IL-Based Bloomington Offset Process (bopi) Does Much More Than Produce Pocket Folders
"If you're going to maximize a piece of equipment like that, you have to be able to handle data," Fritzen maintains. "As much as we use data today, it's amazing just how unsophisticated the collection of customer data can be. We employ people on our staff to manage, manipulate and cleanse their data, to help our clients overcome the problems that their own data actually presents."
To help sell the concept of variable data printing and cross-media marketing, bopi showed customers that it wasn't afraid to drink its own Kool-Aid.
"Along the way, we decided to promote it ourselves by using it ourselves. We did a PURL-driven campaign, 'Pie to Dough,' with a dimensional delivery at the end where we actually delivered a fresh pie to customers," Fritzen continues.
"What it did was enable our sales staff to introduce the concepts to their customers. Traditional commercial printing salespeople weren't ready from day one to sell variable data, direct mail or marketing-oriented products and services. It allowed our customers—and even our own salespeople—to see us in a different light."
Tom Mercier adds that the Pie to Dough campaign was an effective tool in proving to customers that bopi can be not only an effective printer, but an executer of cross-media marketing campaigns. While bopi has had some level of involvement in the creative end during its five years of cultivating campaigns, he underscores the importance of including one's print provider in the marketing mix early on.
"We want to help steer customers in the right direction, to make sure they stay out of trouble with what can and can't be accomplished," he remarks. "They need to make sure the personalized URL address stands out, for example…little things that people who are starting out might not realize."
While not overly active in the M&A theater, bopi did tuck in a competitor in 2010. Tom Mercier notes that he's always on the lookout for a potential fit that would mesh with the company's product and service menu, but also widen its scope on a geographic basis. The exec currently sees a wealth of opportunities within the Chicago/Indianapolis/St. Louis cluster.