While the Internet has been making technological leaps and bounds, Print hasn’t quite rolled over and given up yet. What’s the best thing about Internet marketing? It can be personalized, which is a win-win situation for both the marketer and the consumer. Marketers already know what you’re interested in so they give you more of what you want.

Well, we’ve forgotten that direct mail has been doing this for years, and it’s pretty good at it too. Variable data printing just got sexy enough for even us web-heads. Imagine a piece (post card, brochure, or catalog) that could have customized images based on your profile. Now imagine that this piece could vary in page length and copy. Not just a word here or there, but entire formatted paragraphs. You can vary everything from the color of the type to the layout of a page. Variable type can even look like its been Photoshopped into an image.

Now imagine getting a marketing piece in the mail from a sports team that you have season tickets with, and your name is painted on the back of your seat in the stadium. Or getting a brochure from an auto dealership, with info and photos of the exact cars you test drove two days earlier. Or an invitation to a wine tasting with your name on the cork? Wikipedia, among others, claim, “The returns for variable printing vary from double the normal return at the basic level to 10-15 times the return for fully variable jobs.” And these pieces might just find their way onto office walls and refrigerators as well.

I’ve just completed a four-day seminar in how to set up and use some amazing VDP software called Pageflex. As we get this system going, I’ll keep you posted. In the meantime — check out what DirectSmile is doing. You won’t believe it until you see it.