IMAGINE CONTROLLING your customers’ information, including how it is updated, managed, printed and distributed. Printers that provide database management services don’t have to dream about such a scenario.

“We’ve offered database management services since the 1960s,” confirms Ty Vincent, president and CEO of Vincent Direct in Columbus, OH. “At that time, we typed a series of file cards for our clients and managed their information manually. The technology has evolved over the years and we now offer very sophisticated database management and in-house programming.”

Although Vincent Direct has been offering these services for a long time, one could argue there has been no more important time to provide database management services than in today’s market.

“We are no longer just a printer,” Vincent advises. “We’ve become a direct marketing solutions provider. We operate as an extension to our clients’ marketing departments, even providing creative design and writing. We manage the entire direct marketing communications process from concept to delivery.”

Key to Communication

Jim Neumann, vice president, marketing solutions group for Transcontinental Direct’s U.S. operations, feels that data is the foundation of one-to-one communications. Therefore, having sophisticated capabilities in database and digital asset management allows Transcontinental to offer its clients more expansive services as a marketing services provider. The company can provide more strategic value and capabilities around targeting and messaging in addition to printing, he contends.

“It becomes a clear differentiator for Transcontinental versus other printers when we can combine sophisticated database and analytic capabilities with the printing expertise we have to move beyond an operational relationship to one where we are working with our clients as a partner in their marketing and communications strategy,” Neumann explains.

Transcontinental’s database management services have roots back to 1985 when Marketing Communication Systems (MCS) was formed as part of the company that eventually became CC3 (which was acquired by Transcontinental in 2003). Originally more of a data processing operation, the database management services have expanded over the years and it now builds and hosts marketing databases, providing campaign planning and execution.

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