Variable Imaging

Written by Jeff Harrison
February 20, 2014

Direct mail that introduces visual detail as part of the campaign has been proven to be much more effective than text alone. It’s something like a 12% success rate, vs. 1% for traditional direct mail.

Recently, I got a letter from Air Miles, a loyalty card program, and a 3 things caught my eye.

First, the cover of the piece. It had some info for me – in color: Not too unusual, as CorelDRAW can do stuff like this already through regular print merging.

The next part had a photo of the branch Manager in my area, and a greeting from him. This would be data that would change – on the fly – during the print run. It would be based possibly on which store I frequent based on purchase history, or by postal code of the store relative to where I live. (I didn’t include a copy for this blog post.)

The next component was the most interesting to me: The food store keeps track of my favorite purchases. Custom coupons – with photos of those highly specific products – were tailor-made to my personal inclinations.

So… they “got me”. I tend to buy these things ongoing anyway, but the “deal” was something I couldn’t resist. Some people are nervous about what data is held about them by businesses. I personally don’t mind – if it leads to me getting coming out ahead somehow.

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Jeff Harrison

Jeff Harrison is a media "Jack-of-all-trades", familiar with most of the major media applications on the Windows platform. Whether it's 2D/print, 3D, audio, video, or web-related - he's working on mastering everything that comes his way. He's a past Alpha and Beta tester for Corel, and has instructed students from all over the world. He runs the popular site, the #1 place for CorelDRAW macros. Also check out his youtube page, and his gallery at

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