Samples Are Sexy

Why not use a marketing tactic that works for your customers?

Some printing companies are sending printed samples of high-quality brochures, packaging and marketing materials to selected prospects. It is achieving some very worthwhile conversations for them. The arrival of the right piece of print can make the difference as to whether the prospect responds to a follow-up phone call or e-mail. Sometimes they will even pick up the phone themselves. Many prospects are keen to meet with the printing company to see more samples and find out more about what the printer can do for them.

It is easy to understand why. Think about how you feel if you receive a beautiful piece of print through the post. If a piece of print is carefully crafted, it stands out. It is proven that print drives results. According to, your prospect is 10-20% more likely to convert if they receive direct mail rather than e-mail. When it comes to selling presses, this can make a big difference to your results.

Let’s compare this to a more traditional approach

Many channel partners will send prospects and customers details about the features of new machines via e-mail. Let’s face it; a list of specifications is pretty dull. Receiving a business e-mail rarely triggers any positive emotions in the recipient.

If you want prospects to be excited about the new features of a machine, show them print. Let them see how new inks and finishes actually look like when they are printed. Send an example of a new product that can be produced by the machine. If the new feature is performance related, send them a newspaper with a headline that shouts about it. Or send a brochure that states how quick it was to produce. Print creates emotions. It’s the best way to get your prospects excited.

This tactic sometimes creates a strange result

Some printing companies have found that sending samples of creative print starts a conversation and gets them in front of prospects. But then something unexpected happens. The prospect decides not to order any of the exciting print that they asked to see. But instead, they award the printing company their standard print, even though they could source this cheaper elsewhere. The printing company has become a trusted partner, unlike the commodity price sellers.

We would expect the same result to happen for some buyers of digital printing presses. Sometimes the sexy samples will win the meeting. But the prize will be the sale of a more standard production press, possibly at a higher price than that of the competition.

It is easy to understand how this might happen

Sexy samples are a great way to stay front of mind. They start conversations. You will be the first point of contact when printing companies start looking for their next press. The sample may be the difference that wins you the sale.

Most importantly, you will be proving to printing companies that samples from the press that you sell will win them results as well.

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Tweet: Why samples sell and how to use them to start a conversation with your customers: via @XeroxPartners

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