The Money-Saving Magic of Personalization

Nov 15, 2010

If you are a marketer, you probably share a lot in common with a magician. Your budget is continually being squeezed. Yet, you are always being asked to do more with less. What are you supposed to do? Pull results out of your hat?

Personalization to the rescue! Did you know that by personalizing your documents, you could not only achieve better results, but actually save money?

Did we say “save”? Absolutely. While marketers are used to thinking about 1:1 printing as having a higher cost than other types of printing, this is on a per-piece basis. When you look at the overall cost of the campaign, 1:1 printing has a track record of actually being able to save marketers money.


The savings come from two directions:

First, personalized printing is database-driven, so it starts with smaller, more targeted mailings than traditional direct mail. If you produce a smart, well-crafted campaign, you can actually receive better results from a smaller investment.

Second, if you had been sending out large volumes of undifferentiated information, you can reduce the size of each booklet or information packet by personalizing it to contain only information relevant to the recipient. This slashes the number of pages you mail, saving both production and postage costs.


All of them! Marketers in a wide variety of vertical markets experience similar cost savings and results. This includes insurance, pharmaceutical, financial, manufacturing—any market in which marketers send out large volumes of undifferentiated information and packets of static literature.

Does this describe elements of your marketing program? If so, stop wasting money. Personalize it!


Saving Through Targeting:

When the University of Toronto wanted to increase its donations and respondent base, it switched to personalized printing. Before it sent out the mailing, however, it carefully culled its existing database for the most likely respondents. Next, it appended its list with potential new donors based on careful analysis of its database of past graduates and their families. The result was an updated mailing list that was 50% smaller than the previous list but likely to generate more revenue. In the end, the university increased its donor base by 80% and increased its revenue by 30%. It also experienced tremendous cost savings in postage, envelopes and other consumables.

Saving Through Streamlining:

Franklin University wanted to boost its enrollment applications. It had been producing expensive, full-sized view books, but most of the information was irrelevant to the prospective student. The university replaced its generic view book and full-sized course catalogs with a personalized 11×17 four-page, color brochure based on questions answered by prospective students on its Web site. Once a week, the university downloads 1:1 files, prints them and mails them. The brochures reach the prospective students within 10 days. Since Franklin started offering personalized brochures, it has realized a 60% cost savings from its previous inquiry packet.

More Insights to Enjoy:

+ 7 Ways to Help Stretch Your Print Dollars

+ Think Personalization, Think Green

+ Are You Thinking of One to One Printing Too Narrowly?

© Action Graphics, 2010. Article taken from Action Insights, Vol. 1, Issue 4. Sign up today to receive future issues of our newsletters.

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