Direct Mail Outlook : Mail Continues to Deliver
"The positive impact of this technology on customers' response rates was evident with multiple instances of double- and triple-digit lift in response rates for acquisition campaigns," Andersen says. "Other contributing factors to our growth include the expansion of our services for creative, strategy and analytics, and our advancement into a new vertical market."
Among the key additions made by IWCO Direct: two Océ ColorStream 3900 inkjet presses from Canon Solutions America aimed at bolstering personalization capabilities. The presses utilize Océ's premium pigment ink solution. Earlier in the spring, IWCO Direct's Mail-Gard division, which provides business continuity and disaster recovery services, installed an Océ JetStream 2200 inkjet press at its Warminster, PA, facility.
Mail Volume Pressures
In terms of the challenges presented by the USPS and its request for an exigent rate increase, Andersen notes that clients, already under the gun to do more with less, would have to reconcile an above-inflation increase with other costs in their direct market spend. As a result, he says mail service providers would be under the gun to reap more efficiencies and/or mail volume could face a reduction.
"If the issue the USPS is trying to address with the exigent rate increase is reduced revenue due to declining mail volume, they are taking the wrong approach," he says. "Mail is just one of a number of channels our clients can use to communicate their marketing messages. We know mail works, but it needs to remain cost-effective. Raising prices is not the way to drive higher mail volume."
Andersen points out that marketers have shown a strong interest in four-color variable data digital printing for high-volume mail based on IWCO Direct's ability to deliver a highly customized package that offers enhanced targeting capabilities, resulting in higher ROI. Such programs include elements of strategy, creative, data/programming, production and mail planning with shorter production cycles to create the most relevant campaigns possible. IWCO Direct is also integrating analytics and strategy into its direct mail solutions to increase effectiveness and response rates. PI