Data Management — Takin’ Care of Info
NAME, STREET address, city, state and ZIP code. OK, so you know where the end user lives; heck, the direct mail piece may actually end up in his/her hands. But while the piece may have made its destination, did the print buyer truly deliver with its message? And did you, the printer, help ensure that this message went to a recipient that gives a hoot about your client’s product or service?
Frankly, if your message whiffs on the intended audience count, it doesn’t matter if the mailed piece even knows how to ring the recipient’s doorbell.
“No matter how good the direct mail piece or how well we use variable data, it still fails if we’re mailing it to people who have no interest in the product or service,” notes Al Kennickell, president of Kennickell Print and Global Marketing of Savannah, GA.
“In the old days, we were asked to print a product and deliver it. We didn’t really think about how well that product or brochure did. Frankly, we didn’t care too much because we weren’t in the mix.Now, we have a vested interest in making sure that when campaigns go out in the mail, they get better than a 2 percent response rate. As a result, we’re trying to learn as much as we can about databases and data management because our success is dependent upon the results we generate for clients.”
In truth, Kennickell says, his company has become a marketing services company. Management of one-to-one marketing campaigns and the beauty of personalized digital printing are all part of a day’s work for the modern print provider.
It’s all about managing data, though we’re loathe to call it database management. It’s really the information that is being coddled and manipulated; frankly printers are really only borrowing the data from their print buying customers in order to process and deliver the marketing campaign.