Managing Sales Collateral

Having sales people manage print collateral is messy
A client was recently describing her job and the problems she was having managing her time. She and her team of five other sales reps generate leads by presenting seminars to 15-30 prospects almost daily. There are five different specialized presentations.
For each seminar she customizes and prints out a dozen or so pages of other documents with information specific to the seminar. She collects the appropriate standard corporate brochures for the meeting. She then gathers tchotchkes and other appropriate items and assembles everything into a folder for each seminar participant.
There are five reps in one region alone repeating this work – and there are multiple regions across the country. This inefficiency sabotages business goals in several ways:

  • The Sales reps are spending valuable time doing mundane tasks like customizing and printing documents and assembling documents into folders.
  • The sales reps need to deliver the materials to the seminar locations. Depending on the location and number of attendees this can be inconvenient or cause significant logistics problems.
  • Print and shipping costs cannot be managed since the sales reps overbuy materials so they don’t run out. There’s also no way to ensure current versions of materials are being used.
  • Corporate branding is inconsistent as individual sales reps manage documents. Messaging is modified and corporate colors are not maintained as documents are printed on low quality printers that aren’t color calibrated. Outdated materials stored in the garage or underneath the bed are often used because they are on hand.
  • New rollouts cannot be managed efficiently as there is no way to know how much inventory the sales reps have. New information might be released too early, and stale information might be used well beyond its useful life.
  • Legal problems can arise if critical information is omitted or edited.

Print Management: A Better Way

After learning of these problems we proposed the following solution that allows our customer to better manage their printing:

  • Storing standard corporate marketing collateral and tchotchkes in our warehouse.
  • Create Web-to-print templates for the customized documents that allow only certain content items to be customized.
  • Develop an online ordering portal that allows the rep to quickly choose the items needed for a presentation:
    • select the type of seminar from one of the five options
    • the number of attendees
    • information for the customized printing options (attendee names, sales rep contact info, graphics)
    • event location and date needed for delivery of the seminar materials
  • We deliver or ship the presentation materials to the event venue on the desired date.

In a matter of minutes the client can log in to her customized online ordering portal, enters all the required information, and order the materials for the seminar. The customized material is then digitally printed, combined with standard corporate collateral, and assembled for each seminar participant.

Benefits of the Print Management Solution

Print on demand and online fulfillment systems normally solve a number of customer problems. For this client the benefits include:

Increase Revenue

The sales force effectiveness is increased as they have more time to spend on strategic activities. Your sales reps have more time to spend selling instead of managing their own mini print shop, warehouse and fulfillment center.

Control Inventory

Inventory is maintained in a centralized location, significantly reducing overproduction and allowing you to manage the release of updated collateral.

Corporate Branding is Protected

Maintain messaging, logo color consistency and placement, and paper finishes. Keep the message consistent from seminar to seminar.

Total Control Over Printing Costs

Ensure that money spent on collateral gets into the hands of prospective clients – in good condition. Remove the hidden costs of having sales people editing, printing, and kitting sales presentation materials. Manage your collateral inventory levels and print in the most cost effective way for each item.

Legal concerns are mitigated

Strict control over what can be modified in a document and consistent collateral at each presentation reduces the chance for legal issues to arise.

Contact us if any of these problems sound familiar. Let’s talk.

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