Cool ways to use variable data printing to improve your marketing results

Marketing today is all about personalization. With the amount of data collected every day about people and their lifestyles, habits, and purchases, you can market to an individual so specific it may be downright creepy.

Yet many marketers have not gone beyond the simple personalization of “Dear First Name” in many of their efforts. There are so many elements that can be customized. For example, did you know images can be printed variably, too? The postcard templates below can use up to 11 different variable data elements for customized direct mail marketing.


Some industries are more advanced than others in their use of data for personalized marketing. Here are three more cool ways variable data printing is being used today:

1. Customize the offer

Casinos have a lot of data in house about how much money is spent at their locations. They use this information to personalize future offers to encourage repeats visitors. Using variable data printing, they can make sure they are offering an appropriate incentive for each player's level of loyalty. Ho-Chunk Gaming uses this strategy when mailing monthly offers to its players club.



2. Speak their language

Are you marketing to more than just English speakers? Since Hy Cite operates in North and South America, it uses variable data printing to deliver loyalty cards with incentives to its independent sales reps in both English and Spanish across five different product lines.

3. Get more donations

It's a best practice for nonprofit fundraisers to personalize the donation ask for any giving campaign based on the last donation received from an individual. By using data from previous donations, you can create custom donation reply cards that ask for increasing amounts.

Smart fundraisers create “ask string tables” like this example below to create personalized donation letters and reply cards:

Last Amount Given Ask 1 Ask 2 Ask 3
$0-25 $100 $50 $25
$26-50 $100 $75 $50
$51-75 $150 $100 $75
$76-100 $150 $125 $100
$101-150 $250 $200 $150
$151-200 $300 $250 $200


Maeghan Nicholson is the marketing manager at Suttle-Straus.

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