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Xerox 1:1 Lab Helps Generate Higher Response Rates, More Visitor Revenue for Maine Tourism Using Personalized Direct Marketing


LAS VEGAS -- Given the tremendous onslaught of direct mail that land in consumers’ mailboxes every day, businesses face a formidable challenge in ensuring their messages stand out.

One way is to use personalization. A recent test by the Maine Office of Tourism, using the Xerox Corporation (NYSE: XRX) 1:1 Lab - a variable print testing ground - demonstrated that a relevant personalized mailing generated a 24.1 percent improvement in the response rate over a traditional generic or static piece. The Maine Office of Tourism projected that the personalized mailing also generated 23.4 percent more revenue from state visitors than the control generic group.

The 1:1 Lab analyzes a customer’s traditional static direct-marketing campaign and compares the results against one that uses personalized, one-to-one messaging based on demographic data and printed on a Xerox iGen3™ Digital Production Press. This helps print providers and their clients develop customized, more relevant direct marketing programs produced with digital printing that grab attention and increase response rates.

Long-time Xerox customer DMM, a direct marketing solutions provider based in Scarborough, Maine, proposed the test opportunity to its client, the Maine Office of Tourism.

“With tourism being the second largest revenue-generating industry in the state, it is vital for Maine’s tourism department to more effectively market itself to prospective visitors around the world,” said Theresa Cloutier, senior vice president of marketing, DMM. “Reaching the right audience with more relevant information that addresses consumers’ needs in a personalized way gives the state a competitive edge. This test program validated the power of personalized mailings.”

For the project, the Xerox 1:1 lab devised a test to compare response rates and business results from two different mailings that were sent to visitors who went to the tourism Web site. The control direct mail campaign consisted of a 245-page traditional travel planner pre-printed on offset with a separate response postcard that was sent to 8,335 prospective visitors. The test program included the same planner, plus a printed-on-demand personalized pocket guide based on specific visitor information collected from the tourism department’s Web site and a personalized postcard, sent to another 8,335 prospects. For the personalized piece there were more than 145,000 different variations possible, including photographs, activities, events, specific regions and seasons.

“The 1:1 Lab has helped other businesses - including Reader’s Digest Canada, Staples Business Depot, Heritage Funds Inc. and the Conference Board of Canada - create successful communication campaigns that cut through the clutter in a world of information overload and generate increased customer responses resulting in a greater return on investment,” said Shelley Sweeney, vice president of Xerox’s direct mail and service bureau segment. “Because the lab absorbs programming and printing costs, participants see their results first-hand, without the capital investment associated with an initial one-to-one campaign launch.”

The 1:1 Lab, started in 2004, is based at the Xerox Research Centre of Canada, one of Xerox’s most advanced research centers in the world for digital printing. The lab is outfitted with equipment and software, including the Xerox iGen3. To be eligible to participate in the 1:1 Lab, companies must be Xerox graphic communications customers within the print-for-pay segment and use Xerox production-level equipment.

Xerox is showcasing DMM and 16 other of its leading direct marketing customers in its booth (No. 927) at this week’s largest gathering of marketers in the world, the Direct Marketing Association annual conference and exhibition, taking place Oct. 11 - 16 in Las Vegas.


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