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Commentary & Analysis

A New Market is Born

By Frank J.

By WhatTheyThink Staff
Published: March 30, 2005

By Frank J. Romano In business, communicating makes a difference where it really counts--on the bottom line." March 30, 2005 -- Right audience. Right message. Right time. That is the mantra of a new kind of company that has grown up because of digital printing and Internet technology. It is not quite an ad agency; not quite a printer; not quite a direct-mail house. It is a unique entity that integrates marketing communications. It is well over a billion-dollar market and it is not on anyone's radar. Last year, I heard about DME in Daytona, Florida. DME describes itself as a direct-mail marketing company with fully integrated marketing service solutions. DME's vision is to "step out-of-the-box" and combine new technology and marketing media with innovative designs, while creating integrated communications that are truly personalized and targeted to individual customers. They handle the entire process on-site, from interactive voice response to direct mail and print production, Internet marketing services to multimedia CD-ROMs, and database management, to live inbound and outbound telephone marketing. Recently, I learned of Sourcelink, Deerfield, Illinois. Their motto is that they are business generation agents. SourceLink provides strategic marketing and has established a reputation of creative, functional, and effective programs with Fortune 500 clients. From strategy development through campaign fulfillment, they have the research tools, creative minds, and experienced professionals that help develop effective marketing strategies. Both DME and SourceLink have over 800 employees and multiple high-end digital-color printers. Then I sat at lunch at an XPLOR meeting with someone from InFormco in Ontario. They provided similar services. They are integrated graphic communication specialists: "Because in business, communicating makes a difference where it really counts--on the bottom line." D-mail and e-mail marketing are key channels to convey promotional offers, especially for brands lacking a retail presence. If you throw in Vertis and ValPak and Valassis (The V-trinity) and even Cenveo (with the bi-pronounceable name), you have a group of companies that almost defy definition. Sometimes we count them as printers, but their clients see them as something quite different. Marketers tell me that with the consumer market as fragmented and segmented as it is, it's essential that we reach consumers where they are with a message that will get them to act now. D-mail and e-mail marketing are key channels to convey promotional offers, especially for brands lacking a retail presence. There may be replacement of direct mail with e-mail, particularly in business-to-business, but there is much more activity combining direct mail and e-mail approaches. Digital printing is taking mail personalization to a new level. In today's highly competitive business market, developing an innovative, strategic marketing plan is key to generating revenue and gaining market share. These new services provide insights that only a fully integrated communications company can. Because they are single-source providers of communications solutions, they can integrate conceptual development and creative through to design, printing, distribution and inventory management--and, most important, tracking and measurement to evaluate success.

 

 

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