Overabove Blog

Mr. Frazzles, as he’s lovingly known at Overabove, is today’s quintessential consumer.

Today’s consumer is, in a word, inundated. Brands compete for attention 24/7, sending messages through countless channels that come at the consumer from every direction. As marketers, our job is to help our clients cut through the clutter. We’re constantly developing strategies and staying a step ahead to make sure our messages drive action. In doing this, brands tend to focus online, throwing their weight behind email, social and other digital marketing.

While online marketing is, of course, a wildly important part of any strategy, we might be missing other opportunities to make an impact. Say, with advances in direct mail printing.

Yep, even marketing’s Old Faithful can be optimized in new ways!

Technology has changed drastically over the past decade, and printers are no exception. Gone are the days when offset printing was synonymous with quality, while digital printing could only promise a quick turnaround. Today’s digital applications produce stunning quality, while offering the flexibility needed to help your direct mail stand out.

What are the benefits of digital printing?

  • Quick turnaround. Still true. Need a job printed last minute? Digital is the way to go.
  • No set-up fee. Offset printing means creating custom metal plates for each project, which ups the cost, especially for low-volume jobs. Digital doesn’t have to deal with this.
  • Peace of mind. With offset printing, a missed typo means creating an entirely new metal plate, and with it, time and money. Digitals printers let you customize quality control measures any way you want without even stopping the presses.

So how can it help cut through the clutter?

Variable data – or the ability to customize the message to each consumer – helps direct mail pieces stand out. When it comes to changing information within a single print job, digital is the only option. And variable data goes far beyond a brochure with the recipient’s name on it. It allows a college to create one mail piece but customize the cover image to match a student’s interests. It lets a retailer tailor a postcard’s headline to different age groups or genders or income levels. Personalization gives consumers the authentic experience they’re searching for from brands today.

Of course, the right messaging is key to a successful direct mail marketing plan. It doesn’t matter whether you’re using an offset or digital press if the strategy isn’t sound. Your agency partner should understand how to optimize your message for digital printing, while keeping you on budget and on time.

Direct mail may be an “old” marketing channel, but if we apply the same strategic thinking that we use for digital media, there’s no reason we can’t teach it new tricks.

Ann Marie Bahantka

Director of Production