After being in this industry for…(too many years), it’s hard not to miss all the changes. In my opinion, it’s what makes this industry exciting! In the last few years we have seen more drastic change than ever. With economic distress, who isn’t looking to be more efficient? Companies want to maximize dollars by utilizing every inch of their document to the fullest. The ability to place marketing messages on a transactional document opened doors for many mailers and now we can have it in color? And it can be variable?
Some Important things to consider when switching to High Speed Digital Inkjet Color;
- Return on Investment
More often than not we ask "How much does this cost?" but when we ask ourselves "How much can this assist me and in what ways?" the purchasing process in our minds completely changes and we begin to get excited about the product. The reason for the investment in a product is the benefit it offers. With new technology in high speed digital inkjet printing we can achieve the desired return on investment without the sacrifice in quality at reasonable costs in a high volume environment with speed.
- Reach Smaller Target Markets
Certainly there has been times when a specific market you would like to target was considered too costly to mail. Maybe you had to create a separate mail campaign because it was going to have to be produced on color cut sheet equipment at a premium instead of a conventional package? As long as the fold, inserts and outside envelopes are the same and we are more creative in the way we design packages, utilizing the OE windows and other manufacturing techniques with this inkjet color technology we can overcome those obstacles.
- Combine Specific Market for Postage Savings
Consolidate the mail campaigns that run thirty plus forms and multiple letter versions for each form. With increased costs in postage, who wouldn't want to take the time to talk postage strategy using the high speed digital inkjet color equipment and commingle upstream in the data!
- One to One Highly Personalized Marketing Material
Studies have shown that personalized marketing materials have better response rates as well as adding color to the piece. Just like directors use technology in movies, art directors have to use technology in printing to keep the audience coming back for more. When you combine personalization and color to a direct marketing piece, it is like watching a 3D movie where elements just pop out at your audience. It might be a picture of your client's car showing through a window of an envelope that encourages them to open that extended service contract offer that otherwise may have been thrown in the trash. Maybe it’s their name on a birthday cake, in the sand on the beach or on a street sign that catches their eye. It could even be age, gender or a life event related photo that make the connection. We need to continue to be creative in order to make that initial impression and keep the audience interested. This high speed digital inkjet color technology allows us to do so.
- Unique Package Designs
In thinking of building a direct mail package we typically start with an 11", a 14" or a 17" sheet of paper. Why? Because the conventional offset cylinders and cut sheet standards lead us down this path. Have you ever compressed text or added another sheet to the mail campaign because it just wouldn't fit? How about increasing the point size or leading so the design did not appear like it was missing something. Wouldn't it be nice if form length was more flexible? With high speed digital inkjet color technology the form length can be from 6" to 54". This is also important because the finishing technology is more flexible and can add even more creativity to package design.
- Better Inventory Control
Warehousing forms today can be costly. It is tied up money and space and all too often some of them end up being disposed of for one reason or another. It is not feasible to say that inventory can be eliminated because you still need to inventory the paper, but it is less complex to use remaining white paper then preprinted forms. However, Digital inkjet papers are a little different than conventional paper and prices range from the normal offset price to more than double the offset sheet. The reason is for the treatment or coating of the paper. In addition, these papers usually require more lead time to manufacture. Keep this in mind as you think of going digital.
New generation Digital Color offers greater efficiency, more options, higher quality and we can take a white roll of paper and be completely variable with it..how cool is that?