How Variable Data Printing Works
Every day we are bombarded with thousands of various media, both physical and digital, from animated commercials to tons of free articles to read. You can break through the clutter and capture the audience’s attention only with a personalized interaction.
The transition from mass-marketing* printing to Variable Data Printing (VDP) and Personalization is the way you can stay ahead of the competition. It’s a fact stated by multiple studies, recipients pay more attention to personalized mail pieces. With personalized text and visuals created with variable data printing, your direct mail is no longer advertising, but a message to an individual.
Here some more statistics to prove the effectiveness of personalization:
- 75% of consumers like it when brands personalize messaging and offers. (Aberdeen Group)
- 86% of consumers say personalized marketing leads to a buying decision. (Infosys)
- 80% of consumers like it when retailers provide personalized suggestions. (DigitalCommerce360)
Personalized direct mail is highly-targeted and returns outstanding results, compared to bulk mailing. Most marketers know that personalized direct mail helps to increase response rates – by 36 percent in most cases.
Personalization isn’t complicated. Variable data printing can be quickly embraced by businesses that collect customer data regularly. Based on all personal data you can gather about your customer database: purchasing history, shopping preferences, psychographics, demographics, and lifestyle; you can create custom offers that appeal to the right person at the right time.
Personalizing your direct mail will increase your customer’s response rate and overall ROI. Other benefits of VDP include:
- The ability to reach customers on a one-to-one level and increase customer engagement.
- A dynamic content that develops personal communication.
- Testing offers and other variables against different segments.
- Using unique codes and PURLs (printed with VDP) allows tracking the effectiveness of your overall marketing strategies.
- A fast turnaround insured by VDP makes it easy for a company to send out materials to customers.
How does VDP work?
Delivering the right message to the right client at the right time can be done easily with Variable Data Printing. VDP is a database driven technology that uses a digital printer to personalize marketing materials. It allows, in particular, for text and graphics to change within a single press run.
Instead of 5,000 mail pieces with the same message, VDP enables you to print 5,000 mail pieces to each potential client without slowing down the printing process.
How does it work exactly?
- Collect your data from different sources that may include demographics, purchase or browsing history, social likes & dislikes, lifestyle, and habits.
- We create one design layout while you decide what variables the design can have: different background images, or different colors, and artwork.
- Personalize the offer based on clients’ personal data – gender, age, and birthday.
- Target the prospects located within a certain radius from your business.
- Use multiple variable data: from different prices and products to different locations and ad copy texts.
- Create a spreadsheet of key data points as they relate to the design and provide to us your spreadsheet data and the placement of variable elements.
- We print digitally your unique and personalized mail pieces for you to send them out. Or let us mail them out for you.
There are various forms of variable data printing, ranging from simple salutations and addressing to the fully variable changing of text and graphics.
You can use VDP also for A/B testing, sending out different versions of the same mailer to see which performs best. You can test out different creatives: graphics, images, offers, taglines, and anything else can vary on the mail piece.
Track the response rate effectively, by inserting with the help of VDP customer codes, or personalized URLs or call-tracking numbers to identify the segment that responded best to your offer. Knowing the results of your marketing efforts will help maximize the ROI you see from print marketing.
Also, you can use personalization to customize the offer, speak your clients’ language, or to build a personal relationship with them based on their personal data, location, or their purchasing history. Here are some examples of VDP usage to get started:
- Postcards with geographic location, person’s first and last name.
- Personalized invoices.
- Custom notepads or calendars with different messaging on each page while layout and design remain the same.
- Personalized cards with a coupon for a customer’s birthday.
- Discounts offered based on purchase history.
- Postcards with incentives in English and other languages, for instance, Spanish.
- Reply cards that ask for donations – with increasing or decreasing amounts, using data from previous donations.
To summarize, personalization can easily be embraced if you collect personal data from your customers on a regular basis. Personalized direct mail is highly-targeted and returns outstanding results that help marketers achieve a higher response rate.
* Mass marketing is a market strategy in which a firm decides to ignore market segment differences and appeal the whole market with one offer or one strategy.