Utilize Digital Channels to Personalize Physical Communications

Optimize your print communications by creating personalized, digital experiences.

Tue Apr 18 14:42:00 EDT 2017
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Despite a recent push toward paperless billing, a whopping 75 percent of consumers continue to receive printed bills and statements via physical mail. Physical communications are regular ongoing touchpoints with customers, where you can engage with them and make meaningful interactions.

If you’re sending out monthly invoices, that means you only have 12 touchpoints per year, so you need to make sure you’re making the most of these interactions. Using digital channels can help you extend that interaction, further engage with the customer and provide them with an interactive, relevant experience.

Customers want to see relevant, personalized information in the communications they receive. My mother recently received an informational message from her bank, describing how they were applying deposits and withdrawals to her account. But, because the bank used standard, generalized data, my mother struggled to understand the explanation. Had they referenced items that were more pertinent to her account, like vendors that she has used for past purchases, she would have had an easier time understanding, leading to a deeper, more engaging relationship with the bank.

By personalizing each piece of mail, you can enhance customer experience, improve client satisfaction, reduce costs and boost ROI. Here are couple ways to optimize your print communications by creating personalized, digital experiences.

Interactive Personalized Videos

Leverage customer data and predictive analytics to create interactive personalized videos. Videos are a great tool for delivering data and context, especially for complex documents, and help you forge a personal connection with your customer. For example, in my mother’s case, the bank could have pulled data from her account to make an interactive video. Then, the video could connect her directly to a call center or knowledge portal if she’s confused about anything.

QR Codes

QR codes are being used more and more in conjunction with print, for good reason. QR codes eliminate the need to manually enter a URL, so taking the next action is easier for the customer. Interactive videos can be delivered via QR codes, where a customer is provided with a bill explainer and connected with customer service representatives. Or, QR codes can direct customers to a call center and put them in a select queue, so they receive high quality, efficient service.

Augmented Reality

Online experiences can also be created through augmented reality (AR) tools, which merge mail with mobile technology. When a customer uses their phone to hover over an image on the mailpiece, they are taken to a mobile interaction or experience. For example, many banks leverage AR to provide customers with directions to the nearest ATM.

Whether it’s how to experience a new device you have to offer or how to configure a new product, AR brings a mailing to the next level. Think of the possibilities: With the use of AR, one standard envelope could hold include an entire product catalog or 3D demo. Not only is this engaging for the customer, using AR to display a catalog reduces costs, since you can avoid hefty mailings.

pURLs

Adding pURLs (personal URLs) to printed comms helps drive an online experience by directing recipients to a customized web page. These highly personalized pages can collate all of a customer’s relevant information and make everything available to them.

And last but not least, make sure your physical communications are readable and impactful. Adding color in the right places can help draw the customer’s attention to noteworthy information like payment amount or due date. Highlighting a payment due date may motivate customers who are typically slower to pay bills on time, and calling attention to the payment amount helps ensure that payments are made in full.

To learn more about how to optimize your print communications, come visit Pitney Bowes at Document Strategy Forum, booth #200, in Chicago, May 1-3. Or, join Pitney Bowes at the National Postal Forum in Baltimore, May 21-24, at booth #413.