By Christine Winter, PR/marketing programs manager, XMPie, A Xerox Company
Today is my 25th birthday. Yes, I know. Your reaction was probably something like “Oh my goodness…you’re such a baby,” or “Good for you! Your car insurance premium will go down now.”
I’m not telling you this because I want you to send me a card or gift like my grandma did, call and sing to me like one of my co-workers did, take me out to lunch like my future father-in-law did, write on my Facebook wall like 56 of my friends did (and counting), take me shopping like my future husband is going to later, or take me out to dinner tonight like my mom and brother will….although all of these things are awesome and much appreciated. The fact is, I just don’t expect you to know that it’s my birthday. But if you do, I think it’s very smart to use that information to market to me.
You see, I’m a sucker for email lists because I crave deals. In fact, I have an email account dedicated to what most people consider “junk mail” because I hate going anywhere or shopping for anything without using a coupon. And I love it when a store or restaurant I visit often knows what I like and buy, and lets me know when it’s on sale.
But even if you are like many who don’t appreciate the constant email blasts, I think you would agree that there are some occasions where you’d make an exception – like your birthday!
So, I’d like to send out some kudos to Red Robin, Old Navy, Uno Chicago Grill, T.G.I. Friday’s, Panera Bread, Redbox, Cirque du Soleil…and I’m sure there’s more I’m forgetting…for sending me emails today and over the course of the past couple of weeks to wish me a happy birthday and offer me everything from a free dessert and a free movie to $15 off my next purchase. I appreciate your intelligent, relevant 1:1 marketing, and you can bet that I’ll probably be taking advantage of your offer and coming back in the future!
The results of a recent study conducted by Harris Interactive for Xerox Corporation confirm what we’ve been saying for years—people are more likely to respond to information and offers that are relevant to them and their specific interests, and are communicated through the channels they are comfortable with. This is especially important for marketers to consider carefully during the holiday season, when advertising soars and shopping activity peaks.
It all comes down to this…
Prior to the advent of broadcast media channels, such as radio, television, newspapers, etc., intimate relationships between business owners and their customers were practiced and managed very successfully for generations. Somehow that intimacy was lost along the way. It’s not that business leaders forgot about the value of individual relationships. It’s the fact that they saw no practical way to scale this business wisdom and apply it to the masses—efficiently—through the media channels that were available at the time.
But now, in addition to broadcast media channels, technology exists (i.e. digital printing, email, Internet, mobile, social media, variable data and cross-media software, data mining, analytics, etc.) that enables us to have customer relationships like people used to have with their corner grocers, and people are starting to expect this one-to-one communication more and more.
Take Target for example. The retail chain built individual shopper profiles from data gathered from credit card purchases, and Web and email interactions of 2 million customers. Then they designed and distributed personalized self-mailers featuring products and coupons based on each recipient’s previous purchases. The results: double-digit response rates, a 50 percent lift over previous static direct-mail pieces, and a 30 percent savings in operations costs.
So, don’t get lost among the flurry of sales promotions about to hit every consumer this holiday season. Avoid a one-size-fits-all approach, and give your customers the individual attention they want (and deserve). Here are some tips to keep in mind when developing that next 1:1 cross-media campaign.
By Bruce Meberg, senior vice president of Business Development, USADATA, Inc.
In order to reach the right audience for direct marketing acquisition campaigns, companies need to know as much as possible about their customers. Appending additional fields of information to each customer record is a great first step. There are several great business elements (e.g., industry, company size) and hundreds of potential consumer elements available (e.g., age, income, gender, marital status, home owner, life stage cluster, interests, etc.). A life stage cluster is a group of households with similar demographic characteristics and propensity to buy certain products and services.
One approach to gaining insight into customers that provides much of the benefit of high-end custom models, but at a fraction of the time and cost, is to append life stage clusters to each record, then analyze which clusters are appearing in the customer file more than would be expected (based on the cluster’s average share within the target geography). The highest 10-20% (7 to 15) of “indexing” clusters from the profile analysis can then be used to select prospect lists for acquisition campaigns. Life stage clusters offer a simple (single dimension of 60 or 70 different segments) yet powerful method, since they are based on a pre-defined model that was created using advanced statistical methods.
Life-stage clusters, such as Personicx, also come with rich background information on each cluster, so it is possible to create a modified message or variable data images for each cluster. Analyzing campaign response is also simplified…just look for the clusters with the highest response rate and use this information to fine tune the next campaign. All in all, a great way to get started on the path to higher response rates and marketing return on investment!
USADATA is a cloud-based/Data-as-a-Service (DaaS) company that combines consulting, data and technology to help its customers improve direct marketing ROI. The company’s data neutral experts have access to all leading compiled databases and specialty lists, and help businesses find new customers more easily and cost effectively through a combination of data (mailing lists and sales leads), consultative support, and easy-to-use technology.
This was a short recap of a recent XMPie Customer 1to1 Webinar series session. For more information on this topic and to learn about special XMPie customer promotions, visit www.usadata.com/xmpie.
It’s official. The latest version of XMPie’s Web-to-print, marketing portal solution, uStore® 4.0, is now available, and last week, I got a sneak peak! It’s new look and ease-of-use features make it even more practical and manageable for service providers, creative agencies and enterprise firms to build e-commerce-enabled stores and marketing portals.
In fact, uStore 4.0 has several new Web portal capabilities to help users expand their operations into the business-to-consumer (B-to-C) space. With anonymous shopping for instance, store visitors can browse offerings and add items to shopping carts without being registered. And, store products and categories can now be tagged with searchable terms to maximize visibility to search engines, driving potential customers to a store.
I asked Ray Aspeitia, digital media program manager for Sells Printing in New Berlin Wis., and uStore 4.0 beta customer, what he thought of the newest version. He said, “uStore 4.0 is definitely a must-have upgrade. The new features are helping us drive more print and marketing business by allowing us to expand and target new markets, and present even more out-of-the-box options to our customers. It’s a complete and powerful solution.”
The newest uStore version also features enhanced user and group management, as well as permission management capabilities, which give store administrators a simple way to organize storefront customers and back office administrators with defined access, roles and permissions. In addition, uStore 4.0 includes a new image customization tool that allows image crop and automatic color correction, and the Ogone payment option, which provides another payment gateway.
So, if you’re looking to provide your customers with an interactive experience in which they can easily browse, select, customize and order dynamic documents, driving both print and electronic media, uStore 4.0 is your single turnkey solution. And if you’re already a user, we hope this newest version offers you the new features you’ve been looking for.