Articles by Guest Contributor


Why should we care so much about data security?

Monday, August 1st, 2011

As I regularly share with employees there are two main ways I think about this question. First is being a good corporate citizen and recognize that we have a responsibility to secure the data we are entrusted with to protect the privacy of individuals. According to ITRC more than 35 million data records were compromised…

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Segmentation Strategies

Tuesday, July 19th, 2011

There are numerous requests these days involving segmentation. With the onslaught of digital print and other media, companies are starting to take personalized communication seriously. One of the most common questions I am asked is what to segment on. Some companies just want to take a basic demographic approach related to consumers. Others are focused…

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Océ Press Go! Webinars… Are They Worth It?

Wednesday, June 15th, 2011

If you’ve visited this blog before, you’ve likely noticed the advertisement on the top right inviting you to “Watch an Océ Press Go! Webinar”… at least the marketing department at Océ is hoping you’ve noticed it. But what exactly are these webinars and are they worth your time? I asked myself that very question and…

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Wide Format Means Big Opportunity…Selling it Right

Monday, June 6th, 2011

The wide format printing business is unquestionably a great business opportunity for commercial printers, quick printers, and graphic arts firms. You can still get an excellent profit margin if you produce good work, develop your customer account base, and deliver the goods reliably. Because the wide format digital printing market is also highly fragmented, there…

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A Direct Marketing Lesson from Dwight K. Schrute

Thursday, May 5th, 2011

By Liz Swanson If forced to watch only one show for the rest of my life, without a doubt, I would choose “The Office.” I love Michael’s eternal quest for love; I love Angela’s obsession with her cats; I love Creed’s sketchiness. I wish I was a Pam, but alas am probably closer to a…

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The Dark Side of Direct Mail

Thursday, April 28th, 2011

Recently, Boston.com posted an article about a direct mail campaign that went out to an unknown number of National Grid customers from HomeServe USA, an insurance company that sells coverage for furnace and plumbing repairs. Just read the comments to the article to get a sense of how duped some customers felt.

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Making Print Consistent with Online Experience? Priceless!

Tuesday, April 19th, 2011

I work at a company that is heavily focused on the online user experience for consumer and corporate identity risk management services – and I’m also a print guy. You might think that print wouldn’t be that important of a competency for us, but you would be wrong. Intersections Inc. (www.intersections.com) is recognized as the preferred partner of major financial institutions providing custom identity management solutions. Clients leverage Intersections’ identity management solutions, offered under their own privately branded labels.

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Obstacles of Digital Check Printing become “Everyday Non-Issues.”

Wednesday, March 30th, 2011

By David Smith In the past, and for many companies currently, check printing has been slow and expensive. Checks required special stocks, MICR printing – often on dedicated machines or slower mixed-use machines. When checks are only part of the mailing, this often means a separate matching step that further slows down the process. Ideally,…

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Graphic Arts Printing – What’s Workflow got to do with it?

Thursday, January 27th, 2011

If you’re a commercial printer looking to get your share of the growing digital opportunity, what’s workflow got to do with it? A lot, as it turns out. In fact, workflow can mean the difference between a print operation that’s rooted in the dark ages and one equipped to satisfy the expectations of 21st century customers. Can streamlined digital workflow help commercial printers survive – or better yet, thrive – in the second decade of the new millennium? Yes it can -and here’s how:

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Is workflow the key to surviving and thriving for today’s in-plants?

Thursday, December 2nd, 2010

Production print service providers face many challenges today, but in-plant operations arguably face even more. These guys are dealing with squeezed budgets and simultaneous pressure to grow print volumes, improve service levels, increase productivity and offer an ever-expanding suite of services like producing tabs, binding, transaction printing, fulfillment, direct mail, booklets, and security printing. If they can’t meet the corporate need, they don’t just have a bad year – they get lifted right out of the enterprise.

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Defining Workflow in Today’s Transaction Printing Environment

Thursday, October 28th, 2010

Every print job you can think of today has a workflow associated with it – specific tasks and processes that have to be managed and ideally, automated. Not surprisingly, workflow means different things to different people. Jobs flow differently in commercial print shops than they do in high-volume transactional data centers, direct mail houses, service bureaus or CRDs in enterprise environments. So their corresponding approaches to automating workflow are different as well.

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Digital Inkjet: The Paper Challenge

Monday, October 25th, 2010

By Jack Miller, Principal Consultant, Market-Intell In the world of digital print and paper, “nirvana” is a press that is capable of producing offset quality at a competitive cost on the same papers that printers use on their offset presses.  For the most part, coated and uncoated offset papers run reasonably well with toner-based digital laser printing,…

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Who told Franklin to “Go fly a kite?”

Wednesday, October 20th, 2010

By T. J. O’Hara    Remember me?  The industry heretic?  The guy who’s not willing to accept that fact that margin erosion can’t be overcome?  Heck, if you’ve read the political satire in my blog and books, you know that I even think our current political process can be fixed.  Talk about being an “eternal optimist!” …

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The Common Sense Czar on Printing: To Be or Not To Be. . .

Thursday, October 14th, 2010

By T. J.  O’Hara The Common Sense Czar  As an executive consultant, my second favorite Shakespearean line is “To be or not to be:  that is the question” … because it covers so much ground in the “hamlets” within which our businesses reside.  As a political satirist, my favorite line comes from King George, VI:  “The first…

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Personalization – not just for Direct Mail Anymore

Sunday, October 3rd, 2010

Orange County Printing (OCP), a Consolidated Graphics, Inc. (NYSE: CGX) company, has launched Forte Select, a line of personalized promotional gift and apparel items.   Unlike traditional promotional product providers, Forte Select enables users to create one-off pieces such as mugs, mouse pads, and t-shirts that are personalized with individuals’ names, images, or other custom content.   “We are…

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