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Founder, Print Buyers International (PBI)

Margie's Buyer Insights

By Margie Dana

About Margie

Margie Dana, a former print buyer, is the founder of Print Buyers International (PBI) and its member-based organization, Boston Print Buyers. These professional organizations cater to print customers worldwide through education, an annual buyers conference, Print Buyer Boot Camps, and networking opportunities.

Margie's perhaps best known for her weekly enewsletter, Margie's Print Tips, which she's published weekly since 1999 in an effort to build bridges in the industry. For years, Margie has been a popular speaker at industry events here and abroad. Her clients include print company executives who rely on her to help steer their marketing campaigns and make their online efforts more customer friendly.


Printers - Help Keep Your Customers Employed

It is in your best interest as a printer to make sure your customers are secure in their jobs. They are responsible for giving your firm business. They are your biggest advocates inside their companies—often, they’re your only advocate.

Doesn’t it make sense that you’d want them to stay put and build on the relationship with you?

What are you doing to ensure that happens? Let me throw a few ideas your way...
  • Do you know what capabilities they are looking for in their service providers?
  • Do you know what challenges they’re facing in their careers/companies?
  • When was the last time you had a conversation with customers that didn't involve either a job in production or one (hopefully) coming down the pike?

How has your relationship grown and developed (presuming it has)? Has this customer learned to trust you and your firm more as time has passed, resulting in new kinds of applications or new services?

I ask because an increase in volume, as well as new services, indicates that you’re a key provider for that customer. It symbolizes trust. It points to a deepening relationship. What led to this growth, and can you duplicate those steps to develop other customer relationships?

Are you familiar enough with top customers’ industries to be able to make strategic suggestions to them about their marketing materials, such as new applications that would one-up their competition?

I wonder how many printers think this way about customer retention. How many printers take an active role in helping clients succeed in their job? If you fit that description, I’d like to hear from you. Or if you’re a print buyer reading this post, I want to hear about printers who have in some way helped secure your job.

Share your thoughts by posting a Comment below.

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