A Second Helping of Thanksgiving

December 2, 2013


By Doug Traxler, Chief Development Officer and Executive Vice President, Sales and Marketing

I am fresh from a long Thanksgiving weekend spent with family and friends, and hope that you also enjoyed time with people you care about. The WebbMason team continues to give thanks this morning. I am not just referring to the leftover turkey sandwiches many of us packed for lunch today. We are starting the new week with some great news: WebbMason once again topped the charts of Print Solutions magazine’s annual Leading Distributors issue in several categories based on 2012 revenue. Print Solutions is published by the Print Services and Distribution Association (PSDA), an industry group whose members comprise a broad network of supply chain partners representing approximately 1,000 companies with more than $5 billion in combined annual sales. In other words, PSDA represents the best of the best in the commercial printing and marketing services industry.

WebbMason placed first in the Commercial Printing category and is the second largest distributor across all categories. WebbMason also finished among the Top 10 in the Marketing and Creative Services and Technology Services categories. You can access the 2013 Leading Distributors issue of Print Solutions here.

Among all PSDA members nationwide, WebbMason is the:

– #1 Seller of Commercial Printing
Print Solutions Aug 13 cover

– #2 Distributor across all categories

– #2 Seller of Direct Mail

– #2 Seller of Labels and Tags

– #2 Seller of Promotional Products

– #2 Seller of Traditional Products

– #5 Seller of Marketing and Creative Services

– #9 Seller of Technology Services

WebbMason is proud to once again secure sales leadership positions in every applicable category. Given the number and quality of fellow PSDA members considered for the annual survey, WebbMason’s performance is a significant accomplishment. Our success is the result of hard work from every member of the WebbMason team; clients who truly partner with us; and our commitment to innovation in services, products and technology.

WebbMason’s investments over the past several years succeeded in transforming the company into a complete marketing services and technology provider. Interactive services and our marketing management software – MarketingBench – are WebbMason’s fastest growing offerings. Adoption by traditional print and promo clients has been terrific. We are their comprehensive, multichannel marketing resource. And interactive services such as web design and development have been a major point of entry for new clients.

In closing, if you are a WebbMason client, thank you for your business; if you are a colleague, thank you for your contributions; if you are a partner, thank you for helping us become the top distributor in the country. And thanks to everyone for reading.

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PSDA Rankings Affirm WebbMason’s Continuing Market Leadership

October 1, 2012

WebbMason once again topped the charts of Print Solutions magazine annual rankings in several categories based on 2011 revenue. The magazine is published by the Print Services and Distribution Association (PSDA), an industry group whose members comprise a broad network of supply chain partners representing nearly 1,000 companies with combined annual revenue of more than $5 billion in combined annual sales.

Among PSDA nearly 1,000 members nationwide, WebbMason is:

  • The #1 Seller of Commercial Printing
  • The #2 Distributor across all categories with $92.5M in sales
  • The #2 Seller of Labels and Tags
  • The #3 Seller of Promotional Products
  • The #3 Seller of Paper-Based Forms

While we’re thrilled to be among the best of the best, what’s truly important are the reasons that underlie WebbMason’s success: customer-centricity, innovation, and value.

The Marketing Innovation Center™ @ WebbMason is a perfect example of market leadership and the company’s investment in people, processes and technology to bring to market top-quality products and services that are surpassed only by the value they deliver.

The Marketing Innovation Center™ @ WebbMason

As an integrated marketing solutions and services company, WebbMason understands that today’s marketing channels have their own set of rules. Each one demands special technology and expertise. Those discrepancies make it harder for marketers to develop solutions across disciplines. The Marketing Innovation Center @ WebbMason defies this trend. It breaks down barriers between marketing silos to facilitate understanding and synchronicity across them. The employees who workin the Marketing Innovation Center @ WebbMason drive our integrated marketing and web strategies effort, as we continually aim to become an extension of our clients’ marketing teams. The business cards found in this space say “WebbMason,” but these employees really wear the same color jerseys as our clients.

Another proof point of our innovation is MarketingBench™, WebbMason’s on-demand digital marketing management system, allows sales and marketing teams, local and remote employees, channel partners, franchisees and business partners to have fast and easy access to an entire brand library – or only appropriate portions. MarketingBench streamlines the acquisition, customization, and delivery of promo, print, and other materials and is used by 1.5 million users at more than 800 companies to streamline ordering, centralize procurement, track marketing and print materials in real time, and create documents online 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Perhaps the most important number of all is 315. That’s the number of dedicated WebbMason employees working in offices across the country. At the end of the day, it’s their expertise and commitment that WebbMason a success by ensuring that our clients are successful. Yay Team, WebbMason!

 

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DocBuilder Tips & Tricks Series: Naming with Purpose

May 21, 2012

Sara’s Tips and Tricks for WebbMason DocBuilder, third of five entries.

WM DocBuilder allows you to upload files, select the ones you need, and then rearrange them in the order you want them to print using up and down arrows.  However, if you have a large project with a large number of print files, a little extra work on the front-end will save you some time.  Before you upload your files, rename them with a number in the beginning of the file name corresponding to the order in which it should print (i.e. 1_Executive Summary, 2_Contract, 3.1_ExhibitA, 3.2_Exhibit B, etc.).  When the files are added to a new document, it will be super-easy to put them in the right order!

I hope you find the information I’ve shared useful.  If you have any questions related to WebbMason DocBuilder, I’m here to help!  Please email them to DocBuilder@webbmason.com

Sara E. Post
Product Marketing Manager


View from the Inside: docBuilder Marketer Talks about Her First Product Rollout Experience

August 23, 2011

I consider myself a marketing professional. At WebbMason, I collaborate with a team of talented individuals to promote products/services and support a national sales team. I face the same challenges as any other marketing professional – maintaining the integrity of a brand, meeting budget goals, responding to the needs of very talented and slightly demanding sales people (I’m allowed to say that, I used to be one) – and the overall need to do more with less. There’s less time to be proactive, more pressure to improve ROI, fewer resources at my disposal, and higher expectations for greater results.

But I have to admit, I love it!

In early 2011, I accepted the role of Product Marketing Manager with WebbMason, after six years with the company. Since then my energy has been focused on launching the newest feature of WebbMason’s MarketingBench platform, a web-to-print application, later named “docBuilder”. In May, docBuilder entered its “beta” phase, which in essence meant that our development team felt that it was ready to be taken for a spin, and that I and a select group of customers were allowed to test-drive it. In terms of performance, it handled well, but we had to take a look under the hood from time to time and make adjustments. The feedback from the beta customers was extremely helpful in identifying areas for improvement and applications for use. By July we had an on-demand document printing technology that we could take to market.

It has been an incredible experience to champion a product, begin to see it take shape, have it be embraced by our sales team for its potential and eventually adopted by our customers for its value. Our first product rollout was to The College Board, an organization that helps to prepare and connect students to higher education. Fiona Yung, assistant director, stated, “From my first experience with docBuilder, I recognized its value. With the easy-to-use interface, I was able to build my documents… in a virtual environment.” What does she mean “build” a document, you ask?

I will spare you the sales pitch, but in a nutshell, docBuilder gives the marketing professional like myself the ability to create, print and distribute professional documents – sales proposals, account reviews, marketing collateral, the dreaded RFP (think the stuff you have to run to-and-from the expensive retail copy shop in the rain for) – on-the-fly, without ever leaving one’s desk. Best of all, it saves my colleagues and I lots of time and precious budget dollars. If you would like to learn more about how WebbMason docBuilder is giving organizations a head start with an all-in-one solution for controlling the cost and quality of their outsourced printing, visit http://wmdocbuilder.com/pr.

For a demonstration of its capabilities, check out the video below:

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Founded in 1989, WebbMason is one of the fastest-growing print and brand management service companies in the United States, helping marketing departments and their internal and external partners save money and streamline processes through a winning combination of industry expertise, exceptional print supply chain partners and technological innovation. Headquartered in Hunt Valley, Maryland, WebbMason has 20 sales offices throughout the United States.


The Best-Case-Scenario for Social Media

August 19, 2011

A few humor blogs are passing around a story today about a hungry businessman who received a free porterhouse for taking the time to tweet a joke. In case you missed it, the short version is that businessman and Twitter icon, Peter Shankman, posted a tweet to Morton’s restaurant before getting on a flight that would delay his dinner. Shankman said he was starving, and asked Morton’s to meet him at the destination airport with a steak. For almost any other restaurant, that would be the end of the story, but Morton’s was different.

Looking for my driver, I saw my name, waved to him, and started walking to the door of EWR [Newark Airport], like I’d done hundreds of times before.

“Um, Mr. Shankman,” he said.

I turned around.

“There’s a surprise for you here.”

I turned to see that the driver was standing next to someone else, who I just assumed was another driver he was talking to. Then I noticed the “someone else” was in a tuxedo.

And he was carrying a Morton’s bag.

Someone at Morton’s had seen Shankman’s tweet, and sent a driver 24 miles to Newark Airport to deliver a porterhouse steak, colossal shrimp, potatoes, bread, and silverware.

A few minutes late, and the whole thing would have been a waste of time, but as it happened, Morton’s walked away with huge publicity…..for the cost of a single dinner.

This is the way that social media should work, but the reality is often very different. It was only a happy set of coincidences that led to the “miraculous” story above. Someone managing Morton’s social media happened to notice Shankman’s tweet, and a restaurant happened to be within driving distance of the airport. Unless you are willing to pay someone to monitor your incoming tweets 24-hours-a-day, your business will not likely see a similar event, and in any case, it is too late to be the viral sensation Morton’s was.

However, it isn’t too late to make sure that your social media efforts are designed for the purpose of listening to your customers, and responding to them. Social media is as much about responses as it is about marketing, and too many brands seem to forget that. Think simple: post a poll asking for your followers’ favorite menu items, and then put those on special the following week. Ask what coupons your customers want to see, and then deliver them. Showing your customers that you care about what they are saying will do wonders for your brand, and you don’t even need to drive thirty minutes to hand-deliver a porterhouse steak.

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Founded in 1989, WebbMason is one of the fastest-growing print and brand management service companies in the United States, helping marketing departments and their internal and external partners save money and streamline processes through a winning combination of industry expertise, exceptional print supply chain partners and technological innovation. Headquartered in Hunt Valley, Maryland, WebbMason has 20 sales offices throughout the United States.


How Starbucks Finally Won at Viral Marketing

August 12, 2011

Viral marketing campaigns are the holy grail of internet advertising. A campaign that takes off on its own, spreading organically from consumer to consumer, with little to no effort from its creator. After a history of notoriously clumsy attempts, Starbucks may have finally knocked one out of the park.

Earlier this week, news sites started promoting an already popular story: Mobile App Consultant Jonathan Stark released an image of his Starbucks digital payment card on his blog. The idea was that anyone that wanted coffee could use his card, free of charge, and that good Samaritans could make donations to refill it, should it go empty. The stunt was described as a “social experiment,” and was intended to show that there was still good in humanity, despite outward appearances.

Early cynics called Stark out, already smelling the tell-tale signs of forced viral marketing. Stark denied any connection with Starbucks coffee, and the public happily ran wild with the story. Now, one determined blogger has unearthed the ugly and more realistic truth. It seems that Mr. Stark’s employer lists (or rather, listed, since it has recently been removed) Starbucks as a client company. Is it coincidental? Perhaps, but most feel that the curtain has been thrown back, and Starbucks has been caught red-handed.

Whether or not Jonathon Stark is actually involved, the campaign has been a huge success. The card built up a balance of $3,651 from the starting balance of $30 (As of this posting, the card account has been emptied). A popular Twitter feed was set up to monitor the crowd-sourced card’s balance, and plenty of people enjoyed free Starbucks coffee. What happens now, remains to be seen, but few can doubt that Starbucks is laughing all the way to the bank.

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Founded in 1989, WebbMason is one of the fastest-growing print and brand management service companies in the United States, helping marketing departments and their internal and external partners save money and streamline processes through a winning combination of industry expertise, exceptional print supply chain partners and technological innovation. Headquartered in Hunt Valley, Maryland, WebbMason has 20 sales offices throughout the United States.


Are Your QR Codes All Bark and No Bite?

August 5, 2011

Over the past year, the marketing industry has fallen head-over-heels for QR codes. We have done a piece or two about them in the past, but it is time to take a more critical look at this newest campaign must-have.Time Magazine Cover, From Mashable.com

Many marketers seem to throw QR on everything, without logic or reason, resulting in too many companies including the codes in marketing materials in which they are completely unnecessary or out of place. This Mashable article details five examples of truly baffling logic, where it is obvious that the QR code is included just because it can be.

It is true that, when handled well, a QR code can become a convenient call to action that bridges web and print campaigns. However, marketers need to start taking the time to question if the included code is adding any value to the campaign. There is little available real estate on a piece of print marketing, and an unsightly black-and-white square can easily detract from an otherwise successful campaign without providing any value in return.

Marketers need to ask 5 big questions when considering QR codes in any campaign:

  1. Does this code add anything to my campaign that simple text or a URL cannot achieve?
  2. Will this code be located in a place/way that will make it easy and inviting for consumers to use?
  3. Is the code linking to something that provides a reward to the consumer? Will they appreciate the time they spent visiting the linked content?
  4. Are the targeted consumers likely to have smart phones, and Wi-Fi or 3G access, when they see the code?
  5. How much of my campaign am I willing to hide from those consumers that do not have a smart phone?

At the most basic level, marketers should be asking, “Is this code a waste of time for me, my target audience, or the brand I am promoting?”

Some marketers are probably only including QR codes on their campaigns so that they can add another bullet point to their portfolios, and that may be fine for the lowest denominator. Those that really want to be putting together truly memorable and successful campaigns, though, will take the time to question the value of the marketing industry’s new toy.

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Founded in 1989, WebbMason is one of the fastest-growing print and brand management service companies in the United States, helping marketing departments and their internal and external partners save money and streamline processes through a winning combination of industry expertise, exceptional print supply chain partners and technological innovation. Headquartered in Hunt Valley, Maryland, WebbMason has 20 sales offices throughout the United States.


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