2005 Direct Mail Market Outlook — Mailers Bullish on ’05

“However, the financial services industry continued to be a very strong market segment for us, along with the telecommunications industry,” Gargano reveals.

Banta Corp., Menasha, WI, saw increased spending in all four consumer-based segments in which it performs: retail, consumer packaged goods, financial services and agency work. Results from Banta’s direct marketing group “significantly outpaced” the general market growth experienced in late 2003 through 2004, according to Jim Cyze, group president.

“In retail, business improved because large retailers implemented direct marketing campaigns to differentiate themselves and to create brand recognition among consumers,” Cyze says. “And financial services companies saw opportunities based on the economy to promote their refinancing and home equity programs.”

For RR Donnelley, the 2004 campaign has been a successful one marked by an increase in volume, as well as a rise in the number of client mailing tests—be it new creative or experimenting with more personalization and variable copy as opposed to using plate changes.

According to Gordon Grote, president of Moore Wallace Response Marketing Services, creative testing is a plus for Donnelley, which expanded its production platforms to incorporate commercial in-line finishing and multi-web in-line collated products.

“We have been able to respond to inquiries for the use of more varied paper substrates, more color and all of the origami associated with in-line finishing,” Grote says. “We have also unleashed our own creative teams on these new platforms and they have been able to place more format options in front of the direct mail user.”

The benefit of variable imaging, Grote notes, is that it allows the mailer to change terms, legal copy and offer features such as price based on code-driven tables. In turn, Donnelley can mail more customized copy and preserve the mail sort, which yields a lower postal bill and reduces cycle times. This route has been taken by Donnelley’s financial, insurance and traffic-building clients.

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