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Web-To-Print Technology Improves Productivity

Executive Data Control has been involved with online ordering since the beginnings of peer-to-peer network access. Starting with bulletin boards for uploading print files way back in 1991 we lead the way in online print in Springfield Missouri. This web-to-print revolution is now 20 years old and the technology has only gotten more powerful. Back in the mid-nineties we moved to online proofing of business cards and we still process hundreds of these orders weekly for several billion dollar companies; Bass Pro Shops and O’Reilly Auto Parts immediately come to mind. Many of our customers use the online service to control the brand and the messaging of sales material; like sales sheets and brochures. An online template of a brochure that authorized people can access and change. Sometimes it is as easy as changing an address or the date of a sale. Some have us set up the system to identify the person who is logging in, a sales person for example, and then present personalized items. We can set up a brochure with the salespersons’ photo or the name of the branch or subsidiary where that person works. These can become very sophisticated process improvement projects and solve big problems for marketing departments at franchisors or manufacturers. Several of our customers formerly had a person utilize desktop publishing programs to personalize brochures for their customers. This could take hours to get a logo and photos and addresses and phone numbers from the affiliates and set art and send proofs and make changes back and forth for approval. Now they just have the affiliates go online, upload the logo, type in their own information, proof the piece and even pay for it on the spot using a credit card. This is a much faster process than before.
This same process can be used to generate portable document format electronic files. Maybe you don’t want to print the item, but you still need to maintain consistency and brand message for e-mails and internet landing pages. This is a great way to utilize and control cross-media capabilities. An online portal can drive creation of printed pieces that match an e-mail and an internet landing page. All these items can be personalized; even the URL of the landing page can be personalized. This way a campaign can be developed where John Smith can receive a postcard or an e-mail and be directed to John.Smith.companyname.com. Even better would be to allow John Smith to choose the way he wants to be contacted. Executive Data Control has always had consultation and process improvement at our core. We have been fortunate to have the ability to use so many tools to improve our customer’s productivity. This process mentality will only make our solutions better as the technology gets better. Can we help you improve your marketing supply chain?

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