Category

Direct Mail

Three Key Tips to Gain
Competitive Advantage in CPG

Undeniably, the Consumer Packaged Goods (CPG) industry faces unique challenges. Over the past five years, many CPG brands have experienced a decline in revenue and profits. Brands are struggling to keep up with changes in the industry, and some are consequently falling behind as the broader retail landscape changes.

According to Bain & Company’s Matthew Meacham, François Faelli, Eduardo Giménez, and John Blasberg in their article, “When we analyzed the performance of 34 of the world’s top 50 consumer goods companies in the last few years, we made the unsettling discovery that 85% of those big companies had seen a decline in either revenues, profits or both.”

In order to ensure future success, brands need to find ways to combat the current challenges in the industry. So, what can CPG brands do to overcome the current crisis in the industry?

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Be Agile with Emerging Trends

With advances in technology and the emergence of a new generation of shoppers, the CPG industry is constantly evolving. The wants and needs of customers are changing, along with the ways they shop. Brands that hope to survive in this ever-changing market need to keep up with the new trends.

One of the most significant trends is rapidly shifting in consumer behavior as they become more socially, environmentally, and health-conscious. This fast-growing trend contributed to the considerable disruption caused by small insurgent brands in many product categories, making the competition even more intense.

In order to support the new wave of consumers and to compete in the current market, brands should focus on establishing a robust multi-channel presence to connect with the target consumers where they are comfortable to interact and share.

When brands are aware of emerging market trends, they can come up with a plan to prepare for them ahead of time. By serving the consumer in the way they want to be served on par with the current trends, brands can outsmart the competition to be successful in the marketplace.

When brands are aware of emerging market trends, they can come up with a plan to prepare for them ahead of time.

Reinvent Brand’s Image

Brand marketers need to start thinking “outside the box” when it comes to engaging with customers. Instead of relying solely on legacy marketing tactics, brands should consider ways to draw in customers that they haven’t used before.

Meacham, Faelli, Giménez, and Blasberg explain: “Winning companies will innovate their way out with new products, new systems, and new needs that help elevate their categories to premium status while increasing product and assortment penetration.”

If keeping up with the current trends is “today forward” strategy, brands also will need to take “future back” approach to set their own destiny and progressing toward it.

By redefining the vision for your brand, and your company – future back approach – to rearticulate a meaningful, sustainable, and consumer-driven purposes will inspire to reset the brand’s sense of urgency and to become the frontline innovator.

“Winning companies will innovate their way out with new products, new systems, and new needs that help elevate their categories to premium status while increasing product and assortment penetration.”

Directly Engage with Customers

Traditionally, most CPG brands don’t maintain a relationship with customers after they make a purchase. However, if brands take the initiative to connect and develop lasting relationships with their shoppers, they will drive sales and increase their opportunities for upselling and cross-selling.

Adding the data-driven personalization in every customer touchpoint will significantly improve customer commitment to the brands, especially when a customer feels connected, understood, and valued by the brand.

One way is direct mail follow-ups with customers after they’ve purchased your product. Consumers typically respond positively to direct communication because they appreciate feeling that their feedback is important.

Also, brands should consider opening pop-up brick-and-mortar stores to improve engagement with consumers. Brands can more easily establish impactful connections with their shoppers in a physical store, where the entire consumer experience is curated by the brand.

There is no sales method more effective than good old-fashioned, positive, face-to-face interactions. When a customer leaves your store feeling like they’ve had a good experience, they are more likely to come back and also to encourage their friends and family members to shop there.

Accessibility of data is the most significant benefit to retailers from directly engaging with customers.

Conclusion

The current crisis in the CPG industry doesn’t mean that your brand is doomed to struggle. Instead, brand marketers should see these market challenges as opportunities to redefine their business by thinking of new, creative ways to engage with customers and drive sales.

Making sure you stay in the know regarding new market trends, coming up with innovative ideas for products and marketing tactics, and putting in the effort to reach out and directly engage with your customers are important steps you can take as a CPG brand marketer in order to flourish in today’s challenging market. By understanding these useful actions, CPG brands are more likely to remain profitable and ensure a successful future for their business.

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Why NVISION?

NVISION® is a marketing execution company helping Fortune 1000 organizations optimize their marketing supply chain process. We provide the expertise to simplify the creation, procurement, fulfillment, distribution and ongoing account management for customers’ printed marketing materials.

With 100 years of supply chain management expertise in streamlining operations, leveraging buying power and creating innovative solutions, we reduce cost and increase speed-to-market. NVISION provides dedicated experts that understand clients’ brand standards, internal processes, deadlines, and distribution needs.

We manage every step of the process to deliver marketing operations – simplified.

See how NVISION can help your business | Let’s start a conversation about your complimentary assessment!

2019 Top Marketing Trends:
The Holy Matrimony of Digital and Print Marketing

Top Marketing Trends

As forward-looking brands begin to build their marketing plans for 2019 and beyond, a few key trends have already started to emerge and will be important areas of focus for CMOs and marketing teams in the coming year. That’s according to John Hall of Forbes, who explains that more than ever, effective management of marketing operations resources – and its benefits – will be the way savvy brands set themselves apart in 2019.

Digital Advertisements Are Losing Effectiveness

Call it digital fatigue or an inevitable result of technology, but online advertisements – which used to be the hottest new things in marketing – are beginning to reach their saturation point. In fact, according to Business Insider, 30 percent of all internet users are expected to be using some form of online ad blocker by the end of 2019. Explains Hall, “[This] means that traditional digital ads now won’t even reach 30 percent of possible target audience members.” To get around this and reach that untapped audience, CMOs will need to get more creative with their marketing materials.

Creative Marketing Materials Can Set Your Brand Apart

As we mentioned above, no one is saying digital is dead. But to maintain (and grow) its effectiveness, ROI, and conversion rates, CMOs must find creative new ways to keep it fresh. And one of the best ways to do that is by linking it to your print and physical marketing activities. “People have been saying for a long time that print is dead,” Hall explains, “but I recently came across a company that used software to obtain physical addresses for clients and started sending them print newsletters. I also found that this campaign was extremely successful.”

Another compelling new trend using print marketing to add increased value to digital marketing is using postcards and direct mailers with URL links to digital assets. Sending direct mailers with URLs to digital assets is a clever – and creative – way to make your marketing rise above the digital noise, spam folders, and ad blockers.

Strategic Partnerships Correct Many Internal Roadblocks

Many otherwise savvy brands balk at the idea of using an external partner to manage any aspect of their marketing operations. But understanding the strategic benefits of these partnerships can add real value and help internal marketing teams hit their quotas. “There’s too much red tape with other departments,” Hall says as he describes the attitude of many internal teams. But bringing in outside management of certain activities can “fuel other parts of the company, resulting in better talent, lower costs, and improved relationships with investors.”

And indeed, that is the real added value of strategic marketing partnerships in 2019. With more and more “X as a service” industries opening up, more and more areas for highly specialized expertise have emerged. And by leveraging this expertise in specific areas – like print management or marketing supply chains – your brand can actually do more and enjoy a greater ROI than would be possible without the partnership.

Summary

As 2019 draws near, new marketing trends are on the horizon for CMOs everywhere. By keeping these tips in mind – not relying solely on digital, using print marketing to add value to your digital efforts, and leveraging trusted partnerships – your brand can succeed and stand out from the crowd in the new year.


[This] Business Insider, Mar 23, 2017. “30% of all Internet users will ad block by 2018.”

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30 percent of all internet users are expected to be using some form of online ad blocker by the end of 2019.

One of the best ways to add value to your digital marketing is by linking it to your print and physical marketing activities.

Bringing in outside management of certain activities can “fuel other parts of the company, resulting in better talent, lower costs, and improved relationships with investors.

Why NVISION?

NVISION® is a marketing execution company helping Fortune 1000 organizations optimize their marketing supply chain process. We provide the expertise to simplify the creation, procurement, fulfillment, distribution and ongoing account management for customers’ printed marketing materials.

With nearly 100 years of supply chain management expertise in streamlining operations, leveraging buying power and creating innovative solutions, we reduce cost and increase speed-to-market. NVISION provides dedicated experts that understand clients’ brand standards, internal processes, deadlines, and distribution needs.

We manage every step of the process to deliver marketing operations – simplified.

See how NVISION can help your business | Let’s start a conversation about your complimentary assessment!

Print Marketing Strikes Back with
Stronger Force for Retail

When it comes to retail and print marketing, a changing landscape is shifting the priorities of marketing teams everywhere. Digital media marketing continues to grow – industry estimates forecast digital marketing spend to hit $100.8 billion in 2018[1] – and this means CMOs must find new ways to get the most from their print marketing activities. But according to the same estimates, print marketing spend is expected to reach $97.8 billion this year – nearly equaling digital media marketing. There are a few big reasons why print marketing is still huge for retailers, and why smart CMOs are finding new ways to leverage it. That’s according to Neil O’Keefe of DMA, who breaks down the big uses for print marketing today.

Direct Mail Marketing Driving In-Store Retail

O’Keefe points out that one of the largest drivers of 2017 holiday sales was direct mail marketing activities. “Retailers often use print to leverage their private label offerings, as a means to drive visitors into their stores,” O’Keefe says. Though it may seem counterintuitive, physical mail is now a far more unique means of outreach than email. While countless junk emails go directly into customers’ spam folders each and every hour, an actual letter or mailer from a brand shows a much more personalized touch. And because of its physical nature, direct mail is an extremely effective way to drive customers to your brick-and-mortar stores with by-mail only promotions and coupons. Plus, you don’t need an up-to-date list of email addresses and several spam filter-dodging best practices to deliver it!

Print Marketing Still Reaches More Customers Than Digital

Digital channels are growing rapidly, but that growth still hasn’t equaled the overall market share that print still holds. “Print advertising is still very effective and doesn’t show signs of going away any time soon,” writes O’Keefe. “A recent International News Media Association article cites a Nielsen Homescan survey and concludes that about 80% of U.S. households still use traditional printed sources as their primary medium for information about stores, sales, and specials.”

Combining Print and Digital Marketing for Greater Conversion

One of the newest and most ingenious ways CMOs and marketing teams are leveraging print marketing is by using it to promote their digital marketing assets. Many marketers have discovered that a key way to take advantage of the higher open rate of physical mail is to send mailers with custom URLs and hyperlinks, directing the recipient to go online and download an asset, like a case study or infographic. This type of print outreach can make your digital marketing assets go further, too.

What’s more, many savvy retail marketers are using what they’ve learned about targeting and segmentation from digital marketing and applying those lessons to print marketing. “Retailers are doing more experimenting with new ways to send out deals on paper, sometimes mining online behavior or databases of shopper trends to improve their print marketing,” O’Keefe says. “This form of marketing reactivation is seen as cutting-edge, and capability that is generating much retailer interest.”

Summary

It’s no secret that digital marketing is growing rapidly. But, as O’Keefe says: “It is hard to imagine a strategy which accomplishes its goals without print as an integral component of the overall plan.” By understanding the new ways marketing teams can leverage print marketing, and how print marketing fits into a comprehensive marketing strategy, CMOs can make their budgets go further and enjoy a greater return on investment.


[1] MediaPost, Jan 12, 2018. “Digital Ad Spend To Surpass Traditional in 2018.”

Print marketing spend is expected to reach $97.8 billion this year – nearly equaling digital media marketing.

Direct mail is an extremely effective way to drive customers to your brick-and-mortar stores with by-mail only promotions and coupons.

Retailers are doing more experimenting with new ways to send out deals on paper, sometimes mining online behavior or databases of shopper trends to improve their print marketing.

Why NVISION?

NVISION® is a marketing execution company helping Fortune 1000 organizations optimize their marketing supply chain process. We provide the expertise to simplify the creation, procurement, fulfillment, distribution and ongoing account management for customers’ printed marketing materials.

With nearly 100 years of supply chain management expertise in streamlining operations, leveraging buying power and creating innovative solutions, we reduce cost and increase speed-to-market. NVISION provides dedicated experts that understand clients’ brand standards, internal processes, deadlines and distribution needs.

We manage every step of the process to deliver marketing operations – simplified.

See how NVISION can help your business | Let’s start a conversation about your complimentary assessment!

How Print Production Enables
Direct Mail Success for 2018

When it comes to marketing, there’s nothing like a personal touch. And while digital may be rising, print is still king.

That’s why it’s so important, when it comes to your direct mail marketing efforts, to choose print materials that are engaging, eye-catching, and leave a lasting impression in the minds of your customers and prospects.

Print materials, and the quality of your partner in producing them, remain a difference-maker for CMOs everywhere. That’s according to EdgeMark Partners, who have laid out some of the top direct mail trends for 2018, and how an agile print production partner can empower you to capitalize on them.

Let’s take a look!

Stand Out With Color

According to Pantone, the Color of the Year for 2018 is “Ultra Violet,” an eye-catching purple shade. We expect to see a rise in the usage of bright, vibrant colors as CMOs look for ways to use print to help their direct mail materials stand out from the other junk mail and bills in customers’ mailboxes.

So go ahead: create your vision in Ultra Violet!

Textures: Feel the Difference

The average customer spends fewer than eight seconds looking at an advertisement. And that is precisely the power of print materials and direct mail: they provide a tangible, palpable item that customers can hold in their hands and imprint on their memory.

Touch, after all, is one of the senses most closely tied to memory in the human brain.

By working with a partner that offers many different textures, stocks, weights, and shapes in their print production lines, you can create powerful, lasting impressions with your direct mailers.

Think Outside the Box With 3D

Thanks to advanced laser-cutting techniques now widely available, fold-out and pop-up mailers are now an affordable option at scale for many CMOs.

Imagine the lasting impact and powerful impression that comes from watching one of your products physically take shape in your customer’s hands. Add to that dynamic and eye-catching stamping options like foil and leaf, and you can create a direct mail marketing campaign unlike anything your competition is offering.

Personalization, Because Each Customer Matters

It’s absolutely critical that brands stand out from their competition by offering a superior customer experience. And that starts with personalized direct mail campaigns.

Not only do customers have a higher response rate to personalized mailers versus generic ones, but thanks to new tracking methods, CMOs can now send out mailers that speak exactly to a customer’s previous activities. If they’ve shown interest in a particular product, or tend to buy at a specific time of year, send them mailers that speak to the things you know they’re interested in.

What’s more, CMOs can and should include personalized coupons in their direct mailers. Discounts on specific items you know the customer is shopping for can be the final tool in your arsenal you need to close that deal and get them to convert.


Modern print marketing materials are still the lifeblood of the modern CMO. And when you partner with a trusted supply chain expert who is responsive and agile, a whole world of ways to leverage them in direct mail activities is opened.

We expect to see a rise in the usage of bright, vibrant colors as CMOs look for ways to use print to help their direct mail materials stand out from the other junk mail and bills in customers’ mailboxes.

Textured print materials provide a tangible, palpable item that customers can hold in their hands and imprint on their memory.

CMOs can and should include personalized coupons in their direct mailers.