Increase Direct Mail’s Effectiveness using Variable Data Printing

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target.aspxRecently a representative from Domtar Paper visited us at Lawton Printing Services.  The “state of the industry” conversation was exciting and highlighted some great things happening in the paper, print and marketing world.

The meeting was print and paper focused, which we enjoyed because we love the world of printed materials.  (We geek out at the beautiful smell of ink in our building!  If you haven’t visited us in a while, come by and take a deep breath!)  But the overall takeaway is print marketing has continued to grow and evolve alongside digital technology.

Lawton Printing Services has worked with our customers for years integrating print pieces into overall marketing campaigns.  Marketing campaigns that integrate print and digital marketing lift your campaign, making it 2-10 times more effective.  Over the next several months, we will continue to discuss ways to use your customer data, integrate your print materials with the other media in your campaign and measure the results of your efforts.

This post focuses on Variable Data Printing (VDP) which is simply using data you have about your customers or prospects to personalize your marketing materials in a one-to-one way rather than “mass” marketing.

Personalization of printed materials increases readership and response rates.  There are several ways you can easily incorporate your customer data on the next direct mail piece your print.

  • Basic Customization is simply including the recipients name and address on the salutation.  People are more likely to respond if you address them by name.
  • Versioning consists of using different layouts based on a pre-determined set of criteria.  You can break down your customer data geographically or by any other variable that allows you to segment your customer list.
  • Full Customization incorporates individual components throughout the entire printed piece. Images, text and personalization focused on your knowledge of the recipient maximize the relevancy for the reader making them more engaged with your brand.  This technique will increase your response rates.

The key to any VDP program is gathering and maintaining good data about your customers or prospects. Check back for subsequent blogs where we will continue to discuss ways to manage and expand your customer data,  and incorporate  tools in your campaign that allow you to measure the results.

Read more about how the Vanessa Behan Crisis Nursery has incorporated VDP into their Annual Appeal.

Read more about the effectiveness of VDP and printed materials.

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