PIA/GATF Converge Conference — Sell VDP to Decision Makers
LET ME be blunt: The people who buy variable data printing (VDP) are not buying printing. If you try to sell them printing, you will fail. You’ll fail because you have not articulated the productivity and capability of VDP in meeting business objectives in the 21st Century marketplace.
The choice to buy variable data printing is a business decision made by individuals whose jobs entail making critical decisions for their companies. This precludes print buyers, production coordinators, traffic managers, etc. Instead, it includes directors and VPs of marketing, brand and division managers, senior VPs, and even CEOs, CFOs and presidents. If you do not speak the language of business, you will fail. You’ll fail because you demonstrated that you do not understand business issues regarding marketing ROI, cost of customer acquisition/retention, cross-/up-selling, market share and sales volume, to name a few.
I can assure you that these executives don’t stay awake at night bemoaning that the grain ran the wrong way on the last print job or that the dot gain was a little heavy. They stay up at night troubled that they are spending too much money on marketing with too little return, or that they have too much customer churn, or that sales are falling. The number one job when selling variable data printing is to convince executives that the technology and tactics of VDP are more productive in addressing these issues. Getting to these executives, however, is no easy task and half-hearted attempts will not succeed.
There should be two essential elements to your sales strategy. First, be prepared to sell a business solution. VDP technology, while making the business solution possible, is not important. If they indicate a real curiosity about it, by all means explain the technology, but if not, stay solution-focused.