Marketing Service Providers : How Can We Help You?
Late last year, CCI/CoakleyTech of Hartland, WI, opened a full-service marketing and communications division called CCI Communications Group. According to Chris Illman, president and CEO of CCI/CoakleyTech, the move came in response to clients wanting the printer to integrate more marketing services into the firm’s core offering. CCI Communications Group was developed as an “and” strategy instead of an “or” proposition; CCI/CoakleyTech will continue dishing out its transactional and data-driven printing.
CCI/CoakleyTech hired Tim Kubina, former owner of Avicom Marketing and Communications, to lead this offering and quickly stocked the division with a dozen or so experienced employees. Illman is having the new division focus on campaign management and measurement, and Web portals. “Basically, it’s how we support companies that have complex sales chains: sell through dealers, distributors, agents and franchises,” Illman explains.
“Those marketing people need a lot of help and support in campaign effectiveness and marketing portals. These portals—literature distribution, personalized print-on-demand, marketing campaigns, direct mail campaigns, digital asset management—help them disseminate their information to their stakeholders.”
CCI Communications Group provides project management, consulting and creative services aimed at areas such as printing and digital advertising, video, event management, online marketing, promotional merchandise, media relations, social media and direct marketing. Though the sample size is small, Illman has received much positive feedback from the new initiatives.
Illman believes there are marketing opportunities for most printers, pointing out that many clients in the past four to five years have cut back drastically in their marketing departments, and they're now searching for single-source providers as opposed to restaffing. Still, he cautions that a half-hearted commitment to MSP may cause your efforts to backfire.
For First Edge Solutions, based in Milwaukee, the transition into a MSP wasn't a big leap of faith; then again, it wasn't a transition, either. Bobby Kraft, president and CEO, didn't paint himself into a corner when he opened shop in 2003, preferring to view the data stream as his point of attack—some items need printing, some need to be mailed and now others need some sort of online massaging.