Tag Archives: print and mailing solutions

How to transform your mailings using Hybrid Mail

Mailing solutions from your desktop designed to save you time and money!

It seems that direct mail is making a bit of a come back actually paper is making a come back; did it ever go away?

I’d like to go out on a limb here and state that people are probably getting fed up having their inboxes full with unsolicted emails from companies, individuals selling their services, expertise and skills from how to improve your SEO to how you must have the latest business management training and techniques.

Direct mail prospect opening rates have increased from 88% to 91% since 2006 and email acquisition open rates have fallen from 21% to 11% since 2007. (DMA)

In 2010 an average of 91% of prospect direct mail was opened including 96% for personal banking and 95% for stores mail. (Ebiquity Rapport 2010) Open rates for acquisition email 11% (DMA)

Social media and email campaigns are reducing marketers ROI “marketers are failing to maximise user engagement and the ROI of their social media and email campaigns by mis-timing the day and hours of their general release”(YesMail) The companies in this study included Banana Republic, Gap, Diesel, Abercrombie & Fitch and their social media activity was tracked over a three month period on facebook, twitter and YouTube.

If they cant get it right what hope for the rest of us?

SME’s are challenged with trying to attribute resources, time and money to fulfil a worthwhile social media campaign that generates enquiries for their business.

Is it psychological?

Organisations are becoming weary of sending email newsletters and are changing tactic by sending hard copy newsworthy items in the post.

There’s a tangible colourful product in your hand that you can glance through on the way to making a cup of coffee; theres also a sense of well being reading the written word rather than picking your way through an email and of course you can read it anywhere on the train, office, home and in the garden.

Increase in this type of activity is largely attributed to better targeting for example the percentage of mail where customers took action has increased from 4% in 2004 to 5% in 2010. (Royal Mail Consumer Panel 2010)

Enter hybrid mail. A combination of printing and posting as a bundled service. By combining mailings for lots of customers and by optimising downstream access, mailings just got a whole lot cheaper and easier to manage.

Using print-2-mail and effective personalisation can have a dramatic effect on your ROI – that is, good direct mail used in conjunction with intelligent e-commerce.

If you want to find out more about how to transform your mailings but not sure where to start then leave your details here and one of advisors will call you back.

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Hybrid Mail Solutions. How to save money when you post out anything!

Invoices, Statements, Letters, Customer Letters, Emergency Mailings, Debt Collection Letters, Holiday Greetings, Birthday invitations. Hybrid Mail Solutions.

Our Print-2-Mail solution straight from your desk top.

Our Print-2-Mail solution straight from your desk top.

As an organisation you will be posting out customer letters, mailshots, invoices and statements but the problem is COST and TIME.

The recent increases in postage have meant that companies have had to get smarter and more inventive when it comes to sending out customer letters.

E-billing, e-mailshots all have a very important place in the hierarchical scheme of things.

Certain documents such as legislative financial documents which are required to be paper; or customers who specifically request a paper document mean that you still need to have some kind of in-house print and mail solution.

Our desk top mailing solution

Using our Print-2-Mail service posting out the aforementioned documents just got a whole lot easier!

How?

Because with print-2-mail you can still mail out the same documents to your customers. It’s cheap,  it’s quick and you still retain control.

Why?

Using hybrid mail which is a combination of printing and posting as a bundled service. By combining small mailings for lots of customers and by utilising DSA (Downstream Access) pricing the process is very cost effective.

How do I save money? 

Print-2-Mail can reduce your mailing costs!

  • Increased staff productivity – staff no longer have to load and manage printers or stuff envelopes
  • Reduced postage costs – we sort your mail, consolidate it so you benefit from significant postal discounts
  • Reduced in-house equipment costs – general office printer usage goes down, cost of consumables is reduced because you are not using so much
  • Reduced stationery and consumable costs
  • Reduced paper wastage – using our postal validation system you can amend missing or incorrect addresses; alternatively you can download a PDF and ensure your customer database is up to date with the current postal address
  • Pay as you go – with no set up fee or software installation, print-2-mail enables you to send letters quickly and conveniently in the UK (Airmail coming soon)
  • Improved customer interaction – because the process is so quick and easy to use, your customers will benefit from your latest news; invoices will be printed when you need them
  • 1st and 2nd class mailings options are available to you and where letters exceed 15 pages they will go into a C4 envelope; pages exceeding 80 will be packaged accordingly

How do I control what is being mailed?

The Print-2-mail shop is so easy to use; every step of the way you can see what your total spend is, decide on colour or black and white, choose your postal service, it even manages documents that have variable pages for example you might have customers that receive single pages and others that may have extra sheets; our software  identifies those pages and manages the process seamlessly. From the dashboard you are able to manage your users and set budget levels. You can set up user permissions and monitor your print and mailing spend. You may want only the marketing department to have the option of printing in colour and other departments black and white documents. You can set a spend limit, determine which postage service is selected and  ensure corporate branding is maintained.

How can print-2-mail work for you?

Print-2-mail enables you to process your documents in a matter of minutes mailings can include mail shots, debt collection letters, emergency letter mailings, invoices, statements and general communication letters.

Aside of the obvious cost savings on print, fulfilment and postage there are the invisible cost savings of energy, equipment, stationery and consumables.

You can send out from 1 to 1,000’s of letters you can do this daily, monthly or; as and when you need to; there are no minimum volumes or minimum usage if you choose to use it for a month and then decide not to continue with the service there is no penalty for doing so!

That’s it, couldn’t be simpler or easier to use. If you want to see the benefits of our print-2-mail solution then request a demo now by filling in the form below or calling us: 01234-271156.

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Outsourcing Business Processes. Why outsource?

A necessary business evil or not?

The term outsourcing immediately conjures up a feeling of fear, creates a sense of foreboding and there tends to be a general misconception that it will lead to redundancies. Factor in a lack of awareness or understanding of the benefits that can actually be derived from outsouricng a particular business function or process of your organisation and you can understand why people pale in front of you when the “O” word is mentioned.

There are 12 good reasons why a company might like to consider outsourcing here!

As companies expand in size and in operations, management must become more focussed on core business activities and consider whether non essential, non core business activities can be outsourced to vendors who can provide the specialisation lacking in-house.

What is outsourcing?

Outsourcing some of your business processes can save you time and money!

Outsourcing some of your business processes can save you time and money! 

Outsourcing business processes is when you contract out a business function either a task, role or process to a third party over a substantial period of time.  The outsource provider ostensibly takes control of the function and becomes responsible for managing its effectiveness and ultimately its success.

Outsourcing has become synonymous with large enterprises who offshore manufacturing or call centre operations to remote providers based in China or India.

This is not a viable option for the SME or for organisations wanting to outsource maybe one or two business processes. An effective and cost saving option is to consider “nearshoring” the process by which a company outsources to a local service provider (when I say local I am referring to a UK based provider)

Outsourcing core business processes may save you money, note I suggest the word may. The success of the process and its overall effectiveness must be clearly defined and managed and there are some guidelines to consider here!

An outsourcing partner can give you flexibility and the help you need to manage growth this is offset with the benefits you derive by offering your business access to outside expertise and technologies without having to make massive investments in infrastructure change and maintenance. Outsourcing can be scaled to suit the changing needs of your business.

Why outsource?

If you have found yourself asking the:-

  • are my resources being used effectively?
  • are my current resources capable of supporting new technology?
  • is there a better and more efficient way of handling our processes?
  • do the employees have the operational expertise to manage the tasks internally?
  • what is this all really costing the business?

Then the benefits of outsourcing can be great.

Capital for start ups is limited and outsourcing some of your business processes can ensure you know exactly what your on-going monthly costs will be allowing you to allocate much needed funds to the development of the business.

Consider these points:-

How?

  1. Will outsourcing allow my business to focus on its strengths?
  2. Will it improve efficiency of the business?
  3. Will your business gain a competitive advantage?
  4. Will it save me money?

How will outsourcing help me?

Firstly it will focus you and the business on what the company specialises in providing it’s customers, here I mean the core business function, whether it’s making hats and shoes or screws and plugs. You wont be distracted into unproductive and non-profit making business activities.

Internal resources will be re-directed and re-focussed into core business activity.

Migration to new technologies without you having to make investment internally reduces the risk of bad purchasing, minimum downtime and productivity ensuring that a move to newer technologies is minimal.

In any outsourcing partnership risk is further reduced because the outsource partner will have disaster recovery and back up mechanisms in place providing a rapid response to any problem that besets your company.

Points to consider

Think through what you need and how the company will benefit!

  • What process(es) are you thinking of outsourcing and why?
  • Weigh the costs of doing it in-house VS outsourcing
  • Consider a consultant to help you set up a service provider
  • Consider what the on-going costs would be if you don’t outsource it
  • Are you prepared to invest in the time and management of the outsourcing relationship?
  • Do you have realistic expectations?
  • Are you outsourcing a key function which you really should keep in-house?
  • Finally weigh up the risks of outsourcing VS managing the process in-house!

Whatever your decision, outsourcing or keeping the process in-house, you will need to consider the cost implications and the longer term impact on your business.

One final thing.

To reap true, tangible cost savings the process must be carefully managed and monitored. In other words the relationship must be built on trust, knowledge, security and ultimately become a partnership! Much like a marriage!

What do you think?

Have you outsourced a component of your business?

How successful was it?

Would you do it again?

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For more information about how to outsource click here

Printing mailing services. How to benefit from cheaper print and mailing solutions

Postage charges increased last April 2012 with a 1st class stamp costing 60p and a second class stamp 50p. In spite of these increases many businesses mail out a constant stream of marketing letters, invoices, direct mail and obligatory customer letters and printing mailing services have never seemed more expensive.

If your company or organisation cannot reclaim VAT, your postage costs can only go one way – UP.

Businesses that rely on bulk mailings and use the royal mail’s bulk mailing services such as mailsort, presstream, walksort, cleanmail, packetpost, advertising mail, sustainable mail and standard tariff will have experienced rising mailing costs.

Irrespective of escalating postage and mailing costs there are a number of measures that an organisation can undertake to ensure the cost of print and mailing is kept at a reasonable cost level.

How?

By optimising all or some of the following.

Multi-channel distribution 

Multi-channel distribution of business documents – your data file is broken down into those letters that are required to be printed and mailed, electronically sent or documents that need to be printed and then returned to a head office or delivered to regional offices all from one data file. Providing you with a complete printing and mailing service.

How can this work for my business? print-2-mail desktop to door mat

Working with a mailing solutions partner who will advise you what the alternatives are and provide guidance on the best method to ensure your mailing is a success.

Whether it is getting those invoices out to your customers on time or a direct mail piece, a print and mailing solutions provider will take your data file containing names and addresses, extract the letters that are required to be printed and mailed, electronically send documents to those recipients and return those documents that are required to be internally distributed back to head office and regional locations.

To find out how to choose the right mailing solutions provider click here

print-2-mail from desktop to doormat mail solutions

DSA 

DSA is the term used to describe mail which has been collected and distributed by a competitor of the Royal Mail but is delivered into the Royal Mail centres for final processing onto local offices. The cost savings per envelope depending on weight can be substantial saving companies as much as 0.24p per envelope.

Electronic

Not quite as straightforward to get your customers to accept the fact that you will be communicating with them solely via email and not everyone of your customers will want to receive an electronic bill, statement or letter for all sorts of different reasons but as long as you follow the process I’ve outlined here you can see your postage costs reduce substantially.

Beware, your customers perception may be a negative one.

If you are wanting to drive your mailing costs down by moving to an electronic system of sending out your documents you need to be aware that some customers will view that you have effectively passed the costs of processing and in many cases, printing to your customer.

If they don’t have an effective accounts payable/invoice processing system then there is the manual processing of your document at the customers end resulting in additional work.

Aside of the print and mailing solutions there are also known desktop mailing solutions.

How does this work?

Easy really if you click here there’s more information on how the system can help you reduce your mailing costs or click here to find out how mailing on a budget can make a difference to your organisation.

Finally…

Avoid the use of C4 envelopes

Avoid having to use 1st class Royal Mail

Maximise your discounts by using downstream access mailing

Use a hybrid mail solution like the one described above.

For more information on hybrid mailing solutions click here

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Hybrid mail solutions. How to mail out your letters on a budget!

From PC to Post – Print and Mailing Solutions made easier.

With the privatisation of the Royal Mail in October and the volume of letters delivered over the past five years in decline by 25% and expected to keep going down between 7-8% year on year postal services are on the decline.

The use of electronic methods of communication are on the increase and letter volumes are spiralling downward.

By 2015 it is estimated that the Royal Mail will have lost 40% of its business. (Hooper Report)

Postal trays are empty and the bulk of mail is carried by email servers.

What does the future hold for companies that still have a need to post out obligatory letters and forms or a few letters they might want to send out each week or month?

Although paper usage is declining paper isn’t going anywhere.

Whilst I have one foot firmly in the paper and the other in the paperless/electronic camp the fact is paper remains a recyclable, renewable and reusable substrate.

Recognised as the 7th largest industry in the UK, print provides a positive and meaningful purpose and retains a notable place in our business and domestic lives.

If you want to be able to continue to mail out customer letters there has to be a more cost effective viable mailing alternative!

Hybrid mail solutions

Are a unique online mail management solution for all your letter printing and mailing requirements.

How does it work?

When you generate a letter in-house you need five things, a PC, a printer, an envelope, paper and a way of posting out your letters i.e. a stamp or by franking the envelope.

Hybrid mail takes away the hassle of the above as the only two elements needed are a PC and internet access.

The envelope, paper, printing equipment and the distribution are managed at a secure remote location and the process is completed for less than the cost of a second class stamp depending on whether you are printing in colour or single/double sided print.

It’s like having your own print and mailing services company a click away and it can manage any letter an organisation sends out from an insurance renewal policy, customer marketing letters, post cards in fact any customer interfacing document you regularly send out to your customers.

Hybrid mail will save time, reduce postal costs and minimise your carbon footprint.

How does the mailing solution work?

Hybrid mail services allows you to enter your mailing requirements via a website.

It is an online interface enabling you to upload letter files using pre-determined templates. You can upload your document in word format (.doc, .pdf, .rtf) personalise it by adding logos and key marketing messages, change the layout, proof each step of the way and then the rest is done by the hybrid mail provider.

By taking word documents or PDF’s a mail merge is performed using your uploaded data and letter they are then printed and posted for less than the cost of a stamp.

With no contract or minimum order restrictions this makes the perfect mailing solution for small to large companies.

Hybrid mail offers a great way to reduce your in-house print and mailing costs because right from the press of a button you will know exactly what the mailing will cost. There are no extra costs and no hidden extras.

Is it eco-friendly?

Yes. Using large volume printers which are more efficient and using paper bought from sustainable sources means save money because it reduces paper, printer and toner cartridge usage.

Businesses can expect to make impressive savings with no upfront costs required.

A PC or laptop, a file of names and addresses and the letter or letters you wish to send are all that is required to be up and running!

It couldn’t be simpler!

Our print-2-mail service is easy to use and free to set up. Call us for a demonstration

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3 Ways to Reduce Postage Costs

Postage

If you still mail out letters and bills there are some options that will save time and money

Businesses rely heavily on the Royal Mail in spite of the internet and the availability of sending documents electronically.

The UK Royal Mail increased their charges from April 2013 and businesses who use a multi-distribution method for delivery of their customer letters such as post and electronic delivery will no doubt have felt the impact of the postage costs on their bottom-line.

Despite the increase and depending on what volumes you mail out in a month there are 3 ways that can help you reduce the expenditure.

Using a print and mailing service provider offers a number of tangible benefits that will save you time and money. You can read more about how the service works here.

Use DSA (downstream access)

DSA is the term used to describe mail which has been collected and distributed by a competitor of the Royal Mail but is delivered into the Royal Mail centres for final processing in to local offices.

The cost savings per envelope depending on weight can be substantial and savings can be up to 13p per envelope using 2nd class mail. (Price will vary subject to weight)

Good Database Management

By ensuring that your data is current and reliable removes the issue of duplication.

Many companies over look the importance of recording their customers address and contact details and this results in duplicated addresses and most likely duplicated invoices arriving on the customers door step.

Maintaing your billing database (clicking on the link here will explain why data cleansing is important for your business) on a regular basis shows best practice and will save time and money and it doesn’t have to be a costly exercise.

A print and mailing service provider can check for errors and duplications using de-duping software.

envelopes

Address Inaccuracies

Sending invoices or statements to an incorrect address or defunct address can be costly!

Not only does the invoice go unpaid but the invoice then has to be re-printed and mailed out again effectively doubling your postage charge and increasing the processing and print time.

Incomplete addresses result in items being undelivered unless there is a return address on the envelope which will ensure the item is forwarded to the originator of the envelope.

But incorrectly or incomplete addresses means that the invoices have to be painstakingly checked and re-issued correctly. This takes up valuable company resources and slows cash collection too.

If you are faced with the challenge of getting your documents out on time there is an alternative solution called hybrid mail. If you click here you can find out more about what the service can do to speed up the mailing out process.

If you call Digital Print Management on 01234-271156 and ask for Caroline or drop us your email address here one of expert advisors will talk it through with you. What best suits your needs when it comes to mailing out your documents.