Digital Marketing - Data into Dollars
"Within a month or two, we were a fully functional black-and-white and color digital printing production shop," Hoefle says. The company has since upgraded to an Indigo TurboStream and added a Xerox DocuColor 70 web press for digital color production. It uses a DocuTech 6180 and a 6135 for black-and-white work. The presses are backed up by in-house finishing capabilities, to also address the aforementioned workflow control issues. Total staffing currently stands at 51 employees.
"We've been a marketing and development partner with Xerox for the last four years," Hoefle notes. "Since we've primarily focused on the DocuTech family for black-and-white production, the DocuColor 70 was the natural choice for expanding our color capabilities. The Indigo, in addition to being a cut-sheet device, provides the option of using a lot of unique stocks that are more readily available."
Over time, it became clear to the partners that its business arrangement with the Miner Group wasn't the right fit, they say. In 1999, they spun the company back out as an independent operation, with the backing of investors.
"We needed to call on marketing people, not print buyers," Nelson explains. "Printers typically have relationships with the procurement departments in large companies, and we needed to get into the marketing side of those companies."
Also, the duo learned early on that customized marketing programs demanded a higher level of selling and service than traditional direct marketing. Potential customers often are very "data apologetic," Nelson says. They confess to not having meaningful customer intelligence, or sometimes even good mailing lists.
Because of this lack of internal resources, clients pushed Digital Marketing to offer a turnkey service, Nelson adds. If a client does have internal resources or an existing relationship with another creative agency, Digital Marketing simply provides design guidelines and dovetails its services accordingly.