A Tale of Two Printers’ Pricing

Price circle
The Pricing Strategy Assessment℠

Lowest Price Branding: We’ll Make It Up with Volume!

The Wall Street Journal’s October 7, 2010 “Business Section” reported, “The only thing missing from the U.S. economy today is demand, and the answer is for the government to supply it.” Regardless of your political persuasion, these stressful economic times place enormous pressure on printers, packagers and communicators to adopt strategies that will build back their sales.

Pricing strategies can have a dynamic impact on profits, so they should be considered as carefully as all other branding and marketing strategies. After all, over time a 10% reduction in profits can significantly impact what brand marketing your company can and cannot afford to invest in.

Price branding has a place in a branding program.

Let’s look at two different printers that used two very different price strategies.

Printer #1: This printing company decides to feature one of its pressroom capabilities. A branding campaign is prepared to run as a special 90-day promotion that offers reduced pricing to customers who send projects that fit its equipment parameters. The company promises at the end of the promotion to promote heavily the best print samples using direct mailings and a special Website that highlights the creative printing that was produced.

Printer #2: The other printing company decided to build new sales in the next 90 days using outbound telephone calls by its sales representatives and allowing them to lower pricing, when necessary, to win new business. This decision was based on motivating the sales representatives to make more calls to everyone they knew and to be aggressive in getting new orders. New orders were brought in, including some from existing customers that were glad to get a better than average price for their everyday printing, but then the push ended and so did further orders. This left the firm in the same place it was in when it started.

Tom Marin is the president of MarketCues, a national consulting firm. Tom serves as a senior advisor and change-management consultant with 35 years of experience. He has worked for some of the world’s largest corporations, as well as middle-market firms. Tom's focus is to plan and drive strategy shifts and strategic growth programs in the printing industry and a diverse range of market areas.
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