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Try a little social media

Jun 1, 2011 12:00 AM

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I don't remember when I first met Jim David, vice president of marketing for Ussery Printing. But I admire his Facebook feed.

David's posts don't push the Dallas-area printer's capabilities. He often has a funny graphic arts related news item to share or an interesting statistic on direct mail's effectiveness.

“I am an information junkie,” David says of his online activities. “I try to [read and post] efficiently, usually twice day.”

Noting that LinkedIn currently has more than 100 million registered users around the world, David proudly reports he was among the first 120,000 to sign up.

Social media helps keep Ussery Printing on its customers' radars. “Almost all of the 350 people who follow us on Facebook are local,” David says. “Face time is still important, but we've also seen direct benefits from Facebook. People have called us after seeing a post. One customer says, ‘If you want to reach me quickly, use Facebook.’”

David agrees with industry pundit Dr. Joe Webb that “print is a strategic marketing choice that provides predictable ROI.”

“When used correctly, print is an amazingly effective way to promote other marketing channels,” David says. “That's why you see Google and Facebook using targeted print campaigns to lure companies to advertise on their platforms. They have determined print is the best vehicle to reach a specific person.”

David, who joined Ussery eight years ago, was a marketer long before becoming a printer. “We don't say we aren't a printer, we just explain how we bring print into the marketing mix,” he says. “Sometimes print isn't the answer and sometimes it is, the client just didn't realize that.”

Don't be afraid to explore social media. “A lot of printers are scared they'll make a mistake,” says David. “My advice is to get all the information you can. Try some things. If they don't work, try another course.”

As some of us may remember, Wednesday is Prince Spaghetti Day. This just in: Tuesday, Sept. 13 is Marketing Day at Graph Expo here in Chicago. The Chicago chapter of the American Marketing Assn. will host a series of educational sessions for marketers and printers. Hope to see you in the new Marketing Pavillion!

Katherine O'Brien, editor in chief

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