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The Datamax Thinking Blog

Educating, collaborating, and sparking ideas for maximizing the technology that matters.


Finding Your Audience of One: Personalization With Variable Data Printing

Using variable data printing to personalize your marketing and increase sales.

Also known as one-to-one marketing, VDP allows you to use rules and pieces of content in a database to create marketing individualized to a group of customers down to a single customer.

“Hey. You there, here's a product you might be interested in. Maybe.”

That's not really a line that's going to inspire anyone to buy from you, much less customer loyalty. Yet that's what a lot marketing looks like – dull, uninspired, careless, and often so broad that no one knows it's for them.

Who wants to be on the receiving end of that? As a business, is that the kind of marketing you want to be sending to your customers and prospects?

I know that I like personal service. Let's use Starbucks as an example. There are many stories of regular customers walking in the door and are noticed by the barrista. When and then their regular order is waiting for them by the time they get to the register. That's personal.

If your marketing materials are broadcasting to everyone, variable data printing can help you begin to market to an audience of one.

Personalization Equals Sales

Before talking about VDP and personalized output, let me share with you why this matters. I think a few stats will suffice:

  • In-house marketers who are personalizing their Web experiences and who are able to quantify the improvement see, on average, a 19% uplift in sales.” Monetate/eConsultancy
  • 86% (of respondents) said that personalization has at least some impact on what they purchase, and 25% say personalization significantly influences what they purchase. Infosys

Now you're interested, right?

Variable Data Printing and Personalization

Personalized emails, subject lines and greetings, are simple (and important) to do. However, you can do that with a simple mail merge in Outlook. We're talking about deeper personalization enabled by variable data printing (VDP). Also known as one-to-one marketing, VDP allows you to use rules and pieces of content in a database to create marketing individualized to a group of customers down to a single customer.

Here are a few ways to use VDP:

  • Business correspondence – include a name, address, and basic product information in a mailer or email.
  • Basic one-to-one marketing – using simple rules, include variable images and text to create a unique document for each recipient.
  • Multi-channel marketing – unique text, images, and graphics are combined for each recipient based on rules that can include demographics, past buying decisions, history with the company, etc. to create a unique offer for an individual. These offers can be printed, presented on the Web, or sent via email.
  • Transpromo – this turns your billing and other transactional documents into a marketing tool. Using geography, purchase decisions, etc.; you can target specific offers to groups and individuals. For instance, an invitation to specific zip codes for a local lunch and learn event. 

Variable data printing, combined with production printers and a great marketing strategy can lead to robust sales growth for your company.

Ready to Learn More?

Join us on Thursday, October 20th. We'll be hosting a lunch (BBQ from Whole Hog Cafe) and learn (Bill Hoffman, Production Print Solutions Engineer for Konica Minolta) at our offices on 7400 Kanis Road in Little Rock.

Topics: Printing Technology Solutions Production Print