Avoid the In-plant Tipping Point
As World Wide Public Sector Industry Marketing Manager at Xerox, I have been getting requests to present to commercial printers who want to seek business from the public sector market segment. This may sound strange since my role at Xerox is dedicated to the health and growth of public sector in-plants. However, in this tough economy, you can understand that commercial printers are aggressively looking for any new revenue opportunity. What surprised me during my discussions with these commercial printers, was the fact they all have targeted higher education as one of their growth areas.
Case in point was a meeting I had with a Washington, D.C.-area commercial printer. The CEO brought the entire leadership team to Rochester, N.Y., for a day-long strategy session on how Xerox can help them expand into new market segments, one being higher education. The CEO really understood the value of knowing your customer's business needs, the power of marketing and how to create effective business/marketing plans.
This particular printer had already laid out a very strong business plan detailing how his company can demonstrate value to the higher-education market segment by addressing critical application needs. So far, this printer had approached seven higher-education customers and was successful on all seven encounters in getting business from the admissions, alumni or foundation development departments.
Focusing on Strategic Objectives
Why was this company successful? It did extensive research on each university's strategic goals and objectives. From this information, it showed how a personalized/targeted campaign (print and non-print), focused on a particular university strategic objective, could help the university achieve its goal. This approach was so successful that it got the printer an audience with the appropriate decision makers within the targeted departments.
Needless to say, I was very impressed, and I must say somewhat concerned. The company offered a very strong and compelling value proposition as to why the university should consider doing business with it. What is even more interesting, the company does not have an internal design group. For complex applications such as this, it partners with an outside design firm.