As an omnichannel communications company, we recognize the importance of providing digital and print solutions that move with customers as their ways of communicating evolve. That’s easy enough to say, but here are some stats we culled that illustrate the importance of providing this omnichannel experience from both the consumer and marketer perspectives.
–98% of Americans switch between devices in the same day. (Source: 2016 Google Research report)
-75% of consumers expect a consistent experience wherever they engage (e.g., website, social media, mobile, in person). (Source: 2016 State of the Connected Consumer Report)
–Companies with strong omnichannel strategies can expect to retain an average of 89% of their customers. (Source: Aberdeen Group, Inc.)
-86% of senior-level marketers agree that it’s important to create a cohesive customer journey across all touch points and channels. (Source: Salesforce)
With data showing that transactional documents are increasingly being used as promotional tools, it’s a good time to revisit some basic marketing practices. Here are some insights straight from the OSG Creative Studio.
- Make your message strategic.
We’ve mentioned before how important it is to use data to create dynamic messages. When you have real insight into your customers’ needs and patterns, the endless marketing options become more tailored and, ultimately, more effective. Use a paper bill to push the switch to e-bill. Up-sell or cross-sell one of your services. Offer an enticing promotion. Just make it count.
- Then make it pop.
Size the message properly, incorporate color, and avoid information overload. Less is more.
- Don’t disrupt the flow.
No marketing should disrupt the clarity of the bill or invoice’s key elements. Make sure the framework is there, so the message doesn’t add confusion. You might even consider upgrading your entire invoice package with envelope messaging or an additional messaging page.
As 2017 winds down, it’s a good time to think about the small marketing messages you can send to customers that will help you finish the year strong and begin the next one on the right foot. Start with something simple: Happy New Year.
We realize you might not want to send out a separate card or write a clever note. That’s not necessary—just use your envelope. Our Full Color Envelope Messaging℠ allows you to print a full color New Year’s message right on the outer envelope of your invoice or statement package. You can even add an image for more impact. Since research shows that customers are more likely to open an envelope with color on it than one without, you get the benefit of knowing they’re nearly guaranteed to see both the greeting and the invoice or bill.
OSG’s Dynamic Messaging is another way of reinforcing your brand and messaging on the invoice itself. We’ve gone over the many benefits of that before, but as January approaches, consider how we can help you use it effectively throughout the next year.
A nine to five strategy doesn’t work in a 24/7 business climate. From a company perspective, having access to your transactional document information any time of day isn’t a luxury—it’s essential.
We developed OSG Insight with that around-the-clock necessity in mind. This tool gives you a real-time snapshot into your business with us any time of day. Once you log into your account through our website, you can oversee all of your billing and invoicing jobs. Need to check the status of a file at 9 p.m.? Do it. We designed Insight to give you more control but also to increase the level of transparency with us as your billing partner. In short, you get insight into what we’re doing on our end.
You can also opt for even more control when you begin working with OSG. When we do your onboarding process, we can set your account for client review and release. You are the one who clicks Release This File to send the job off after a final review.
Additionally, you can manage the marketing component of your transactional documents through the portal. Your custom library—housed on the site—stores any marketing messages you create or upload. It also houses custom images specific to your company’s brand. Update your messaging, then edit and delete as you go.
Other Insight-ful things:
-Upload files to the OSG site for processing
-Run accounting reports based on OSG invoices
-See the status of past jobs as well as current ones
-Keep track of available insert inventory
-Run postage reports as far back as a year
Added bonus: You don’t need any special software for Insight. We host it.
Contact us for more details.
Back to school isn’t a day or a frame of mind—it’s a powerful marketing season that kicks off earlier than you might think. (Some schools start up again in early August.) And as one of the biggest spending seasons of the year, back to school is also an opportunity to drive some new business and get creative with your marketing efforts.
In other words, summer is over, but that can be a good thing.
The monthly invoice package you send customers can include an insert that’s designed within this framework. Offer “last chance” summer sales, promote the latest products and services you have, and anticipate your customers’ needs. These inserts are also a great way to touch base with them before the next big spending season.
OSG Creative Studio has a lot of experience creating these types of targeted messages , and we can come up with a fun campaign that fits within your brand guidelines and taps into this market. Contact us for more details before school’s back in session.
P.S. Don’t forget to follow us on Facebook for the latest updates!
From the Welcome Message to the WinBack Program, lifecycle marketing is a way of communicating with customers that adapts to their changing needs. Why is it so effective?
- Because lifecycle marketing acknowledges that customers aren’t static – they evolve.
You could say acquiring a new customer is step one of 100 steps, but it would be more accurate to say that it’s step one of an unknown number of steps. Customers’ needs change; what worked for them in January might be wearing thin by September. Keep in touch. Communication that’s tailored, creative and proactive–whether it’s done through surveys, milestone programs or referral solutions programs–has a positive influence on retention rate.
- Because it’s much easier to convert a lost customer than to win a new one.
It may seem counterintuitive that a “lost” customer would be more likely to return to the fold than a new customer would be to sign up, but the numbers don’t lie. Marketing Metrics show that probability of selling to a new prospect is 5-20 percent while the probability of selling to an existing customer is 60-70 percent. And consider it from customer’s perspective. Say the cost to renew a subscription to your favorite magazine increases. Even if you love the content, there’s a good chance you’ll pass. It’s not a rejection of the product; it’s a hold out on the price.
Imagine how much more cost-effective it would be for the magazine to send you a discount offer to renew rather than devise a completely new strategy to get the attention of a prospective customer.
- Because it’s more than just an invoice.
Would you want to hear from someone only when they’re asking for money?
OSG offers an array of lifecycle marketing solutions. Get in on them.
By Guest Author, Ashley Sherrow, OSG Manager of Production Graphics
Did you know that a dynamic message on an invoice or statement is a designated area that allows you connect directly with your audience? It’s your monthly opportunity to relay a specific message to your customer. And since research tells us that invoices are opened 97 percent of the time, you are virtually guaranteed of having your message read.
Using a little bit of creativity you can create a message that is eye-catching, colorful and informative. The OSG data-driven application, Campaign Composer, gives you full transpromotional marketing capabilities that compliment your statement or invoice package.
So what do you need to do?
First you’ll want to compose your message.
- You can do this using design programs such as InDesign or Illustrator. Designing your message in one of these programs makes the design process easy. Also, since these are the same programs we use in the OSG Creative Studio, should you need help, we can guide you through either of these programs to help you get the message you need created.
- Tip: If you are designing multiple messages within an area, it is a good idea to separate the messages with a thin line between each message, or a border around each message.
- This space provides a great opportunity to cross-sell and up-sell your services or even your customer’s services. Not sure what to feature? Think about deals, sales, promotions or even important messages you want to share with your customers.
Next, as long as you’re designing a bill or invoice, why not create a whole invoice package? You can coordinate by utilizing other OSG communications tools such as Envelope Messaging, Additional Message Page and OSG Inserts.
You’ll want to be sure you’re designing your message to its full potential. To ensure this, here are some things to pay attention to:
- Is the message sized correctly so that it will fit into the message space on the bill?
- How will your message look on the invoice/statement? Make sure your messages blend in with the colors and style of your invoice/statement.
- Have you used imagery and colors to your advantage?
- Choose bright colored images and text that will stand out and grab your audience’s attention.
- Remember, less is more – you don’t need to plaster the message area with tons information. Short and sweet. Then direct the customer to a website for them to gather more information.