Web-to-Print Portals Lead to Profits, Efficiencies
According to Remington, DME has branded portals specific to personal events—birthdays, bar mitzvahs, communions, religious holidays—for the consumer. "We figured we could go after some of the SEO-specific terms to get a test market for Web-to-print," Remington remarks.
DME began doing business collateral as a B2B solution courtesy of its partnership with Office Depot, which was trying to complete a business portal for one of its customers, a multi-level communications company. The objective: create a secure portal to allow the sales reps to access their collateral (business cards, sell sheets) and have it printed at an Office Depot store or through its print network.
"We're supporting it as a service and transaction-based system, which gave us the idea of the Connect platform," Remington notes. "We can go software as a service (SaaS) or platform as a service to do Web-to-print, for our and other companies' needs, and build a network around that."
DME has about 30 W2P sites rolled out, 12 of which are geared toward retail. Five B2B sites have been rolled out on the new platform, with three in the implementation stage and seven on its legacy platform that will be moving over. Remington believes the commodity print and the variable data products helped lay the foundation for the offering, and he sees the next evolution in the platform being marketing-to-print—marketing-based retention programs or "drip" marketing programs.
In that scenario, users rely on the interface to manage a customer campaign through various marketing tools (e-mail, PURLs, direct mail) and set preferences on how and when the marketing recipient is engaged. A product such as XMPie's Circle campaign workflow speaks to the need, according to Remington.
"They're in that same mindset, the desire for the marketing world to automate all of the other things that we're doing, not just printed material," he says. "It's about effectively engaging your marketing campaigns and having systems that you can incorporate into making it easier." PI