A recurring theme at the half dozen or so digital print conferences that I've attended over the past year has been the need for marketing agencies to have a greater understanding of digital print's capabilities in order for it to gain greater buy-in with marketers.
Which is why it was nice to see such a large turnout from the agency side at QuantumDigital's Marketing Summit this week in Austin. Representatives from DraftFCB, Targetbase, Hawkeye, and DDB, among several others, were on hand. It was interesting to see that the people in attendance came from various departments within agencies – creative, print production, business development and the executive suite.
What I heard from these representatives is that they were there to learn more about digital print and variable data print with the goal of being able to talk authoritatively about these solutions with their bosses and clients. At least one group is considering partnering with a digital print provider – as well as other marketing services providers – in order to be able to offer more services as part of an integrated solution. Another individual was present to bone up on what's new in digital print as it relates to mail after spending time concentrating on other areas of print.
The presenters talked a lot about using Web portals for ordering marketing materials and the importance of social media. I really liked the solution from Text4CRM and QuantumDigital that brings together mobile marketing and digital print. It enables marketers to send out a personalized postcard directing recipients to text a keyword to a shortcode number for a special offer or more information.
It is more solutions like this that marry together newer technology such as mobile with print in an actionable way that will undoubtedly get both agencies and marketers excited about digital print's capabilities.