Melanie De Caprio, VP of Marketing at SG360°, discusses the key findings of a recent study confirming how B2C marketers value personalized direct mail as part of their marketing mix, and why consumers — especially digital natives — enjoy receiving relevant direct mail pieces. View short video at: https://www.piworld.com/xchange/digital-printing/study-confirms-marketers-consumers-preference-relevant-direct-mail/#ne=d7f0e6e16b0d037f71fc050491da5623&utm_source=today-on-piworld&utm_medium=newsletter&utm_campaign=2021-10-07
When WPP's GroupM unveiled a new data ethics tool earlier this year, it raised questions about what others were doing to create tools, guidelines and policies governing the ethical use of consumer data. To find out, MediaPost teamed with Advertiser Perceptions to field a survey of advertisers and ad agency executives. The study, conducted in early September, found that less than half currently have or are planning to develop such policies -- even though the potential for liabilities continues to grow. More than half said they have no plans (23%) or are not sure if they will (32%).
A study released today by R.R. Donnelley & Sons Company reveals that traditional marketing channels, including word of mouth, direct mail, and in-store signage, are largely untapped by marketers. The study, based on surveys of both marketing professionals and consumers, uncovers significant differences between marketer assumptions and what consumers say actually influences their brand awareness and purchase decisions. The survey results underscore four key themes that all point to the power of traditional marketing methods and how social and digital marketing continue to evolve: Theme 1: It’s time to redefine (and re-engage) word of mouth - Word of mouth traditionally refers to consumers sharing product and brand recommendations with one another verbally. Today, this has evolved to include interactions between acquaintances on social media. Theme 2: Gen Y is most excited to receive direct mail - More than half (51%) of consumers were more excited to receive direct mail in the past year than they were in the year prior, with the highest levels among Gen Y (65%), Gen Z (57%), and Gen X (53%). Theme 3: Dear retailers, are you ready to return to normal? The good news for the retail sector is that 62% of consumers are eager to return to their pre-pandemic shopping habits. More than a third (35%) of consumers admit that the changes they made to their shopping habits due to the pandemic will only last less than 6 months. Theme 4: Pinterest and TikTok on the rise while influencers wane - While consumers indicated their preference for some forms of traditional marketing channels, their engagement with brands online and via social media continues to evolve, posing additional complexities for marketers looking to connect with their audiences.
With growing calls for consumer privacy on the web, Google parent company Alphabet Inc. and Apple Inc. plan or already have made major changes to customer tracking. Apple now requires user opt-in for apps to track users, and Google is getting rid of third-party cookies on its market-leading Chrome browser. While these changes hearten privacy advocates, they’re likely to disrupt online retailers’ longstanding marketing practices. Without accurate consumer tracking, merchants are worried that a portion of their ads will be less effective at driving sales. In response, merchants plan to shift their marketing dollars to other channels that are more predictable at driving revenue. Online cookies are small pieces of text websites placed on a site visitor’s browser to track preferences, such as language, to know what consumers are interested in, and facilitate other functions. More companies started using cookies in late 1995 after Microsoft Corp. integrated them into its Internet Explorer browser. There are many different types of cookies, but third-party cookies are controversial because advertisers, marketers and data-analytics firms place them on consumers’ devices to know where a consumer’s been on the web, leading to more targeted ads.
The data privacy and cybersecurity risks of email correspondence are finally getting the attention they deserve. There’s a growing awareness that “phishing” – the digital exploit of sending emails that look and feel like real communications from known senders, but instead contain or link to a variety of harms – is the menace behind an estimated 90% of cybersecurity compromises. Now, consumers are learning that 70% of emails they receive are tracking them in some way, thanks to groundbreaking analysis from Princeton computer scientist Steven Englehardt, PhD, and his research team. This is a very big deal for the millions of consumers who want the option to receive paper notices from their service providers. And it should ring alarm bells at companies that are removing paper choice, charging fees or switching customers to electronic delivery without express consent. The mere act of opening an email often unknowingly shares the recipient’s email address, triggering unwanted interactions with numerous third parties, which in turn enables additional tracking across the web that can potentially link the email to online activities without consent. Third party data brokers are sophisticated in creating extensive behavioral profiles across devices and even offline channels, all linked to consumers’ email addresses. And to make matters worse, popular free email services such as Google’s Gmail scan messages to collect data on things like purchases, travel details, even what bills are coming due.
There’s no lack of evidence suggesting direct mail delivers results. Take its average response rate: A respectable 5-9%, towering over that of email at less than 1%. Yet despite the smorgasbord of statistics underpinning its advantages, only about 50% of businesses report using direct mail in their marketing strategy, compared to over 80% utilizing email. Spoiler, it comes down to cost. The physical production and shipment of a printed mail piece typically comes with a larger price tag than that of digital mail. However, a strong mail campaign doesn’t have to be the budget-consuming super beast it’s cracked up to be. Knowing how to navigate USPS tools, and take advantage of postage efficiencies can cut costs significantly, and ultimately, increase your ROI. Here we’ve outlined some of the smartest ways to boost your return on investment and make your direct mail campaigns work harder without chewing through your budget.
Last month, my colleague, Michelle Houston (EVP, Client Services, CohereOne), offered her insights on how direct-to-consumer retail brands are weathering an onslaught of storms originating in 2020 that continue to disrupt day-to-day operations. This month, I will focus on one specific disruption: Apple’s recent privacy changes. If you haven’t closely followed this story, here’s a quick refresher. Earlier this year, Apple updated its operating software to pack more punch from a privacy standpoint. In short, iPhone and iPad users can more deliberately select whether or not the applications (“apps”) on their devices (social media platforms and games, in particular) can share their data for marketing purposes. Apple device users now routinely encounter pop-ups within the apps prompting an answer as to whether the user wants to allow the app to “track your activity across other companies’ apps and websites.”
In the direct-to-consumer landscape, brands should employ an optichannel strategy to stand out, but it’s important to ensure that once a brand has a consumer’s attention, they make it worth their time. In this session, J.Schmid President Brent Niemuth will discuss: • What brands that lead the way have in common • Three important characteristics that set successful direct-to-consumer brands apart • A look at some case studies of brands driving action through optichannel strategies. Register Now at: https://lndnm.napco.com/20210913_BRU_WBNR_ELITE_5990_LP.html?partnerref=JSCHMID
2021 is a perfect storm providing four challenges: *Paper: inventory is limited, prices continue to rise; *Postage: Mismanagement at the USPS continues to drive annual increases; *PPC Inflation: privacy and competition are driving cost upward; *Pandemic: while consumer confidence is still high, fears of inflation loom large. However, even the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse can’t kill print as the channel is currently booming – driving top-of-funnel opportunities, retargeting efforts, and creating more powerful and cost-effective prospecting audiences. Instead of waiting for customers or prospects to come to your site, print creates push campaigns that are highly profitable and cost-effective. Print marketing is still entirely relevant, even in this digital era, and smart marketers take advantage of this form of communication and the power it has with the human brain. Yes, the way we consume and share news and information has changed dramatically in the last 10 years alone. And, yes, digital marketing has in the recent past taken the limelight from traditional print media. read more at: https://cohereone.com/beware-the-four-horseman-of-the-apocalypse/
Yes, the forthcoming August 29, 2021 USPS rate increase is painful. But the USPS threw direct marketers a bone. Did you miss it? The USPS August rate case includes a size adjustment for first-class postcards. Marketers are no longer bound by the content restrictive size of 4.25” x 6” for First-Class Postcards. First-Class Postcards are now allowable up to 6” x 9”! August 29 pricing for this mail class ranges from $0.306/pc to $0.326/pc. Formerly 6” x 9” Postcards were required to mail at letter rates, either First-Class or Marketing Class depending on content. The new adjustment will give marketers a larger canvas to work with while also allowing them to benefit from the speedier in home delivery of First-Class Mail. more at: https://specialtyprintcomm.com/blog/ask-randy-good-news-usps/
At J.Schmid, we know catalogs. But we also know that in order to stay at the forefront of change and innovation you need to be a student of your craft. We’ve learned what works, what doesn’t, and where unexpected opportunities may lie. This blog series will showcase our expertise, as we take an in-depth review of well known (and lesser known) brand catalogs, uncovering triumphs and explaining mistakes, because even the best catalog can always be better. I’ve chosen a catalog from a brand that I was unfamiliar with. This was the first time I’ve seen the ROKA catalog, so it gave me a chance to view it through a fresh, unbiased lens (pun intended). These guys sell glasses. But not just any glasses. They design and make performance eyewear for athletes. Interesting concept. I’ll point out three things ROKA is doing well in their catalog, and three things they might improve upon. Hopefully these observations will help you identify strengths or weaknesses in your own book. read more at: https://www.jschmid.com/blog/catalog-critiques-making-bad-good-and-good-better/
The ad industry is urging California Attorney General Rob Bonta to withdraw a recent mandate that companies honor the “Global Privacy Control” -- a universal opt-out tool developed by privacy advocates. That mandate, which was announced earlier this month in a frequently-asked-questions response, “will cause confusion for consumers and businesses, rather than effectuating genuine user choices,” the Association of National Advertisers, Interactive Advertising Bureau, American Association of Advertising Agencies and other groups say in a letter sent Wednesday to Bonta. California's privacy law gives consumers the right to learn what personal information has been collected about them by companies, have that information deleted, and opt out of the sale of that data to third parties.
Colorado Governor Jared Polis has signed into law a privacy bill that will require companies to honor people's requests to opt out of targeted advertising -- including requests that consumers make through browser settings or other global mechanisms. With the move, Colorado is joining California, Virginia and Maine in requiring companies to allow state residents to wield more control over ad personalization. Colorado's "Protect Personal Data Privacy" (SB 21-190), signed Wednesday and slated to take effect in July of 2023, obligates companies to allow state residents opt out of the processing of their personal data for ad targeting. Personal data includes information that's “linked or reasonably linkable” to identified or identifiable individuals -- which covers a great deal of data used for personalized ads.
CohereOne, the premier direct-to-consumer marketing agency and strategic consultancy, is pleased to announce the addition of Rob Santangelo as Senior Vice President of New Business Development. Santangelo joins CohereOne after six years at Belardi Wong in New York, where he successfully spearheaded the business development infrastructure for the marketing strategy and creative services firm. As both the youngest director and vice president in company history, Santangelo closed business with over 200 top brands during his tenure and generated at least $1 million in new business revenue each year. “CohereOne has been enjoying tremendous growth,” said Tim Curtis, President / CEO of CohereOne. “The addition of Rob supercharges our effort to serve the burgeoning direct-to-consumer industry. His insights and his understanding of how digital native brands launch and expand their use of the direct mail channel speaks for itself.” Santangelo began his career at 1-800-Flowers.com, and rapidly advanced in the organization from Associate Category Manager and Category Manager of Ecommerce Merchandising to Manager of Fulfillment Partnership Sales. Under his direction, the company’s Fruit Bouquets product line increased its fulfillment footprint from 13% to 78%.
Sears perfected the direct-to-consumer (DTC) model, long before DTC was widely known. Macy’s continued it with its legendary Christmas catalogs, as did many others, but the Sears catalog was the Gold Standard. While the catalog fell out of favor over the past 15 years or so, it is making a comeback. According to eMarketer, DTC revenues grew about 24% in 2020, and the marketing push by brands is driving much of that. DTC is the promotion and sale of products to consumers directly by the brands or manufacturers, effectively eliminating the in-store experience. While brands often do have physical retail stores, they are increasingly marketing their products directly to consumers. One of the ways they are doing that in 2021 is through catalogs mailed directly to homes. “We are seeing a huge resurgence in direct mail,” Polly Wong, president of Belardi Wong, a direct mail company for top brands such as Parachute, Levi’s, Untuckit, Pottery Barn, Williams Sonoma and more. much more at source: https://www.freightwaves.com/news/brands-turn-the-page-back-to-catalogs-as-powerful-dtc-marketing-tool
Disrupt. Delight. Drive. Three words that, together, form a mandate for our catalogs. From crowded mailboxes our books need to stand out and garner attention; pay off that attention with content that creates desire, and – ultimately – compel our customers to click, call or visit. It’s a tall order. And that first piece, Disrupt, is the 1st priority. If it doesn’t happen, the other two won’t. We could mail an 11” x 17” oversized book. That will get noticed. So would a ‘scratch and sniff’ cover? But most of us don’t have budget to add a bunch of bells and whistles just to make us louder than the other guys. I’m particularly mindful of this as I wade through the current flood of women’s clothing catalogs in my own mailbox, most of them conveying the long-suffering Spring + Early Summer + Mother’s Day mashup: covers graced with women pouring each other glasses of Rosé, or bikes with flower-filled baskets. Make no mistake: this is not a judgement, but a shared burden. What can we do—any of us—to stand out in a sea of perpetual sameness, when all we have to work with is the traditional, two-dimensional real estate of a catalog cover? For the rest of the story, go to: https://www.jschmid.com/blog/stand-out-in-a-sea-of-sameness/
Adobe announced the next generation of its Real-time Customer Data Platform (CDP), the only enterprise application architected from the ground up for first-party data-driven customer acquisition and engagement. Adobe Real-time CDP helps brands activate known and unknown customer data to manage the entire customer profile and journey seamlessly in one system, without the need for third-party cookies. The relationship between consumers and brands is rapidly evolving. Consumers today are more attentive to the data they share, which has resulted in a patchwork of privacy regulations globally. At the same time, expectations for personalized brand experiences remain at an all-time high, while third-party cookies, which marketers have historically relied on to track unknown visitors, will no longer be supported in browsers. This means brands will have to contend with reduced insight about unknown visitors to their digital properties while still trying to provide a compelling customer experience.
Creative and analytics teams are drastically different disciplines, driven by different personalities and workflows, which means that merging them takes purposeful planning. The timeline is the first big challenge. The creative team looks ahead, creating new campaigns to be launched in the future while analytics teams review the past, examining what happened and translating that into recommendations that apply to the creative team’s work. Additionally, the speed at which the creative team moves is another difficulty, making the task of stepping into the communication flow feel like stepping into a four-lane highway. But, it’s worthwhile! Data-driven creative performs better due to increased relevance and enhanced understanding of customer behavior. see more at: https://www.jschmid.com/blog/left-brain-creative/
What if I told you it’s possible to increase response by 5% or more? Sometimes returning to the proven foundations of effective catalog design can make that happen. Yes, the role of the catalog has changed over the last 10 years – dramatically. But what hasn’t changed is the basic human physics of how we process information. Let’s revisit the tried, true and tested techniques that every creative team should know. We guarantee that when you sharpen your creative skills, you’re better positioned for breakthrough results. much more at: https://www.jschmid.com/blog/knowledge-based-creative-the-physics-of-creative/
Google this week began testing its controversial cookie-less tracking and targeting system, which relies on placing Chrome users into audience segments based on their web-browsing history, and then transmitting data about those segments directly to publishers. The company has enrolled “a small percentage” of users in the United States and other countries in tests of its new, so-called "Federated Learning of Cohorts." The only way for people to opt out of the tests is by disabling third-party cookies in the Chrome settings -- though Google plans to offer an opt-out control in April.
Direct mail is experiencing a long overdue resurgence for retailers, hastened by the pandemic. Increasingly crowded ads on social media and Google, full email inboxes, SMS dings all day long ... while the much-maligned mailbox remained emptier as credit card offers dwindled and in-store postcard coupons were recycled. It’s not surprising that many e-commerce brands decided to communicate in a new “old” way and test direct mail. We had the pleasure of assisting several launches in 2020 — some planned before the lockdowns, others as a new COVID strategy. Two of the biggest surprises for folks new to mail are: 1. the amount of time it takes to properly put together an effective mailing; and 2. how expensive mailing can be. One of our print partners and I assisted a pure-play that mailed within three weeks of our first discussion … this is NOT typical and we don’t recommend it. Haste makes waste.
Agencies and clients agree that research-driven customer insights play an important role in the development of effective marketing and creative campaigns. At the same time, I’ll bet relatively few think of research as a creative process or discipline. The fact is, all research is (or should be) creative. The best researchers approach their work with an open and creative mindset that skillfully uncovers the information to successfully drive creative development. The constraints of time and budget—facts of life in the business world—should never be an excuse for missing out on insights that support business growth and lead to game-changing creative campaigns. much more at: https://www.jschmid.com/blog/all-research-is-creative/
There’s a lot to look forward to in 2021. With wide-spread vaccination on the horizon, relative relief from the global pandemic is close at hand. But even with a new layer of safety added to the retail shopping experience, one factor remains irrevocably changed — the consumer. The numbers back this. More than 65% of consumers intend to continue new buying behaviors acquired due to the pandemic during the post-vaccine era, according to one recent study. Another survey reveals that 56% of consumers plan to use BOPIS (buy-online-pickup-in-store) after the pandemic ends. While retailers ready themselves to meet the post-pandemic consumer online and in-store, one thing is clear. Retail success in the post-pandemic era isn’t so much about where you serve your customers as it is about how you create authentic, personalized omnichannel experiences that transcend the limits of your digital and physical touchpoints and create lasting brand loyalty.
I know. “Copywriting” and “formulas” sound like they don’t even belong in the same sentence, let alone the same concept. As someone who used to enjoy English class and all but cry their way through chemistry, I fully support words and numbers playing in separate sandboxes. But in marketing and advertising, there are in fact copy formulas you can use to disrupt and drive consumers to buy what you sell. The best formulas are easily remembered, quickly mastered, and can be used by novice and experienced writers alike. Knowing them can help you create copy that’s twice as effective, in about half the time. Formulas can also offer a boost when writer’s block sets in or help validate your work when you need a final gut check. Oh, and the reason they’re called formulas? Because they work! FORMULA #1: AIDA = Attention, Interest, Desire, Action; FORMULA #2: THE FOUR Cs = Clear, Concise, Compelling, Credible; FORMULA #3: FAB = Features, Advantages, Benefits.
From building trust with your customers to providing that feeling of excitement when opening the mailbox, here is a list of our top 10 advantages and benefits of direct mail marketing. Marketing is complex and marketing is evolving: Display, Social, Mobile, SMS, MMS, Personalized TV. However, some of the best results tied to improving brand awareness, customer retention and overall sales come from tried and true strategies such as direct mail. Here is a list of our top 10 advantages and benefits of direct mail marketing. Mail Remains Physical; People Enjoy Receiving Mail; Direct Mail Benefits from being Cost Effective; Personalized Data-Driven Marketing Benefits; Direct Marketing is a Multichannel Experience; Build Effective Brand Trust with Direct Mail; Direct Mail is Easy; Simplicity of Execution in Direct Mail Marketing; More Chances to be Creative
Catalogs are a tried-and-true instrument in a marketer’s toolbox delivering an in-depth product experience right to any home or office door. With the rise of the digital age, many thought that e-commerce would supplant catalogs, but the opposite has been true. Catalogs continue to hold their own as a marketing channel operating steadily alongside its digital brethren. Catalogs originated as a method to communicate product availability and highlight new goods. Now a company’s website functions in the same capacity and in real-time. Catalogs of today have evolved to serve as a means of inspiration, allowing consumers to visualize products in real-life situations with thoughtful detail and narratives. They also allow brands more room to tell their story and gain consumer trust. This can occur because, unlike the more frenzied pace of online shopping, catalog readers spend between 15 minutes to 30 minutes turning the pages and catalogs are retained for several weeks as a reminder to place an order, shop online, or visit a store. The staying power of catalogs owes itself in part to online shopping, as the two have formed a symbiotic relationship. A printed catalog allows companies to bridge the physical and digital marketing space that can still be targeted and measured.
The choices you make about your products' eCommerce packaging have implications that travel far beyond their customers' journey. The moment of unboxing is often the first physical interaction an eCommerce brand has with a new customer – and that moment has the potential to make a significant and lasting impact. It's crucial for brands navigating today's competitive online climate to win over new shoppers and convert them into repeat customers. That's why the people responsible for making decisions about product packaging must educate themselves about these materials. Paper is the Sustainable Choice - Compared to other materials, paper creates a minimal impact on the planet. Consumers Prefer Paper - Modern online shoppers are increasingly conscious of – and interested in – how businesses operate on a sustainability level, bringing packaging to the forefront of the many factors considered when deciding what brands to shop with. Creativity Elicits Enthusiasm - Contrary to plastic void fill options (commonly bubble wrap or air pillows), colorful and printed tissue paper-based interior packaging alternatives create endless possibilities to tell a brand's story while creating a unique and memorable unboxing experience. Adaptive, Efficient, and Innovative - Fortunately, an array of paper-based packaging options that serve an aesthetic purpose also offer protective advantages, adding operational efficiency to the fulfillment process – like Seaman Paper's robust portfolio of multipurpose paper-based products.
Many catalog mailers are seeing large increases in revenue and growth in their new-to-file buyers because of the surge in pandemic-driven online purchases. However, with the growth in the number of buyers comes lots of uncertainty. Are these new buyers different than buyers pre-pandemic? The business issue with the significant influx of pandemic buyers is whether they will convert into loyal customers and respond profitably to future catalog mailings. Response rates for pandemic buyers can be quickly tested to know if they are the same or different from the existing base of buyers. The new-to-file buyers can be broken out with precision. Segmenting should be straightforward.
The U.S. Postal Service reported fourth-quarter 2020 revenue and service volume Tuesday, reflecting the end of a year of turbulence -- both pandemic and political -- including its impact on marketing. While the report did not offer explanations for the shifts, the bottom line was a pronounced decline in media-related revenues -- both marketing mail and periodicals -- although commerce-related shipping services soared. The decline in marketing mail -- 5.6% in revenue and -3.9% in volume -- is significant, given that the fourth quarter of 2020 included what would normally be an exception period of political direct-mail marketing, in what otherwise was a banner year for political media and marketing spending.
The way people interact with brands is not as orderly or linear as a customer journey map seems to indicate – or a sales funnel, for that matter. I’m not implying that understanding, mapping and optimizing the customer journey, and your path to conversion isn’t mandatory – it is. But I am suggesting that it’s worth looking further in an attempt to understand the way actual, living, breathing, thinking humans experience your brand. As a human, I can attest that my journey from awareness to purchase and later repurchase is never linear or orderly. If we drill down to a closer view, we can talk about the cluster of interactions that are driven by something the customer did. Place an order? There’s a cluster of activity there. Visit the website? There’s a cluster of interactions there. Sign up for email? Ad cluster. more at source: https://www.jschmid.com/blog/look-inside-the-customer-journey/
Retail print catalogs have often struggled at the expense of digital or online catalogs. As with so many aspects of our lives, the pandemic is causing change and lockdowns are proving that print is still very much a contender. It’s not hard to see why so many catalogs have transferred online. Digital does away with expensive printing and delivery charges and there’s no pulping of old catalogs or waiting around for new ones to be printed. The analytics associated with digital are now incredibly powerful, making it easy to collect large volumes of detailed data on user behaviors. An online catalog is a powerful package, so why is print making a comeback? With another national lockdown upon us, people are being forced to spend a huge proportion of their time at home and home is where print catalogs score. Recent research by Royal Mail revealed that 88% of people surveyed said they paid as much or more attention to mail during lockdown. This means leaflets and catalogs are far less likely to be dumped straight in the trash.
Catalogs are a tried-and-true instrument in a marketer’s toolbox delivering an in-depth product experience right to any home or office door. With the rise of the digital age, many thought that e-commerce would supplant catalogs, but the opposite has been true. Catalogs continue to hold their own as a marketing channel operating steadily alongside its digital brethren. Catalogs originated as a method to communicate product availability and highlight new goods. Now a company’s website functions in the same capacity and in real-time. Catalogs of today have evolved to serve as a means of inspiration, allowing consumers to visualize products in real-life situations with thoughtful detail and narratives. They also allow brands more room to tell their story and gain consumer trust. This can occur because, unlike the more frenzied pace of online shopping, catalog readers spend between 15 minutes to 30 minutes turning the pages and catalogs are retained for several weeks as a reminder to place an order, shop online, or visit a store.
A while back I wrote a blog about price as an often-overlooked brand positioning tool. Marketers are always looking for ways to influence how consumers perceive their brands in an effort to build relationships that are more than simply transactional. They know that effective brand positioning helps separate them from the competition and not just capture, but keep a larger share of both consumers’ minds and wallets. Here are six of the most common positioning strategies that companies use. Depending on the product category, some will be more effective than others and all come with some potential drawbacks. Learn more at: https://www.jschmid.com/blog/lets-talk-about-brand-positioning/
As many of us know, it’s easier and more profitable to reactivate a lapsed customer than trying to gain a new one, whether through digital, postal or retail. There are many techniques that are deployed in order to identity the proper audiences in the offline world, such as RFM+ segmentation and optimization, or modeling through a co-op. All of these techniques are tried and true and should continue to be used to identify the appropriate reactivation group for any campaign. But now there is a new player in the game and it’s proving to be a game changer. CohereOne has had a long-standing relationship with the digital company 4Cite, leaning on their technology to drive many programs, which has increased our client’s digital performance. Using their digital data, 4Cite could identify the postal address for anonymous site browsers and/or cart abandoners, and thus we quickly determined that we should be using that powerful data in our postal efforts. Learn more at: https://cohereone.com/a-game-changer-in-customer-reactivation/?utm_medium=email&_hsmi=107235557&_hsenc=p2ANqtz-9ESPdGAIhmNcVSGZR77As1qmy4lY9GqSh2PQ9NzBP9Kv4yqujTZTJsfpoWxLiFkdMvnjrIsPwNHFtnsS51cux8k_J2E-IohhzmZ_lBHIiBqBPTApg&utm_content=107235557&utm_source=hs_email
2020 is a year we will always remember, yet one we would like to forget. It was a year that changed our lives forever. Some have been affected more than others, but we all have a story to tell. People talk about “the new normal,” but what exactly does that mean to retailers and direct marketers? Let’s take a walk into the future and see what it looks like. Actually, we're living the future now. Several of our clients cut circulation in early 2020 in light of the advancing pandemic. They reduced their marketing efforts in anticipation of what was to come. It was the logical action to take, but for many consumer mailers, it was the wrong thing to do at the time. Revenues increased unexpectedly and remain strong today. Trips to retail stores reduced by at least half, and consumers went online to order gifts, apparel, home furnishings, food and other products. COVID changed the way we shop. It also leapfrogged us into the future. From a marketing standpoint, 2020 looks more like what we would have expected five years from now. read more at source: https://www.mytotalretail.com/post/catalog-and-digital-marketing-the-future-is-here-now/
When was the last time you truly enjoyed scrolling through page after page of search results on Amazon? Settling into your favorite chair to just explore and see what comes next? If you’re like most consumers, probably never, really. Search for products online is more like a task-oriented scavenger hunt to find the thing that best matches your keywords, “lost in the noise of digital advertising.” A catalog, on the other hand, is a journey in itself, an inspiring experience that opens up new ideas in a tactile way that our brains relish. Recent news from IKEA that they are doing away with their catalog after 70 years is going to break a lot of hearts; they were a prime example of catalogers who “get it” and turned paper and ink into a journey of possibilities. (And their wickedly good catalog marketing campaigns ensured robust buzz about it.) It’s a mistake, no doubt. Given the resurgence of catalogs during the pandemic lockdowns, marketers have no doubt that catalogs serve a critical function in the retail and e-commerce experience. much more at: https://freeportpress.com/the-experience-of-the-catalog-is-what-makes-it-work-so-well/
“Lift Off” is the new Sappi publication that explores and explains how pairing print with digital can be a potent formula for transforming marketing results. After all, there’s a reason why nine out of ten people remember a brand after receiving its advertising in their letterboxes. And why campaigns that use magazines deliver a 161% improvement in customer acquisition. And why, for that matter, targeted printed catalogue distribution during peak periods can generate ROI of between 300% and 900%. And there’s no reason why the strategic marketing implications of facts like these shouldn’t be brought home to more brands, advertisers and consumer companies.
As we approach a new year, these are the questions marketers should be asking. The world has been flipped upside-down and it’s critical that you question everything. Join the FWD forum as three industry partners provide answers, case-studies and a clear blueprint as you begin creating your own way FWD. Who should attend? Anyone involved with print, data & analytics and digital marketing are guaranteed to take away actionable items. Don’t miss this opportunity to create sustainable growth! register at: https://zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_c0Y_HYBLQ-q5zDvRTo88Lg?utm_medium=email&_hsmi=105454497&_hsenc=p2ANqtz-_sDUdrHspRB07QZuR_U74e8gCtoUmzrWVQ8TXh31iVIuS303LG6r4sQPXOmj5zQUYRNBfAPtZfPUL4MxDSi_W6xazrqEHSpCNPsZipXP5eHF1Kn84&utm_content=105454497&utm_source=hs_email
Well, it’s (finally) 2021. As we crawl carefully, still masked, out of the shadows of 2020, there is still much unknown. One trend I’m trying to understand is which way the external agency vs. in-house agency pendulum will swing. Some suggest that the multilayered crisis that was 2020 now has in-house teams shrinking due to the economic implications. The answer to this is to outsource marketing and creative to agencies, and save employee salaries, while giving companies the ability to flex the work – and the budget – up or down as needed. Things being what they are these days, the ability to quickly pivot your dollars and your direction is critical. But, I’d argue that there are compelling reasons and opportunities to work with an outside agency beyond the fiscal remedy. Even companies that continue to maintain an in-house team can benefit greatly from working with an outside agency: to support an overloaded team, deliver a shot of creative adrenaline or stir up habitual thinking with a new perspective. Learn more at: https://www.jschmid.com/blog/3-hidden-truths-of-hiring-an-outside-agency/
WHAT'S NEW? WHAT'S NOW? WHAT'S NEXT? As we approach a new year, these are the questions marketers should be asking. The world has been flipped upside-down and it’s critical that you question everything. Join the FWD forum as three industry partners provide answers, case-studies and a clear blueprint as you begin creating your own way FWD. Who should attend? Anyone involved with print, data & analytics and digital marketing are guaranteed to take away actionable items. Don’t miss this opportunity to create sustainable growth! January 27, 2021 10:00 AM - 12:30 PM Pacific Register at: https://zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_c0Y_HYBLQ-q5zDvRTo88Lg
It’s been a seven-decade-long run, but Ikea is formally saying goodbye to its printed catalog. The decision was announced Monday (Dec. 7) as the Ikea brand continues to shift itself to digital, according to published reports. At a peak four years ago, Ikea distributed 200 million catalogs worldwide in 32 languages. The BBC once reported that the Ikea catalog was the world’s largest publication, with more copies printed than either the Bible or the Quran. Of course, it’s not surprising that a retailer looking to focus on digital is exiting print. The same trend has been underway for the past decade or so in mass-market publishing. Print runs of books, newspapers and magazines have been more or less continuously on the decline as consumer preference for digitized content grows in the mobile era. What’s perhaps eye-catching in Ikea’s case and for the world of catalog publishing in general is how inconsistent that pullback actually seems to be when one looks at retail. For every Ikea that pulls out of the printed-catalog business, there seems to be a digital brand that’s pushing forward with a new physical catalog all its own. click read more below for the full article
Receiving the Amazon catalog in the mail seemed like an industry event. The biggest online retailer in the world mailing a catalog? For many of us that grew up in the catalog world, we felt vindicated; print is powerful. But with all the muscle in the world, how do you think their catalog stacked up? Did they take advantage of the power of this media or did they miss the mark? Is there anything we can learn from their efforts? Let’s dig in and see … https://www.jschmid.com/blog/the-amazon-catalog-the-good-bad-ugly/
Adobe announced the completion of its acquisition of Workfront, the leading work management platform for marketers with more than 3,000 customers and one million users. Adobe’s acquisition of Workfront will bring efficiency, collaboration and productivity gains to marketing teams currently challenged with siloed work management solutions. Both companies are established partners with strong product synergies and a growing base of over 1,000 shared customers, including Under Armour, Nordstrom, Prudential Financial, T-Mobile and The Home Depot. Satisfying the increasing expectations of B2B and B2C customers today requires large volumes of content and personalized marketing campaigns delivered at lightning speed and scale. This must be accomplished across increasingly dispersed teams, as remote work becomes prevalent in today’s environment and the future of work is redefined. Workfront has deep leadership in orchestrating marketing workflows. Workfront’s platform is agile and uniquely architected for the enterprise, with extensive integration capabilities that can be easily configured to meet the varied needs of companies of all sizes.
The home furnishings giant is ending publication of its annual catalog after 70 years, citing the increased shift to online browsing and shopping. “Turning the page with our beloved catalog is in fact a natural process since media consumption and customer behaviors have changed,” stated Konrad Grüss, managing director, Inter Ikea Systems B.V. “In order to reach and interact with the many people, we will keep inspiring with our home furnishing solutions in new ways.” The decision to discontinue the catalog comes as Ikea has enhanced its digital capabilities and online shopping. Last year, Ikea’s online retail sales increased by 45% worldwide, and its web site had more than four billion visits.
Tackling a global health crisis has looked different for different retailers. For United by Blue, an outdoor brand that sells through its own site as well as retail partners, it looked like holds on order shipments, followed by cancellations on those orders. It proved a tough position to effectively run a business. Mike Cangi, co-founder of United by Blue, said the company swiftly noticed that its peers were also struggling in the immediate aftermath of the pandemic, and thought there may be a solution in them all banding together. The result was a joint sales event between some 15 to 20 mission driven brands in April, dubbed "I Stand With Small," in an effort to drive traffic — and hopefully sales — to each other's businesses. "It was really just a joint marketing and sales tool for us to help get through what was a really tough time with a lot of uncertainty in April of this year," Cangi said. "And it was really successful." For the brands, it did what it was supposed to do: give them a lift at a much-needed time. But for consumers, it was also a plus, by introducing them to new brands that held similar values to the ones they already bought from, according to Cangi. After the initial sale's success, the companies started talking about working together again, and thus, the effort was renamed the Mission Brand Alliance and a website launched to showcase the brands in July. more at: https://www.retaildive.com/news/why-20-brands-are-sending-out-a-joint-holiday-catalog-this-season/591499/
Utah State University’s Outdoor Recreation Archive (ORA) currently encompasses around 3,000 outdoor catalogs from around 200 companies, ranging from a 1905 Abercrombie & Fitch catalog to a 2020 Altra Running catalog. Created as a joint effort between Utah’s State University’s Special Collections & Archives and the Outdoor Product Development and Design undergraduate program, the ORA is, in simple terms, a research collection of outdoor recreation history. And yet the seemingly niche academic project happens to fit perfectly with the ever-growing popularity of the outdoor style in contemporary fashion. 2020 saw the outdoor aesthetic boom in even greater popularity, with notable collaborations such as the Salehe Bembury x New Balance 2002 sneaker, the Greater Goods x Arc’teryx Artist Series, the Palace x Salomon XA COMP ADV sneaker taking center stage. The physical collection, initially launched back in March 2019, is currently housed at the University and a digital exhibit lives on Utah State’s library website for anyone to access. The ORA has also taken to exhibiting the archive on Instagram, launching an account in September later that year to reach a wider, non-academic audience and help grow interest around the history of the outdoor industry.
The holidays are here and e-commerce marketers are mapping out how to cope with the increased demand and competition this year will bring. To compound the seasonal rush, e-commerce continues to accelerate, and businesses are trying to plan ahead to jump-start their 2021 e-commerce sales. As they do, retailers are looking toward omnichannel strategies for targeted, personalized marketing to increase sales. But which channels and messages are proving to be the most engaging and effective sales drivers? Omnisend, an e-commerce marketing automation platform, recently released its Q3 stats report, highlighting the latest trends in marketing automation and channels like email, SMS and web push messages. From the report, one thing is clear: e-commerce businesses that can attract the right customers at the right time with the right message will thrive.
What a year! 2020 has been rough on a lot of people, and a huge catalyst for change. It’s changed where and how we work, how we talk to our customers, and especially the way customers shop and interact with brands as distance shopping has become critical. We wanted to take a minute to share the posts that our blog readers have visited the most in the past year. While not every article here was written in last year, their popularity proves that they are more timely and relevant than ever – even in the changing consumer landscape. see more at: https://www.jschmid.com/2020-reader-favorites/
As digital avenues have become more popular among today’s consumers (and as a result among marketers and advertisers), an interesting trend has emerged over the last few years. Direct mail – flyers, coupons, postcards, catalogs, etc. – has seen a resurgence in its effectiveness and its ability to connect brands with consumers, grab their attention, and drive purchases and engagements. Recent research has shown that consumers are engaging with direct mail marketing materials at much higher rates than with digital marketing assets, and that those engagements are leading to higher response rates and purchases. Mail catalogs in particular have seen a huge boost in their overall response rate, reportedly increasing by 170% from 2004 to 2018 according to the Association of National Advertisers. And rather surprisingly, mail catalogs seem to be popular with Millennials despite their digital upbringings. Perhaps it’s because there were nearly 294 billion emails sent per day in 2019, with that number projected to steadily grow over the next several years. Or maybe it’s because consumers are starting to feel a little creeped out by the hyper-personalized digital ads they’re receiving as they visit their favorite websites and social media platforms. Regardless of why consumers continue to embrace physical catalogs, (digital fatigue, privacy concerns, nostalgia, or something else entirely), an increasing number of retailers are taking notice and taking action.
If you hadn't noticed, the world is changing. People are looking for brands that can make their lives easier, more joyful, and somehow better. From a marketing perspective, now is the perfect time to review everything. How can your brand improve? What are some ways to increase your ROI? How can you stand out and be relevant when the world is upside-down? We've seen what's been working for other brands, and we can help. For a limited time only, we've put together some special offers to move your brand forward. go to: https://www.jschmid.com/special-offers-video/
We’ve just wrapped up our 8-part blog series on “Breakthrough Creative.” Hopefully, we’ve given you ideas and examples of how to improve your brand’s creative efforts—from storytelling techniques, to tips on photography and copywriting, to research, to better use of data. I understand all too well that the hardest part is yet to come—actually putting these ideas into action. Actually doing the work and investing the time, energy and money to get it right are easier said than done. So, now that we’ve armed you with some pointers on the things to do, I thought I’d give you some advice on what NOT to do. Here are three traps to avoid which will ultimately affect a healthy ROI. Learn what NOT to do at: https://www.jschmid.com/blog/breakthrough-creative-creative-killers/
The DMA Print Council has selected Sarah Burns, Head of Media Solutions at Edit, as its new Deputy Chair. It’s the second consecutive appointment to Deputy Chair that the UK’s leading intelligence body for print media has made from Edit. Burns enters the role with 10 years of experience in print media and a strong focus on creating sustainable print marketing. Speaking about Burns’s appointment, Chair of the DMA Print Council Alistair Ezzy said: “I am pleased to announce that Sarah Burns has joined the Print Council as Deputy Chair. Sarah will bring with her a wealth of knowledge in addition to her unbridled enthusiasm. I am looking forward to working with Sarah and putting the print channels back on the agenda by demonstrating their effectiveness, engagement and ability to integrate with other media.”
One day three statisticians went hunting in Maine. Out overlooking an open meadow, they spotted a deer, and the first one took a careful shot but missed by a yard to the left. Miraculously the deer never moved, allowing the second to take his shot, this time missing by a yard to the right. The third took his turn to aim and – BINGO! “We got it!” exclaimed the third with high fives all around. The marketing planning process can seem precisely like this, and people remember the misses more than anything. Sales and customer growth forecasting is complicated under the best of circumstances, and when planning for 2021, we’re all in for some difficult challenges. One basic principle of forecasting is to plan for normalcy, but this year was anything but typical, and there is still a great deal of uncertainty ahead. Several years ago, when we had more human interaction with our peers, I remember my colleague Matt Morton referencing the planning process as being “a bit of alchemy,” which stuck with me. I thought that was a great way to put it. Naturally, we’ll have previous results from which to work, but the real skill involves the ability to make sound assumptions for planning purposes. Get more at: https://cohereone.com/planning-in-chaos/?utm_medium=email&_hsmi=99162426&_hsenc=p2ANqtz-8Fe-e-x7FfpLs6vHkNUBAT-Qiz-lHoetPkpZ3bUZ_E7KVhQoQauWC908pY6r9_kJQFD3RcOl6hkg75lneVJTRK4snWbCwo_yJaUHmecdx01klgoPY&utm_content=99162426&utm_source=hs_email
Adobe announced it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Workfront, the leading work management platform for marketers, for $1.5 billion, subject to customary purchase price adjustments. With more than 3,000 customers and one million users, Workfront is the solution marketers rely on every day to efficiently manage content, plan and track marketing campaigns, and execute complex workflows across teams. Adobe solutions are at the nexus of creativity and customer experience management and mission-critical to marketers, creatives, analysts, and now, operations managers. Adobe Creative Cloud provides the world’s best creative apps and services to everyone, from students, to social media influencers, to professional photographers, filmmakers, and designers. Adobe Experience Cloud is the most comprehensive solution for content and commerce, customer journey management, and customer data and insights, all built on an open platform, enabling businesses of every size across every industry to deliver exceptional customer experiences at scale.
You’ve planned the photoshoot down to the tiniest detail. You’ve carefully selected the merchandise. You’ve agonized over the creative concepts. Every email, every landing page, every catalog page looks better than ever! But what if I told you that each of these could work even harder. When you combine data insights with creative, the whole becomes greater than the sum of the parts. Here are a few ideas for making smart, data-driven decisions to inform creative: https://www.jschmid.com/blog/breakthrough-creative-get-creative-with-data/
Covid-19 has changed consumer behaviour – perhaps forever. People are spending more time at home and this trend is set to continue. The way we consume media and the way brands build trust and drive customer action has also changed. It has never been more important for brands to build deeper, more engaging relationships with their customers. The latest insights, from Royal Mail Market Reach and JICMAIL, reveals the vital role physical mail is playing in a disrupted media landscape. During the initial lockdown, a record 96% of all mail was engaged with. Frequency of exposure to mail was at its highest ever recorded by JICMAIL and mail-driven online behaviour has increased by 70%*. The free guide is packed full of insight, stats, infographics, useful content, resources and tips on how to deliver effective and measurable direct mail campaigns to drive ROI for your business.
With mail volume down overall, marketers are reporting less competition and higher response rates with their direct mail and catalog campaigns. As more people stay (and shop) at home, each direct mail piece is being seen by more people in the household, and consumer catalog businesses are welcoming a significant increase in response, with many struggling to meet demand, writes Stephen Lett in Total Retail. Lett believes this favored status for catalogs and direct mail is likely to continue long after our current pandemic lifestyle is lifted. “Consumers are likely not to rush back to bars, restaurants, retail stores, etc., even when there’s a medically accepted vaccine. Many will remain cautious, adopting a wait-and-see attitude,” he writes. “Others will be set in new ways of functioning. They have adapted to a new and safer or more cautious way of living their everyday lives. The transition back to pre-COVID ways of doing things won’t be like flipping a light switch.”
Marketers and their creative partners know there is no sure thing when it comes to marketing. They spend resources creating assets; producing images and messages hoping to drive success for their brands. No matter the category, competition is always fierce and consumers have become increasingly fickle when it comes to their brand preferences. The pandemic has presented new challenges for marketers. With non-essential stores closed or closing, many retail brands have had to play catch up by creating or significantly increasing their digital presence as customers’ traditional shopping patterns adapt to this “new normal.” Brands and creative agencies are constantly looking for ways to improve their odds of success in today’s evolving marketplace. Research can certainly play an important role in this quest. Successful campaigns start with the answers to three critical questions: *What do your customers really want and need? *Do your customers believe your product meets those wants and needs? *What do your customers need to see/hear to convince them that your product is the right choice? read more at: https://www.jschmid.com/blog/breakthrough-creative-research/
The coronavirus has been a life-changing event. We've never experienced anything like this before. Baby Boomers were young when polio was nearly eradicated with the Salk vaccine in 1955. At that time, very little was known about polio, which paralyzed and often killed young children. Science has greatly advanced since then. Even so, until we have a proven vaccine, the spread of COVID-19 will continue and the so called “new normal” will evolve and become even more of a reality with every day that passes. COVID-19 has brought about changes in ways we never imagined. Changes in the way we shop, how we work from home, homeschool our children, entertain ourselves, and so much more. What we wouldn't have imagined prior to the coronavirus is becoming the new normal today. Some of the changes we've made will revert back to the old way of doing things once the virus passes. Many of the changes will remain at least for an extended period of time. Many consumer catalog and online businesses have seen a significant increase in response to the way people shop during the coronavirus — i.e., “The COVID factor.” The increase varies by product category.
HH Global has acquired Genii, an Australian owned marketing services provider. Genii was established in 2010 as a full service marketing execution business specialising in the provision of innovative, cost effective and strategic services to the retail sector. The company was founded by Marcus Smith and Layton Parslow and headquartered in Sydney. The acquisition will deliver significant value to the clients of both HH Global and Genii, through the strength of their combined proposition and scale. Existing Genii clients will benefit from HH Global’s worldwide reach, market-leading IP/Technology and significant support infrastructure, while HH Global are able to further enhance their offer to the retail and FMCG sectors and accelerate growth within their Australian business.
As visual creatures, we are compelled by what we see. Images draw our attention. They hold our interest. They spark our memories, our emotions. They move us to react, and to act. As marketers, we strive for breakthrough creative moments with our audience. We want to make an instant impression and invite them into our world. Photography, a moment captured in time, is a tremendous asset that tells the story of a brand. Photography can often be your biggest investment. And it can easily be your biggest impact. Here are three ways to make photography tell your story - go to: https://www.jschmid.com/blog/breakthrough-creative-photography/
At the height of the “shutdown” that began in late February, retailers were very unsure how COVID-19 would impact their business, their employees’ lives as well as their personal lives. Many brands reduced print, cut expensive marketing programs, and went to remote working almost immediately. There is no overstating the overwhelming effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on our personal and professional lives. Now that we have nine months behind us, what have we learned? Well, the American consumer generally doesn’t stop shopping; they just shop differently. It’s vital to understand and recognize that your customers’ needs change during a disruption of this magnitude, and it’s incumbent on the brand to respond by fulfilling them in unique ways. When brands better understand the nuances of changing customer behavior, there is opportunity to react differently to drive a stronger position to offer relevant and timely merchandise messaging and thus drive stronger demand. Read the entire assessment at: https://cohereone.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/10/CH1-Web-Analytic-Trends-through-Sep-2020-V4.pdf?utm_medium=email&_hsmi=97834829&_hsenc=p2ANqtz--ajRGVYmJUx1IK214btnKyNtdBwwQX0Mg1LKSKPHHeTrbVpn9ygCUT_rM3QV7k7tKv1-A5ld_NZWXXaswXjD_g5v1Uiul5ODlxbl8QbcyQlIAUpqI&utm_content=97834829&utm_source=hs_email
Ah, the ubiquitous—and critical—Call to Action. Great branding, sumptuous, emotional or humorous creative, a strong voice: they are the vessels that hold the CTA. The ask: to buy now; sign-up; get more information; go online; hurry, don’t miss this sale. For every response-driven tactic we create—from catalogs to emails—we need to ask ourselves, “What do we want the customer to do?” Indeed, high-level, impactive brand campaigns can be relieved of the CTA burden when awareness itself is the end goal. But for most of our day-to-day work, the collective “we” need to consider what behavior we are trying to provoke. Once that preferred action is defined, the CTA has the football. So many right and wrong ways to create a strong Call to Action. And so many opportunities to be creative while still getting the job done! Here are just a few thoughts in case you’re in a rut. For more, go to: https://www.jschmid.com/blog/breakthrough-creative-art-of-the-cta/
Brief: *Condé Nast's Allure magazine partnered with Perfect Corp., the developer of augmented reality (AR) activations for beauty products, to integrate virtual try-ons into its November issue, according to a press release. The AR-powered experience will be available in the publisher's "Ultimate Guide to Shopping" that hits newsstands Oct. 20. *To see the AR features, smartphone users can scan a QR code in the issue to download Perfect's YouCam Makeup app for free. The app, which overlays digital images of makeup on the live selfie view of a smartphone camera, will showcase beauty products featured in the magazine. *The AR experience not only showcases products used for the Allure's cover look, but also includes "Michelle's Most Wanted," the top choices from Editor-in-Chief Michelle Lee. The news shows how the publisher is evolving its holiday content strategy to meet shoppers on the mobile channels where they're spending more of their time.
A new study from Interpublic’s Magna and the IPG Media Lab reinforces the idea—embraced by the industry for a number of years now—that ad personalization is one of the best techniques to help brands deliver more relevant and effective ad experiences. The study focused on three key ad categories—auto, retail and finance—and includes responses from more than 6,000 participants. Testing was conducted on two audience types: brand target demographics and high-value audiences based on people-based IDs created by precision targeting platform Kinesso. Six types of data sources for personalization were tested: demos, past purchases, location, life events, search terms and precision messages for high-value audiences. The study found that most forms of ad personalization had some value and that higher levels of personalization were more effective at shifting difficult-to-move metrics.
Why do brands spend so much time and money on photoshoots? Because images matter a lot in marketing. The brain processes pictures first. But words matter, too. Alongside those great photos and great design is the copy on the page or screen. And this copy must be interesting, thoughtful and relevant. Most importantly, it must be engaging – driving your reader to take a very specific action (shop, donate, learn more, you get the idea). Sounds time-consuming to come up with just the right words, doesn’t it? It is. But like the fabulous photos your brand captures, engaging copy is another investment that’s well worth it. Because action from your reader means dolla dolla bills for your brand. Here are five tips to help you create copy that truly engages. go to: https://www.jschmid.com/blog/breakthrough-creative-gimme-5/
As part of its ongoing mission to ensure consumers are given a clear choice in how they receive essential information — on paper or digitally — and that they are not charged extra for paper bills and statements, Keep Me Posted (KMP) North America is investigating how large corporations are addressing consumer needs and expectations. Most recently, KMP looked at the billing practices of the top 10 Fortune 500 telecommunications companies to see how they align with KMP’s best practices for essential communications, which include: *No charges or other penalties for choosing paper bills *Prior consumer consent required before ceasing to send paper documents *No change in paper bill frequency without prior agreement *No difficulty to revert back to paper correspondence *Continued access to online options. The good news is that eight of America’s top 10 telecommunications conglomerates put their customers’ communication preferences first, do so without fees and make information on their practices easily accessible.
Simplicity in marketing isn’t easy to achieve but making engagement easy can be fairly simple. That sentence is a brain twister, right? Let me untangle the words. ‘Simple’ and ‘Easy’ are two different things, and both are critically important when it comes to effective marketing. Simple means making something uncomplicated, like expressing a brand proposition in just a few words. Easy means achieving something without effort, like creating an intuitive check-out funnel. The two concepts of simplicity and ease have been foundational in successful marketing for a long time. But if you consider that consumer attention span is only about 8 seconds, (down 30% from 2000), it makes focusing on simplicity and ease imperative. read more at: https://www.jschmid.com/blog/breakthrough-creative-art-of-simplicity/
Monday, Sept 14, 2020 Attend as our guest for FREE: Use code GUEST20 We’re all trying to sell something to someone. We have a great product, a great service, or a can’t-miss promotion that we want people to know about. We’ve decided to reach them through direct mail. But what should we say? What do we show? How do we stand out from all the other messages in the mailbox? And how do we do it in a matter of seconds? A smart strategy, a great mailing list and a stellar offer don’t mean anything if your creative execution is weak. There are certain creative secrets that have been proven through neuroscience that will increase the likelihood of your direct mail piece getting noticed and driving your customers to action. Simply following these four powerful recommendations will increase your chances of success. Good creative matters. Find out the secrets of how to do it. register at: https://www.ana.net/membersconference/register/id/MOC-SEP20E5
With back-to-school schedules everywhere in continual flux, this BTS shopping season has gotten as unpredictable as hurricane tracking. While the National Retailer Federation reports a large increase in consumer spending as parents buy pricey new laptops and desks for home schoolrooms, national advertisers are taking a hall pass. Kantar says advertising spending for back-to-school is off 70% so far this year. The best word for consumer sentiment is still confusion. Kantar’s polling finds 13% of consumers are comfortable sending children back to school “as soon as possible,” 14% want to wait more than six months, and 25% fall somewhere in between one and five months. More than half of also say they don’t know.
We’ve passed the six-month mark of living through a global pandemic. I’m not sure it’s an anniversary worth celebrating – it’s more of a ‘day-that-will-live-in-infamy’ type. In the retail world and working with consumer-facing brands, we’ve observed that many with a direct-to-consumer orientation have fared well. In contrast, the broader spectrum of the retail and consumer services sector has not. I’ll try to be as diplomatic as possible here – if there’s one thing Americans don’t like, it’s being told what to do. We tend to think of ourselves, our families, and our immediate communities – and probably in that order – as the best sources of information. State and federal guidelines tend to (at least initially) be met with resistance, especially when those guidelines affect one’s ability to earn a living, visit with family and loved ones, or eat a meal indoors at a restaurant. What the pandemic has revealed is simple: culture matters. Congregating limitations and business closure edicts, and the delay in loosening them, have put our culture on ice. Although, not entirely. read more at: https://cohereone.com/the-pandemic-matters-of-culture-and-why-direct-to-consumer-brands-are-thriving/
The opening session for the final day of the Virtual Inkjet Summit focused on direct mail, and what marketing will look like in a post-pandemic future. COVID-19 has reshaped how brands communicate with consumers in profound ways, and inkjet is, in many ways, perfectly positioned to be the technology that helps them reconnect in very personal, meaningful ways. Barb Pellow, manager, Pellow and Partners, sat down with Darrin Wilen, president of Wilen Direct, to discuss how the current climate has re-shaped business, and what that means for direct mail’s future, as well as the role inkjet will play. Pellow noted that one thing to keep in mind is that while some industries, such as travel, or membership mailings to local events or attractions, has dropped off dramatically over the past six months, the news isn’t all bad. In fact, some markets, such as health care, elder care services, personal care products, and educational products, among others, have actually see an increase in mailings.
Chances are, you’re currently trying to reach your audience in a variety of ways. Maybe digital ads, search, social media, catalog, direct mail and your retail environment. What if you could tie all those efforts together with a single creative concept—a “Big Idea” that unifies all of those touch points? And what if that consistent message was delivered in such a unique and bold way that you now stood out from the competition? People now notice you. They remember you. And now they will consider you. THAT’S the power of a campaign. Need some help getting started? Read our 8-part series at: https://www.jschmid.com/services/campaigns/
We’ve all seen people go crazy for tiny houses. There’s a reason for that: smaller means simpler, quicker to build, easier on the budget. Well, the same concept works for campaigns. It’s possible to build a small, agile campaign that reaches a portion of your audience and prospects too, with a friendlier bottom line. However, as with tiny houses, you still need a strategy, skill and planning to build it. Even if it is pocket-sized. It’s also useful for testing creative messages and visuals to gauge response before a big rollout. So what are the essential parts of a campaign, and how can you scale budget? Let’s take a look. Click Read More below
According to the Joint Industry Committee for Mail (JICMail), during Q2 the average piece of direct mail was interacted with 4.58 times, an 11% increase year-on-year and a record high since JICMail began tracking mail activity in Q2 2017. Door drops also garnered record levels of consumer engagement, with the average item interacted with 3.19 times, which represents 15% growth year-on-year. Business mail, essentially addressed mail that contains some form of bill or statement, also reported higher interaction figures, up 7% to 4.87 times. The various channels all recorded significant increases in the amount of time they live in the home with all three effectively extending their life-span by a day year-on-year: DM 8.5 days; door drops 6.9 days and business mail 9.6 days.
Now more than ever, amidst a global pandemic, people are leaving crowded cities and opting for a more suburban lifestyle where housing is more affordable, the risk of human interaction is less, and working from home is the new norm. Irrespective of what we’re seeing in recent months however, people are always moving. As marketers, it’s important that we follow our customers and greet them at their new home with the right content, since often times, a move can be a trigger for a purchase event. Working with several home furnishing brands, we are creating impactful and interesting new mover programs to stand out from more traditional mailings and to cater to their life event. This mail piece is a strong brand statement and will highlight a discount offer separate from other sales that may occur during that timeframe. Our clients are experiencing great success by creating content and messaging relevant to this new life event. In addition, we also take it step further – we identify the pre-movers. click read more below for the rest of the story
We all have our favorite marketing campaigns. Brilliant creative and flawless execution make them both memorable and compelling. Most of us can probably recite copy and tag lines from our favorites with little effort. Great campaigns stick with us long after they’ve run their course. But ultimately, the success of any marketing campaign is measured not by how memorable it is, but by how well it achieves its objective. Marketing campaigns can include a variety of elements: advertising, promotion, merchandising, public relations and social media. They can be splashy and costly or subtle and inexpensive. Big budgets don’t automatically guarantee success. Some of the most effective campaigns cost relatively little to produce and run. Marketing campaigns support a number of objectives. The most common types of campaigns include: click read more below
We’ve spent the last several weeks bringing you tips and tools to create a campaign that’s not only exciting, but memorable. Because regardless of your goal – changing perception, creating brand awareness, boosting social media engagement or reactivating lapsed customers – nothing will happen if your campaign fails to grab attention and leave customers with a clear takeaway. So now that you’re armed with the info you need (see Campaign Building Blocks, Parts 1-5), let’s dive into a few of the best ones. Which B2C and B2B brands have been successful in delivering killer campaigns that connect on a basic, human level? Grab your coffee (or cocktail, depending on what time you’re reading this) and we’ll take you through three well-executed examples. see the top 3 at: https://www.jschmid.com/blog/campaign-building-bloacks-killer-campaigns/
Marketing in a pandemic…how the heck do you do that?? A lot of us in the marketing world – including yours truly – have given this question quite a bit of thought since the start of the novel coronavirus. It’s been a crazy, frightening and ever-changing situation that seems to still be evolving more than half a year since it began. With many Americans cutting down their spending at this time, every blog post, advertisement or social media post might make you feel like Prince John and The Sheriff of Nottingham – the infamous villains in Robin Hood who regularly take advantage of the people of Nottinghamshire. In reality, all you really want to do is get the word out in a way that’s ethical, responsible and connects your product or service to people who feel it will make their life better. So, how do you responsibly go about marketing in a pandemic? click read more below...
Just a reminder to sign up for the upcoming free webinar, Rethinking Catalogs: New Technology, New Processes, New Economics, to be held on August 10th at 1:00 pm Eastern Time. Lands’ End Creative Director Daniel Hetzer and Inkjet Insight Founding Partner Elizabeth Gooding will discuss how catalog creative and production processes are adapting to new customer attitudes, technical capabilities and economic realities. Takeaways: • How shifting customer attitudes are affecting retail buying patterns • Objective approaches to measuring catalog and direct mail effectiveness • The impact of Covid-19 on cataloging • Trends toward personalization and customization that predate the pandemic and those that can be used effectively and efficiently • Consideration of new strategies for when to print, what to print and how to print. For more info and to register go to: https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_6eXQly3hTnmwD8mamsUJhg
As brands jump on the hashtag brand-wagon, one wonders if the effort truly makes a difference to the bottom line. Short answer? Absolutely. But, have some brands experienced major fails at achieving an ROI? Absolutely. Does it take a lot of effort and resources to get it right? Absolutely. Why even bother? Campaigns are an excellent tool to create brand awareness, drive traffic, engage customers, promote a product or service, boost social media followers and ultimately helps track and quantify your content. For a stale brand, a brand campaign is the perfect opportunity to blow new life into your business. click read more below to continue
One of the (many) advantages of working with CohereOne is the ability to aggregate data points from multiple sources to gain a clearer view on what can improve results for our clients. A strategy that has consistently stood out when we review results is the power of using “digital indicators” to identify customers who are more engaged with the brand when making selections on who to mail. We have found three that have proven to work in most cases: Email Opt-in vs. Opt-out: flagging your buyers on whether they have opted out of email marketing is a sure indication that they will not perform as well as buyers vs. those who have continued to hear from you. This delta is as high as 170% better for the opt-in buyers for one of our clients! click read more below for the rest...
Republican Senator Josh Hawley, a frequent critic of tech companies, has unveiled a bill that would require web publishers to avoid personalized advertising in order to maintain their protections from lawsuits based on users' speech. “Big Tech’s manipulative advertising regime comes with a massive hidden price tag for consumers while providing almost no return to anyone but themselves,” the Missouri lawmaker stated Tuesday. His proposed “Behavioral Advertising Decisions Are Downgrading Services (BAD ADS) Act” would strip large web companies of the protection of Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act if the companies either engage in what he calls “behavioral advertising,” or allow users' data to be collected for such advertising.
Why are marketing campaigns so effective? What is the secret behind the good ones that people remember and talk about (REI’s “Opt Outside”)? Quite simply, a BIG IDEA. The best marketing and advertising over the decades have always been driven by a singular great idea (“Got Milk?”). A core idea that ties everything together. An idea that resonates with the audience and makes them think about your product or service in a different way. Remove that big idea and all you’re doing is selling products, just like the other brands. Blah. But when you build your marketing efforts around a campaign, and use that “big idea” consistently across all touch points, it’s more likely to get noticed, more likely to be remembered, and more likely to engage people on a human level. In other words, campaigns work. It’s no secret that I’m a huge Beatles fan, so once again, I will use them as a way of illustrating my point. When Paul McCartney was thinking about a different way to go about recording a new album in 1966, he came up with a big idea that would drive the entire creative process. What if the four lads took on a different persona, actually changing the name of the band? What if they reinvented their identity just this one time? much more at: https://www.jschmid.com/blog/campaign-building-blocks-the-big-idea/
The ACMA is excited to cosponsor the upcoming webinar, Rethinking Catalogs: New Technology, New Processes, New Economics, to be held on August 10th at 1:00 pm Eastern Time. Lands’ End Creative Director Daniel Hetzer and Inkjet Insight Founding Partner Elizabeth Gooding will discuss how catalog creative and production processes are adapting to new customer attitudes, technical capabilities and economic realities. Takeaways: •How shifting customer attitudes are affecting retail buying patterns •Objective approaches to measuring catalog and direct mail effectiveness •The impact of Covid-19 on cataloging •Trends toward personalization and customization that predate the pandemic and those that can be used effectively and efficiently •Consideration of new strategies for when to print, what to print and how to print. Register at: https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_6eXQly3hTnmwD8mamsUJhg
It's the most responsive marketing channel. It reaches people at home and makes them feel good. Direct Mail still delivers. Learn how direct mail is driving results and how to apply it to your everyday marketing strategies through direct mail retargeting. see great information at: https://www.navistone.com/blog/direct-mail-still-delivers
When we first think of brand campaigns, what immediately comes to mind are all the greats. You know the ones. Got Milk. Just Do It. But there have been some great B2B campaigns, too. Remember Staples’ That Was Easy? So simple it was brilliant. It tied Staples directly to the solution, and everyone from CEOs to summer interns had one on their desk. B2B marketers can and should consider campaigns as powerful tools in their arsenal. If done well, they build brand awareness; they can galvanize all your marketing channels around a specific hook, idea and goal; and provide the steady drumbeat of a consistent message to the right audience. To that end, the building blocks of a successful B2B campaign follow the same tenets as a B2C campaign. But there are some considerations to keep in mind when developing a campaign for a business audience. learn more at: https://www.jschmid.com/blog/campaign-building-blocks-b2b-success/
Two Sides are excited to announce its newest member, the Marketing Agency, Edit, part of the Kin and Carta plc. Edit are a bunch of talented data scientists, media experts, and technology architects who create marketing that matters by obsessing about less. They provide print media to their clients around the world, with a focus on accurately targeting the right audience, with the right message, at the right time. “Edit is delighted to become a member. We look forward to working with Two Sides to promote the sustainable story of print media and enhance our own sustainability story,” says Head of Media Solutions, Sarah Burns.
Join PhillyDMA on Wednesday, July 29th for “Innovative Direct Mail: How to Drive Open Rates with Compelling Envelopes!" The PhillyDMA is proud to host Jim King - VP of Sales, Strategic Accounts at Cenveo - to discuss the latest envelope treatments used to increase package opening rates. Direct marketers who want to drive response will not want to miss out on the educational content and the lively networking! We will see you there. Tickets: $5.00 PDMA Member $10.00 Non-PDMA Member register at: https://phillydma.starchapter.com/meet-reg1.php?id=5
Crafting memorable creative that will compel and delight an audience is likely the most challenging task in the campaign process. Without a creative, brand-right theme, the campaign won’t get traction and meet objectives. That said, coordinating and executing the big idea is just as important. If the campaign isn’t organized and executed well the investment will be wasted. Here are the five essential steps for getting a marketing campaign off the ground: https://www.jschmid.com/blog/campaign-building-blocks-coordinate-your-campaign/
Web accessibility lawsuits are occurring at an alarming pace. Understanding the legal and technical guidelines of what is mandated is often tricky and confusing. Although the ADA (Americans with Disability Act) laws don’t formally specify compliance with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) set of technical standards, private business sites have to be accessible, and it’s well-accepted that compliance with WCAG is the best way to achieve that standard. Unfortunately, this growing trend in claims is also due in part to the significant complexity in implementing the WCAG guidelines. As a result, the painful reality is that the majority of sites do not meet these standards. Resolving issues manually or without technical expertise can be a struggle or even cause additional accessibility problems. Further complicating matters is that by its nature, ecommerce is driven by dynamic change, continually coming in from all directions. Often, the number of people contributing to the site increases the challenge to remain in compliance. In this environment, not having a plan to protect your business from these accessibility claims could leave merchants with significant legal exposure.
The following article is part of an ongoing series from J.Schmid with the critical elements and insights you need to strategize, execute and launch successful omnichannel campaigns. Watch your email and follow #CampaignBuildingBlocks on social media to keep up with the full story. Any successful campaign, at its core, is about storytelling. The iconic signature photo. The memorable language. The heart-tugging anthem video. The humorous Instagram posts. Content … it’s what tells your campaign story. How you engage on a sensory level. How you connect with your audience. How you use content is vital to the effectiveness of the campaign. Fortunately, there are more ways than ever to capture engaging content. And with increasingly tighter budgets, it’s more important than ever to maximize your efforts while saving money.
In the last two blogs written by Michelle Houston, she covered the importance of using Contribution Per Order (CPO), instead of ROAS when evaluating the performance of marketing programs. At the end of one of those blogs, she talked about the importance of also assessing and understanding the significance of lifetime value (LTV) as part of the equation. I wanted to continue that thread and take it a step further by incorporating LTV as the last step of the proper analysis into the equation. As covered in past discussions, LTV is an important metric to track as it will vary widely by acquisition source. When applied to the first order for a new customer, CPO is the equivalent to cost or profit per customer acquired. This will vary by acquisition source as well. When CPO is combined with LTV, those metrics are a powerful tool in driving your company in the right direction (or wrong direction if you’re not careful). In the analysis below, we can evaluate the total effect that CPO and LTV have on the current and future business.
As we come out of lock-down, more opportunities for businesses are emerging and it’s important for marketers to seize them. Direct mail is perfect for doing that as it can build more personal connections with the people who value your brand. It’s a topic we recently spoke about in our article ‘Direct mail provides opportunity for brands to cut through the noise‘. Mail is highly targeted and has a format which enables a longer narrative, perfect for sparking conversations. People like receiving, sharing and discussing it. And it is measurable – so you can track and optimise your campaigns.
Last week I wrote an article about why Contribution Per Order (CPO) should be the critical revenue metric that businesses use rather than Return On Ad Spend (ROAS). As a reminder, while ROAS is an efficient measuring metric, it cannot assign health to a channel, making it a relatively useless tool. In contrast to ROAS, Contribution Per Order (CPO) brings in the magnitude of the campaign segment targeted. This metric subtracts the marketing cost and cost of goods from each order to determine how profitable each of those segments is contributing to top-line demand and bottom-line profits. In one of my side comments in this blog, I mentioned the need to analyze Paid Search programs utilizing the same metrics and by further separating into branded terms vs. non-branded terms. In a recent year-end seasonal review with one of my clients, Paid Search was only reporting at a macro level (combining branded and non-branded search), which can be misleading. As shown below, Paid Search has a relatively positive CPO compared to traditional print prospecting (+$1.16 vs. -$2.15). Without understanding the full impact, this client was considering marketing decisions to expand Paid Search, reduce print prospecting, and potentially eliminate print programs—leading to potentially devastating results.
At this time, all mailing promotions are proceeding as scheduled with no changes. We will continue to evaluate existing and upcoming promotions in light of the rapidly changing circumstances due to COVID-19. If changes to an existing or upcoming promotion occur, notice will be provided in an Industry Alert and posted here, on our main PostalPro Promotion page: https://postalpro.usps.com/promotions Building upon the success of the Promotions Calendars over the last few years, the Postal Service has developed a Promotions Calendar for Calendar Year (CY) 2020. The 2020 Promotions continue to encourage marketers, printers, and mailers to utilize new technology and print techniques that enhance the traditional benefits of a physical mailpiece. This in turn can drive higher response rates and increase the overall return on the mailer’s investment in mail. By encouraging the use of technologies integrated in mail, the Postal Service expects to increase the value of direct mail and retain the volumes of transactional mail, thereby ensuring long-term product growth.
More often than not, we engage with seasoned ecommerce professionals tasked with running print programs while simultaneously holding some measure of responsibility for Profit & Loss statements. And as such, they tend to look at performance metrics with a ROAS (Return on Ad Spend) lens instead of a more critical metric – Contribution Per Order (CPO). Why is that important, and why does ROAS lack adequate insight as a key metric? Let me explain. While ROAS is an efficient measuring metric, it cannot assign health to a channel, making it a relatively useless tool. The reality is it could be hurting your business as a primary form of indicator. ROAS can't tell you how much money you are making for every order received. As an example, a ROAS of 6x is more efficient than a ROAS of 5x, but that doesn't mean you made more money (or any money). A ROAS of 6x on $10 did not make you more money than a ROAS of 5x on $10,000,000. The volume grew top-line demand, but it did not increase profits. In contrast to ROAS, Contribution Per Order (CPO) brings in the magnitude of the campaign segment targeted (marketing cost and cost of goods). This metric will help with your payroll and to keep the lights on – in other words -- adding top-line demand and bottom-line profits.
Three online advertisers are suing Google for allegedly violating antitrust laws by monopolizing "digital advertising markets." “Google leveraged its stranglehold on online search and search advertising to gain an illegal monopoly in brokering display advertising on other companies’ websites,” the marketers allege in a class-action complaint filed last week in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California. The case was filed on behalf of Washington, D.C. tour company Grand Atlas Tours, Delray Beach, Florida-based Prana Pets (which sells herbs for dogs and cats) and the San Francisco law firm Hanson Law. They claim Google “achieved this market dominance in part by acquiring rivals in the online advertising space, conditioning access to its search-results data and YouTube video advertising platform upon the purchase of its separate display advertising services, and ensuring those systems were not compatible with those of its competitors in online advertising."
Understanding how to stand out in the mailbox is more important than ever in 2020 and beyond, especially so because of today’s competition for consumer attention. In fact, a 2015 study said the average American is exposed to anywhere between 4,000 and 10,000 ads per day. That’s madness! With the large majority of these being digital ads, this provides a huge opportunity for direct mail and print marketing campaigns. Though the average person’s mailbox is much less crowded now than it has been in decades, this competition for consumer attention is more fierce than it has ever been. That’s why when it comes to your direct mail marketing campaign, you need to be very calculated in your approach; understanding cost, attribution, average ROI and the overall health of your house file are vital considerations that must occur with the launch of any successful direct mail program. Click Read More below for details