Filed under: Cross Media, E-mail, Marketing, One-to-one, VDP, Web-to-Print
By Christine Winter, PR/Marketing programs manager, XMPie, A Xerox Company
It’s no secret that 1:1 marketing campaigns that incorporate many different media channels have a greater reach, response and ROI. But did you know that they also have many ‘green’ benefits? Think about it…
Print is typically the first medium that comes to mind for a direct marketing campaign, and many people still prefer to receive important information in the mail. Although it seems print can’t possibly be ‘green,’ there are ways to make it more environmentally responsible (i.e. recycled paper, solid ink, duplex printing, etc.). Plus, with strategic and effective personalized print that is targeted to the right recipient with valuable, relevant information, your direct mail is less likely to hit the trash can (or better yet, the recycle bin). Read more on the “to print or not to print” debate here.
Then there’s e-media, such as email, the Web and mobile messaging, which has become more and more popular because of its convenience and cost-effectiveness. Its environmentally-friendly benefits are obvious, and when used strategically with text or image personalization, it increases the overall effectiveness of a marketing campaign. For best results, you can use e-media for the initial phase of a campaign and then follow up with print to non-responders, or vice versa.
Another great way to reduce costs and waste is with a Web-to-print solution. Take, for example, Digital Color Imaging (DCI), an Ohio-based print and Web marketing communications company that prides itself on helping clients minimize their environmental footprint. Its long-standing client Norandex Reynolds Building Products, a division of building material leader Saint-Gobain, typically sends out monthly mailers containing multiple ads, as well as announcements about discount specials, events, and featured products. The mailers are also used to announce workshops, inviting local contractors to attend and learn how to install their products.
These mailers were traditionally printed and shipped to each of its 200 dealer locations across the country where they were stored until needed. At that point, seminar-specific information would be printed on the sheets and then mailed to each recipient. Norandex sought an easier and less wasteful way of recruiting attendees, so DCI implemented a marketing portal for the company using XMPie® uStore®. This enabled Norandex branch managers to upload customer mailing lists, customize seminar mailers, and print and mail exactly the number of materials they needed on demand. Not only did this help eliminate any unnecessary printing, significantly cutting down printing expenses and reducing shipping and storage resources and costs, but it also made the marketing materials even more targeted and relevant, increasing branch participation in these local seminars from 15 to 100 percent.
What are some ways your business is reducing its environmental impact? Are there other ways to minimize the impact of marketing communications on the environment?
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.