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Kodak customers discuss diversification, growth strategies

Mar 15, 2011 12:00 AM

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A panel of Kodak customers’ recent roundtable discussion in San Diego covered the need for print service providers to continuously embrace change and expand services to differentiate and grow their businesses.

Participating companies included H.O.T. Printing & Graphics, a full-service commercial printing, graphics and mailing company; DST Output, LLC, one of the largest global statement and billing output providers; RT Associates, a marketing logistics partner that helps clients manage the entire workflow of their marketing campaign; and The Bureau, a marketing manufacturing company.

In discussing the process of diversifying and changing their business, each participant agreed that a necessary first step involves thoroughly examining their operation, determining resources and technologies they need to put in place to support their business plan.

“The readiness assessment conducted through [Kodak’s] MarketMover program helped us realize that we needed to alter our skill sets in several areas. We had all these pieces sitting out there that weren’t effectively tied together,” said Bob Radzis, Chief Customer Officer, RT Associates.

“We also looked at the skills of our workforce and how we’re organized as a company,” said Dana Johnston, v.p. of eBusiness development, DST Output. “We are looking at creating ‘Centers of Excellence’ to bring together people with new areas of expertise.”

The panelists agreed that, once new services are in place, marketing those capabilities requires new knowledge and approaches.

“One of the biggest challenges in becoming a marketing services provider lies in continuously educating ourselves and our customers about things like the latest campaign components and how to measure ROI,” said Greg Shapiro, president, H.O.T. Printing & Graphics. “Our sales team attends MarketMover webinars, then shares information with agencies and customers through lunch-and-learns and similar events. We’ve also seen success with multimedia campaigns that promote our capabilities and expertise.”

“One of the first things we learned was how to sell a campaign or service versus selling a job. That was critical to becoming an advisor to our customers on their marketing campaigns,” added Radzis.

“As an industry, we need to take every opportunity to remind marketers about how print can make their campaigns effective and we need to take every opportunity to demonstrate to customers that we are about print and a whole lot more,” said John Henderson, Director of Digital Marketing Services and Technology, The Bureau.

The expanded MarketMover Business Advantage Solutions includes a suite of consultancy services to help print providers assess, integrate, optimize, and market their businesses. See