"The goal is a much higher level of trust, which is really key in this environment," says Valerie Valente, SVP and publishing director for Rodale Custom Publishing. "Companies that can bring consumers along the trust continuum have been very successful, and that's what this discipline really brings to bear."
12 | DMNEWS | April 6, 2009 | www.dmnews.com Feature Custom By Lauren Bell “Retention or loyalty efforts are : If you went out and spent $70,000 enhanced by building community, and on a single good, wouldn’t you want you build community online,” points some special attention and recogni- out Marcie Avram, associate publisher tion? Luxury car company Lexus has of marketing and business develop- evolution long known that its customers appreci- ment at Rodale Custom Publishing. ate engagement, as evidenced by the 2002 launch of a global custom pub- The increase in channels available lishing campaign. But the evolution to custom publishers and their clients of Lexus’ brand marketing strategy also calls for more work on the pub- — which has grown to include a Web lisher’s end, particularly in the realm of site, MSN portal, e-mail newsletters, database marketing and segmentation. video stories, travelogues for TiVo, No longer is a single magazine printed streaming video for mobile phones, out and mailed to all existing clients. and serialized ﬁction, all full of custom Now, different segments of a consumer content designed for Lexus buyers — is Brand marketers are turning to custom publishing base receive different messages, often a perfect illustration of the evolution of custom publishing as a discipline. more than ever, as the channel expands beyond created in different media. “Segmentation, I think, is a major “Twenty years ago there was this notion that custom publications were print magazines to integrated content that serves trend, which ﬁts with direct market- ing very well,” explains Waller. “The a nice thing to have, but now we can identify that they are really powerful to increase customer loyalty growth is in focusing on parts of the database where you can apply different marketing tools that not only increase models and different content approach- brand resonance within the audience es to different segments. What started but can move consumers to action,” off as talking to customers through cus- says Simon Kelly, COO of Story tom content has become much more Worldwide, which works with Lexus sophisticated and targeted.” on its custom publishing efforts. He adds that segmentation, though it More than 1.1 million current cus- takes an investment of time and money tomers receive issues of Lexus, a quar- up front, pays off in the long run, by terly magazine, and more than 80% creating more efﬁcient and effective of the Lexus owner base says they feel marketing programs. more valued as a result of receiving Sophisticated measuring techniques the publication, Kelly reports. Fifteen also play a big role in custom publish- percent report actually having bought a ing’s growing popularity with CMOs vehicle as a result of reading Lexus. and marketers. Because the pieces are But it’s not just the magazine that so targeted and because their distribu- is pushing the Lexus brand — it’s the tion is highly controlled, it’s easy for breadth of custom content that Lexus marketers to gauge their success by customers receive. measuring such metrics as ROI, churn “Ultimately, marketing is publish- rates and loyalty ratings. In today’s ing,” Kelly points out. “Marketing in tight economy, proving that a market- the post-advertising age, whether on
Pages to are hidden for
"Custom evolution"Please download to view full document