Boost Effectiveness. Save Money.

Did you know that you can save money on your print marketing and increase your marketing effectiveness at the same time? You might equate saving money with choosing less expensive paper or printing less, but it’s really about targeting and optimization.

1. Cleanse your database.

What percentage of your mailing list actually gets delivered? Do you know? According to the United States Postal Service, 30% of bulk mail never gets to its destination because the addresses are undeliverable.

One way to save money is to keep your mailing list up to date on a regular basis. Run your list through the United States Postal Service CASS certification to verify that addresses in your list are deliverable. Run it through NCOA (National Change of Address) every six months.

There is no sense spending money to print and mail documents that have no chance of getting where you want them to go. When more of your mail gets to its destination, your response rates go up!

2. Divide into target markets.

Segmenting your database and targeting your message to different demographic groups within your target audience decreases your print runs while increasing your response rates. By dividing your audience into groups, you can speak to each one more specifically. You might tailor your message by gender. You might offer different products to homes falling into different levels of household income. You might send different offers and incentives to current versus inactive customers.

Even if you don’t have demographics available in your database, we can help. Demographic information can be purchased very cost-effectively. Talk to us about adding variables that help increase the relevance of your marketing message.

3. Print on demand.

If you’re still in the habit of printing “in bulk” to save money, it might be time to think JIT and POD. Today’s offset and digital technologies allow you to print on demand (POD) or just in time (JIT) so that you are placing much smaller orders more in line with your actual needs. As you do, your marketing power goes up because you can keep your materials up to date without having to use up old inventory first.

In a recent article, Target Marketing suggested evaluating the cost-effectiveness of POD models in the following categories:

  • Generic documents with annual usage of less than 5,000 pieces
  • More complex documents with annual usage of less than 1,000 pieces
  • New pieces for which no shelf life or usage history has been established
  • Items that change frequently
  • Materials about to enter back-order status.

These are simple steps, but they can have profound results. Even if you are in the rare minority of those not looking to save money on print marketing, keeping your database up to date, segmenting and targeting your marketing messages, and moving to a real-time inventory and print management model should be part of the best practices of every company’s marketing program