PSDA Sales Through Marketing Webinar Series
Starting this month, and running through the end of this year, PSDA and Alex L. Goldfayn, CEO of Evangelist Marketing Institute, will present six live, interactive webinars focused on increasing your sales through powerful marketing. There will be no cost to PSDA members and a small fee for nonmembers. Each webinar will feature rich learning material, plus interaction, questions and periodic role plays between you, your peers and colleagues, and Goldfayn.
The series is titled the PSDA REVENUE Webinar Series because its entire purpose for existence is to grow your business.
The following sessions will run between now and the end of the year:
The first session, called The Growth Mindset, is slated for Wednesday, April 24, at noon EST. Register now.
- The Growth Mindset
- The Power of Customer Insights
- How to Add New Customers Through Powerful Marketing
- Increasing Revenue with Existing Customers
- Executive Selling, Peer-to-Peer
- Creating and Nurturing Customer Evangelists
Watch PSDA’s Membership Videos
Have you seen PSDA's latest membership videos? Check out “Return on Membership” and “An Unrivaled Network” at PSDA's YouTube Channel. Both videos detail the value of the association as told by actual members. We encourage you to share these videos with prospective members.
Return on Membership
An Unrivaled Network
Have You Registered for the Small Distributor Summit?
PSDA has a vibrant community of small distributors (traditionally defined as annual sales of less than $2.5 million). Those distributors have access to a tailored experience — the Small Distributor Summit (SDS) — which will take place May 9-10 in Chicago in conjunction with, and immediately following, PSDA's Distributor Solutions Expo as an “event within an event.”
Thursday, May 9: Distributor Solutions Expo access, a small distributor-only afternoon session at Navy Pier and dinner
Friday, May 10: Full-day facilitated networking program at PSDA Headquarters in downtown Chicago
Past attendees agree this is the most valuable event they participate in and come back year after year for the peer-to-peer networking, education and motivation it provides.
Registration for SDS is handled through the registration process for the Distributor Solutions Expo. Simply go to the registration link, select either the two-day All Access Full Conference Pass (Wednesday/Thursday) or the Expo Only Pass (Thursday), then add SDS on as an "add on" during registration.
Discount Labels Adds Expanded Capabilities for Printing Durable Labels
Just in time for spring showers and the extreme heat of summer, PSDA member Discount Labels has added even more capability to print heavy-duty durable labels that can withstand the harshest conditions Mother Nature and rough handling have to offer.
“We have responded to our distributors who need even more label durability by adding state-of-the art equipment, longer-wear label stocks and new minimums,” said Jennifer LaGrange, brand manager for Discount Labels. “We anticipated almost every heavy-duty label application under the sun that our distributors might have to solve for — and we’re giving them a superior solution.” Perfect uses for durable labels include outdoor heating and air conditioning units, construction machinery, medical equipment, security equipment, industrial tanks, trucks, cars, RVs and much more.
In addition to expanded capabilities for weatherproof labels, reflective labels and bumper stickers, Discount Labels has added new stocks to its industry-leading line of extended life durable decals and reduced the minimum order quantity to 50 labels. These new longer-lasting materials withstand harsh conditions, chemical solvents and repeat handling, and last up to four years. In addition, the durable label line is available with consecutive numbering and variable data imprints for numerous other applications such as inventorying goods, security tags and vehicle permits.
The Flesh Company Hires New HR Manager
PSDA member The Flesh Company recently hired Jeana Murphy as human resources manager at its Parsons, Kan., facility. Murphy joins the company with more than 20 years of HR experience. “Jeana is the 13th new hire we've added since Jan. 1, 2013, and we're thrilled to have someone with her extensive HR background on our team,” said Barb Eaton, HR director.
Founded in 1913, The Flesh Company is a recognized leader in continuous forms, security products, laser cut sheets and unit sets. Other core disciplines include digital and variable image printing, integrated cards/forms and labels, custom label products, full-service bindery and a variety of promotional printing applications, including 100 percent “green” printing. FSC and SFI certified.
Navitor Announces Bronze Sponsorship of AIGA Minnesota Chapter
PSDA member Navitor and AIGA Minnesota recently announced a sponsorship agreement beginning in 2013 that marks the printer's continued commitment to promoting the importance of design and expert training in the visual communications industries. The Bronze Sponsorship agreement secures Navitor's support of AIGA's premiere programs such as Design Camp.
“The print industry has undergone significant disruption and commoditization over the last decade,” said George McGowan, senior vice president of marketing and technology for Navitor. “And the design industry is experiencing similar challenges due to crowdsourcing and speculative work. As a trade-only wholesale printer, Navitor is committed to the craftsmanship and quality that only experts in design, print, marketing and communication can provide. That's why we are supporting the important work AIGA does in our home state of Minnesota to ensure a vibrant and growing creative economy.”
The AIGA sponsorship comes as Navitor is launching a unique membership program for freelance and independent graphic designers called Design Works in partnership with CoCo, the Twin Cities premiere co-working space. Together, these efforts lay the foundation for Navitor to build on-going education, development and co-creation efforts with the freelance design community in the Twin Cities and Upper Midwest.
Warwick Acquires SunGraphix’ Daily Date, Calendar Pad Collections from Geiger
Rob Paschal, CEO of Warwick Publishing, and Gene Geiger, CEO of Geiger, recently announced an agreement for PSDA member Warwick Publishing Company to acquire the SunGraphix Sullivan Daily Date calendar and 12-sheet calendar pad collections. SunGraphix, a division of Geiger, will complete production this spring of orders in house. Then, it will transfer customer data, production equipment and know-how to enable Warwick Publishing to produce and complete orders beginning in late summer.
Warwick Publishing will honor all published catalog pricing and quotes. SunGraphix will continue to support Warwick Publishing for as long as it takes to assure a smooth knowledge transfer and on-time delivery of all orders. “Sullivan Daily Dates have been the quality standard for years,” Paschal said. “They fit our production skills and complement our product line nicely.”
“We have been buying 12-sheet calendars from SunGraphix for years,” he said. “So, it was logical for us to bring the manufacturing in house. With the skills we acquire — and there is a ‘secret family recipe' to doing it right — we will be able to continue to deliver the quality we and others have come to expect.”
Royal Mail Supports PSDA Partner Two Sides’ Campaign
Royal Mail is a world leader in postal innovation and one of the United Kingdom's largest companies. The goal of the Two Sides and Print Power campaigns is to promote the responsible production and use of print and paper, and dispel common environmental misconceptions by providing users with verifiable information on why print and paper is an attractive, practical and sustainable communications medium.
Royal Mail is an essential part of the United Kingdom's economic and social infrastructure, serving companies, customers and communities six days a week; delivering 59 million items every working day to businesses and households.
David Gold, head of public affairs at Royal Mail, said: “It is important that we recognize and focus upon the importance of mail for all U.K. citizens; ensuring that companies and consumers alike not only recognize the important role mail plays in the fabric of our daily lives but also how mail can deliver corporate marketing messages that really stand out an increasingly digital and media cluttered world”
Gold continued: “The mission of Two Sides, to promote the attractiveness and sustainability of mail, is completely complementary to our own activities, and we are looking forward to working with the organization to assist the development of their campaigns and strengthen our own relationships with information that will benefit all our stakeholders.”
Read the full article here.
U.S. Postmaster General Defends Five-Day Delivery, Unveils Same Day Mail Service
PrintWeek (03/21/13) Ward, David
U.S. Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe renewed calls for the U.S. Postal Service's (USPS) termination of Saturday deliveries, among other things, at the recent National Postal Forum in San Francisco. Attendees included major print industry players such as Hewlett-Packard, Pitney Bowes, Ricoh and Quad/Graphics, there to discuss how they could enhance mail and print.
"Right here in San Francisco, the Postal Service has been conducting a pilot test of a delivery service called MetroPost," Donahoe said. "Your toaster breaks at nine in the morning. You call a department store to order a new one sent to your home that same afternoon. Who delivers it? The Postal Service! If we make the activity of ordering something really simple, and we provide a robust, low-cost delivery infrastructure, the use of delivery will grow dramatically."
Donahoe also said the USPS must stay affordable to maintain its relevance. "The faster we can reduce costs, the better we can avoid pressure to raise prices," he said. "That's why we need more flexibility in our business model." Donahoe said he is convinced that Congress, which in recent years has included a provision mandating that six-day mail delivery be sustained in the federal budget appropriations bills, would finally permit the USPS to cease Saturday deliveries come August. "Right now there's something passing through the House, but there's nothing in the Senate," he said. "The Postal Service is a strong organization, but we need to take some costs out. We lost 27 percent of our business and like any other business we need to be responsible."
3-D Printers Wave Their Magic Wands
USA Today (03/21/13) P. 1B Shinal, John
An industry based on 3-D printing continues to expand, and the technology is now viewed as a future driver of economic growth. The technology has proliferated, with leading makers of 3-D printers such as Stratasys now offering midrange desktop models priced at $30,000 to $50,000, but consumers and small businesses can find models for less than $2,500 from upstarts, such as Makerbot. The 3-D printing process saves time and money, and rapid prototyping also enables users to produce more innovative, higher-quality products. Ford Motor developed a new hybrid transmission on a 3-D printer that costs about $300,000. "The introduction of a digital manufacturing model to the general public means … the democratization of technology," said Chris Anderson, the former editor of Wired magazine and author of the book, Makers. He believes 3-D prototyping will spur a "maker revolution" that will rival the industrial and PC revolutions. Still, the technology remains a work in progress and has limits in connection with the fused deposition modeling that 3-D printers use to create products in layers.
Label and Packaging Security: Brand Protection Tools in Printing and Packaging
WhatTheyThink (03/25/13) Weymans, Flip
The spread of counterfeiting demands collaboration between brand owners and converter/printer partners to create a multilayered protection plan so that their packaging and labels shield their brands and discourage counterfeiters. Modern digital printing technologies can incorporate security and anti-counterfeiting measures into the design of the packaging and labels from the outset and significantly boost a brand owner's confidence that their products will not be stolen or their reputation tarnished, and many of these measures are embedded directly within the digital printing process.
Microtext is text or coding that is printed at about one point size, so small it is invisible without a magnifying glass. It is extremely tough to replicate or copy microtext without using advanced detection equipment, and microtext characters can be inserted into overt images, text and other design components without the consumer being aware of them. Counterfeiters lack the capability to reproduce microtext and will simply copy the visible elements. An examiner can distinguish between authentic and inauthentic products simply by using a handheld magnifying glass.
Guilloches are fine, curved bands of lines, commonly inserted in documents such as bank notes to deter forgery. They also can be employed in the background of a package design and are very difficult for counterfeiters to replicate using ordinary gear, such as a color copier. Meanwhile, variable data printing enables the introduction of elements that are unique to each piece in a single production run.
Packaging and labels that need to be highly secure must begin with a high quality substrate. Leading fine paper producers offer substrates with sophisticated security measures, such as watermarks, fluorescent fibers, microprinting fibers, reactive anti-fraud chemicals, taggants and embedded holograms.
Dry toner-based digital printing provides multiple brand protection features that converters can supply to brand owners. It allows use of currently employed security substrates, unlike other types of toners/inks. Clear toner provides transparency and ultraviolet reflection, and can be used to produce watermarks that can only be seen by a human looking at the image from a certain angle under a light source, but will not show using a copier or scanner. Digital printing technology is attractive for two-dimensional barcodes and Quick Response Codes because the printer can generate unique bar codes for each unit.
Retail Graphics: Telling a Brand Story
MyPrintResource (04/01/13) Whitcher, Joann
Building name recognition for clients is the primary job of imaging companies in the retail signage industry. Inwindow Outdoor's specialty is the creation of storefront and mall advertising. The company’s custom storescapes are set up in vacant retail spaces, about the size of billboards but meant to be viewed at eye level. “We take that vacancy ... and bring vitality and energy to the location by putting in these very large scale ads,” said CEO Steve Birnhak. “Each has its own unique design."
Building name recognition for clients is the primary job of imaging companies in the retail signage industry. Inwindow Outdoor's specialty is the creation of storefront and mall advertising. The company’s custom storescapes are set up in vacant retail spaces, about the size of billboards but meant to be viewed at eye level. “We take that vacancy … and bring vitality and energy to the location by putting in these very large-scale ads,” said CEO Steve Birnhak. “Each has its own unique design."
The ads are installed in high-traffic retail areas or in malls. “The ads are cool; they are impactful,” Birnhak said. “It’s at ground level where people are out walking about.” Inwindow Outdoor is moving beyond print, developing programs that include augmented reality, 3-D, audio, video, gesture recognition, Wi-Fi/Bluetooth, SMS and touchscreen technologies.
The company's Cubes platform consists of large, free-standing structures wrapped on all sides, designed so consumers can see the brand’s campaign from all angles. Every Cube is committed to one brand, promoting interactivity via video screens, audio, touchscreen and so on. Cubes are designed for use in high-traffic venues such as stadiums, malls and entertainment centers.
PVS In-Store Graphics makes 2-D and 3-D temporary and semi-permanent point-of-purchase solutions. “We can basically print on anything,” said project manager Kelsey Birsa. PVS produces large-format screen printing and digital output using VUTEk, Oce LightJet, Roland, Hewlett-Packard, Colorspan and Mimaki printers, as well as 3-D fabrications and structures. Birsa said a recent project for a sports apparel firm involved the creation of a “huge spinning contraption, sort of like a life-size kaleidoscope. We were trying to convey something active and youthful; all of the moving parts fit together."
PVS assisted a major client to promote the roll out of a new shoe by creating custom store graphics for 45 locations. Featured in the graphics were printed and assembled backdrops, vinyl window clings, shoe displays and printed and cut acrylics in the shape of the shoe, some of which required backlighting. PVS had to run its VUTEk GS3250LX LED printer in one- to 12-hour shifts for several days straight, printing around 180 sheets of foam board, 60 or 70 sheets of PVC board, six or seven rolls of vinyl, four rolls of clear vinyl and roughly 30 five-foot acrylic shoe displays.
Pick the Best Eco-Tricks from Other Industries
PrintWeek (03/22/13) Creasey, Simon
The retail sector has been a leader in the practice of energy efficiency and waste management, and the starting point for learning about waste management from retailers is the development of a waste management system (WMS). Thomas Bergmark at Bergmark Sustainability said a WMS would lead many printers to cut their chemical consumption through a mix of color coding and designated recycling containers in store, as well as careful scrutiny of where waste is being produced.
"The problem is that the chemical companies send their experts to the production floor to give advice," Bergmark said. "But … I would say that some of these guys are not optimizing these processes, despite the fact that it’s a huge part of the total cost of their processes, so there could be very substantial savings." Strategies printers can take to boost energy efficiency on a limited budget include using the Carbon Trust, which offers energy efficiency advice to businesses with varying budgets.
In the property industry, developers and construction companies have made significant strides during the past several years in shrinking their buildings' carbon footprint via use of energy-efficient materials and installing renewable energy sources on new-build developments. Consultant Kate Heslegrave said printers can borrow several concepts from this sector to go green, such as installing light-emitting diode lighting rented from a third party and lowering the initial financial outlay.
Fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) groups' supply-chain management strategies also can be tapped by printers. "For example, if somebody supplies a product to you that’s encased in lots of packaging, you’re going to have to throw that packaging away and pay for its disposal," Heslegrave said. "However, what some of the FMCG groups are doing — and some retailers — is telling their suppliers to either take the packaging away with them or not to supply such bulky packaging. Your supplier will comply because they want to keep supplying you."
Labels & Labeling (03/22/13) Houghton, Carol
An increase in demand for standalone packaging development services has prompted Apex Cylinders to establish its in-house graphic design division as an independent business. The gravure cylinder maker sees an opportunity to diversify and pursue new markets. Studio404 provides a technical perspective on how to fuse a creative vision with the printed product and is involved from the creative phase. The specialist graphics studio assesses the base artwork provided by the creative agency for its print feasibility and uses a Roland UV inkjet LEJ640 to print a color accurate image onto the production substrate. The process helps ensure that it is "indistinguishable visually and in terms of the way it feels" from the final product, said Allan Bendall, technical director at Studio404. "The artwork is evaluated prior to bulk artwork construction for the whole brand family, timelines are greatly reduced by managing the entire process under one roof, we do not resample graphic data, we maintain it throughout the entire workflow and costs are reduced by working on achievable artwork, greatly reducing rework rates."
Wide-Format Inkjet: Many Communities, One Process
WhatTheyThink (03/20/13) Marx, Dan
Dan Marx with the Specialty Graphic Imaging Association said both traditional and nontraditional printing segments are using wide-format inkjet technology as the de facto solution for differentiation, but there is no one universal approach used by all industry players. An early adopter was the graphics industry, and Marx said that "as the capabilities of wide-format evolved … wide-format inkjet has become the primary technology of most graphics companies. Because of this reality, this segment uses the widest variety of wide-format equipment and will benefit most from ongoing technological developments. These companies are the most likely to possess the broadest range of imaging and finishing technologies, utilize the widest range of materials and take advantage of the highest-productivity inkjet equipment."
The sign industry segment has a penchant for narrower low- to medium-production inkjet machines and a tendency to shun the growing number of high-production machines that are supporting the expansion of production grade printing in the graphics segment, Marx said. He also said most commercial printers view the use of wide-format inkjet technology as an add-on rather than the central element of the company's business. "Many commercial printing companies that offer wide-format inkjet printing likely do so on a limited scale," Marx said. Meanwhile, the photo imaging segment was an early adopter of wide-format digital technology, and Marx said many firms are branching out into graphics and sign production.
"Industrial printing companies … are increasingly using a variety of 'off-the-shelf' and custom-designed inkjet systems," Marx said. "These types of systems can be used for applications as common as parts marking and container printing, and as esoteric as the manufacture of snowboards and video screen technologies. While some of these applications utilize inkjet as a process for high-quality color printing, others see it as a tool that bridges the traditional divide between production speeds and mass customization within a manufacturing setting."
Wide-format inkjet technology also is seeing greater use in custom interior design materials manufacturing. "If your company is seeking opportunity in wide-format digital, start by thinking big: Investigate a broad range of equipment, materials, finishing technologies, markets and end products," Marx said. "Plan for success by building your wide-format efforts strongly into your business plan, and realize that to develop a wide-format plan based only on one-offs and short runs is to deny yourself the robustness that this technology has to offer."
The Knowledge Center at North Print & Pack
Packaging Europe (03/27/13) White, Libby
Packaging printers and converters attending North Print & Pack 2013 will benefit from an extensive free program of educational material. Informative talks, panel discussions, case studies and networking events are among items on the agenda, with each session designed to give printers the tools and ideas they require to successfully adopt to changes and opportunities in the market.
The Knowledge Center at North Print & Pack 2013 constitutes three theaters on the show floor, each of which concentrates on a specific theme. Those themes include The New Printing Landscape, Thinking Outside the Box and the Printers Profit Zone. Printers can utilize this content to build their own program from more than 30 informative and sessions during the event, while still having sufficient time to investigate the technologies and services being demonstrated.
The Thinking Outside the Box program devised in collaboration with the European Flexographic Industry Association will offer packaging converters and SME printers the tools they are seeking. "With the Thinking Outside the Box program at North Print & Pack 2013, we've set out to help packaging printers and converters quickly grasp the fundamental issues over the three days of North Print & Pack 2013," said sales manager for North Print & Pack 2013 Mary Buck. "A few hours spent in the Knowledge Center should enhance their understanding and help them engage even more credibly and productively with brand owners."
The first day of the Thinking Outside the Box program will focus on the significance of product packaging in driving purchase and consumption. Subsequent sessions include Packaging as Advertising — Communicating in New Ways with the Customers; the Importance of Investing in People before Technology; the Latest Value-Added Package Techniques; and Latest Trends of Packaging in a Digital World — Maximizing the On- and Offline Experience.
The second day of the program will include an exploration of packaging usability, finding better ways to package products and coverage of a series of stand-out packaging case studies from high profile brands. Subjects to be discussed on the third day of the program include responding to increasing demands for design accountability, and consideration of whether innovation is being restrained by the pressures of cost reduction, recycling and waste management.
Brands Plan to Bridge Physical, Digital Worlds with 3-D Printing
PRWeek (03/22/13) Daniels, Chris
Linking social promotions to the physical world through 3-D printing is the aspiration of forward-leading brands, which are already using the technology to engage media, consumers and online developers and designers. Three-dimensional printers can generate 3-D physical objects from a digital file. Angerman Communications Group President Nadra Angerman said brands provide journalists with 3-D-printed prototypes of new products as part of media relations campaigns.
Earlier in March, shoemaker New Balance said it began using 3-D printing to customize spike plates on shoes for professional athletes, and the company's Katherine Petrecca said New Balance's ultimate goal is to bring a similar offering to every customer. "We feel [going public early] will also help us be recognized as a leader in this space that companies want to partner with," she said.
Some 3-D printer manufacturers have issued simplified consumer desktop versions that cost as low as $1,200, presenting an opportunity for brands to engage printer-owning consumers. Chad Latz with Cohn & Wolfe said brands could design limited-edition products and share the digital file to allow consumers to print those products on demand. "The products could be used to generate publicity and socialize a campaign on social media," he said.
Earlier in 2013, Nokia released the 3-D design specifications of its Lumia smartphone so 3-D printer owners could fabricate their own cases. The company also recommended the materials for use and best practices with its development of a 3-D printing development kit (3DK). The "3DK experiment was more successful than even our most optimistic assumptions" in terms of interest from developers, consumers and other partners, said Nokia's John Kneeland. "For now, the best companies to start using 3-D printing in PR and marketing efforts are very forward-thinking, cutting-edge technology companies that have a tech-savvy, early adopter segment among their target audience," he said. "For these brands, the promotional potential is very exciting."
Brands have to guarantee they are supplying consumers with printable materials that they actually want, instead of just objects they can print for the sake of it, said Autodesk's LeeAnn Manon. "There's certainly a lot of potential for brands to enable customers to use digital assets to create physical items that are true to the brand, but also personal to the individual, potentially building tighter brand affinity or reach new markets," she said. "But it will be important to make sure that the process of creating the object to be 3-D printed, and of receiving the print, is tailored to appeal to the brand's target market and delivers on the brand promise."
Nanotechnology's Potential Impact on the Printing Industry
Nanowerk News (03/15/2013)
Benny Landa's Nanographic Printing technology, or Nanography, is distinct from other printing technologies by virtue of its application of an innovative system and printing process that uses Landa NanoInk, a proprietary water-based ink with nano-pigment particles. Nanography taps the benefits of digital printing, such as faster turnaround times, less waste, the ability to print runs as short as one copy and variable data printing. Inkjet printing jets transfer the image directly onto the substrate, while Nanography first ejects the NanoInk dispersions onto a heated blanket, and only then is the ink transferred from the blanket to the substrate as an ultra-thin film.
The Nanography process is unique through employment of the nano-sized pigments to absorb more light than other pigments, thus allowing images with ultra-sharp dots of extremely high uniformity, high gloss fidelity and a broad CMYK color range, covering at least 15 percent more Pantone colors than offset printing. Furthermore, the Landa NanoInk pigments permit digital printing at high speeds, the ability to print on ordinary coated and uncoated paper stocks and on practically any plastic packaging film or label stock and the generation of abrasion- and scratch-resistant images.
Landa Nanographic Printing Presses have eight print bars and can print up to eight different colors at the same time. Moreover, the print bars can be used for CMYK, spot or specialty colors, such as white. The eight print bar configuration allows two color bars for each color, which in conjunction with doubling the paper handling system speed, can double productivity and still maintain print quality. The precise timing of the ink drop ejection onto the heated blanket results in very high accuracy between print separations as well as high color plane registration.
What You Need to Know About Wide-Format Scanners
Wide-Format Imaging (04/13) Steele, Jeffrey
Wide-format scanning can be leveraged by print service providers (PSPs) to boost profits, as long as they weigh the proper considerations and choose the technology that suits them best. The integrated all-in-one printer and scanner commands a greater share of sales today, partly because compactness is needed in many settings due to limited available space. The prevalence of color in most scanning is another underlying reason. “The obvious [profit opportunity] is for shops to offer scanning services, where the customer brings their documents in” for scanning, said Colortrac President Malcolm Lane. “Another is to provide facilities management, in which scanners can be located on the customers’ sites, and jobs completed there.”
There has been little change in the technology behind scanning in the last several years. Contact Image Sensor and Charged Coupled Device are the preferred scanning technologies, with the latter type of scanners generating the best color quality, making them more appropriate for reproducing posters, artwork, photography, paintings and fine art, said Paradigm Imaging President Randy Geesman.
The choice of scanner best suited for a PSP will depend on which options and alternatives are the highest priorities at the shop. Document width and volume, whether the PSP is a service bureau, whether documents to be scanned include those that are mounted, whether the documents are fragile or not, the desired image resolution and recommended products are all factors that can play into the ultimate choice of scanner.
The future direction of scanning technology is likely to dovetail with greater opportunity for PSPs to profit through scanning services in the coming years. “One of the cool technologies I saw at an event in Florida was a 3-D scanner designed for manufacturing,” said Hewlett-Packard's Eric DuPaul. “You move the laser around a stationary object, and it gathers point data. That data is imported into a 3-D software program that can then be manipulated and incorporated into a design.”
For B2B Marketing, Email Should Be Targeted and Personalized
eMarketer (03/15/13) Ross, Maribeth
Maribeth Ross is the vice president of marketing for NetProspex, a business-to-business email and offline data services company with a database of more than 37 million B2B contacts. In an interview with eMarketer, she discussed how to use content for lead generation and customer relationship building. Ross said a new use of email might include a marketing automation system that is fully integrated with your website and is tracking behavior from the first visit. You gain an understanding of the visitor's interests, offer content that he or she will like and provide more in-depth content in exchange for information, such as their title and industry, she said. Ross said companies doing CRM mailings are taking a more personalized approach, and one best practice is making sure the account manager or assigned salesperson directly communicates with the customer. When asked about the underlying best practice in content marketing, Ross said she always encourages her marketing team to think like the buyer. "Put themselves in the shoes of the buyer and really figure out whether it makes sense — if the timing makes sense, and if the content is important enough to put in front of them," she said.
Use Freebies to Boost Your Sales
Intuit Small Business Blog (03/20/13) Polevoi, Lee
Giving away goods and services to advertise a business' brand and increase sales of related products or features is a successful strategy for luring new customers and cultivating customer loyalty. Before ascertaining what kind of freebie to offer customers and prospects, your business should establish a clear business goal, which can include building trust and interest in the business, enrolling more newsletter subscribers, boosting web traffic, generating qualified leads, boosting Facebook followers and producing buzz to get people interested.
The best kind of freebie is one that is extremely cheap to produce yet delivers quantifiable results. If your business is rolling out a new product or service, you should consider offering it on a one-time, free-trial basis. Other freebies include white papers, promotional products, a free consultation, samples of foods or snack items and software and mobile apps. Once you have determined what freebies to offer, consider collaborating with another local business to cross-promote complementary products or present a package deal.
In the meantime, you should contact websites, blogs, forums and other social communities that seek out online promotions and ask them to share your offer with their freebie-hungry readers or subscribers. This leads to improved visibility.
10 Tips to Help You Become a 'Superhero' Marketer
blog.eloqua.com (03/27/13) Batista, Amanda
The modern marketing landscape demands that marketers target, engage and measure their efforts more effectively, which is an especially challenging mandate for companies with limited resources, budget or staff. When it comes to applying the central ideal attributes to one's marketing strategy to function more like a marketing giant, there are various strategies available. One is to enhance your targeting strategies by building a more complete picture of potential prospects through their online behavior. Before doing so, however, you should identify the roles and responsibilities of those participating in the buying process.
You should make customer centricity, and not product centricity, the driving force of meaningful, mutually beneficial engagement. Meanwhile, the effective provision of value-based content where and when your customers want to interact requires development of strategies to address and align messaging across all digital channels. Automating your campaigns enables improvement of the buyer’s experience, development of loyal relationships and more effective tracking of conversion data.
Furthermore, modern marketers are sifting through conversion data to obtain insights into marketing initiatives, and providing insight on trends, stage conversion history and other key metrics. Deployment of the appropriate analytics systems can help you arrive at critical decisions concerning which elements of your marketing efforts are effective or ineffective, and supply the reporting tools needed to warrant those decisions by linking them directly with pipeline and revenue. Modern marketers also can align their content sharing efforts with the social channels most likely to fuel higher traffic and engagement, realizing maximum impact of each campaign and increasing marketing return on investment.
In addition, marketing teams should effectively and efficiently analyze a vast amount of unstructured data stemming from the enhanced concentration on social media and the various digital marketing vehicles. Finally, because modern marketers are fulfilling other sales-oriented responsibilities, greater visibility and participation into key tasks such as lead qualification, inside sales team management and sales operations will be essential for marketing teams.