that you can use to offer recommendations and solutions?
- Your proposition doesn’t match your online profiles (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc.) or your website is old and out-of-date. Keep online information updated and use free metrics software such as Google Analytics to see how you’re doing online.
- You don’t actually know what problems to solve. When you are offering digital print, always ask if you are solving a logistic or a marketing problem for your customer. Otherwise you will run into the same price comparison problem mentioned above.
- You are not familiar with the changed landscape of communication. Today we have more channels to communicate with. Be prepared so you can use them to your advantage. Integration is key.
- You do not have a system in place to calculate and discuss return on marketing investments (ROMI).
- Maybe you have calculated ROMI, but you still present it as a proposal. Communication plans should always be presented as projects, not proposals. Help your client visualize the experience.
- You have a top-10 list of your customers in order of % revenue in your account plan but you haven’t asked your customers who comprise their top-10 in % revenue. Also ask what kind of headaches they have in communication, marketing, sales and adding/selling value. This will help you help them.
- Are you a sales (500 doors to cover), account manager (100 doors to cover), key account manager (5 doors to cover) or trusted advisor (customers come to you)? Knowing your role can improve the quality of engagement with your customers.
- You don’t know what customers think about you and your company. If this is true, you almost certainly don’t know what your customer’s end-users think of them. Knowing this information can help you to improve your customer’s business, and as a result improve your business as well.
Don’t start to panic as you read all of this. Rome wasn’t built in a day, and improvement is a constantly evolving process. Try to improve your quality of sale by starting with a goal to focus on 3 of these 10 points. I am convinced that this will help you improve your relationships and interactions with customers, and in turn, impact your business.
Interested in similar topics? You may want to check out: