Think Outside the Insurance Form
A varied product mix creates account longevity
The results of a recent survey of insurance companies conducted by In-Plant Graphics magazine should come as no surprise. Not only are in-house printing facilities on the rise, but equipment capabilities are increasing, and product categories are expanding. Respondents indicated that they're creating their own annual reports, brochures, stationery, forms, calendars, catalogs, directories, direct mail pieces, folders, magazines, manuals, newsletters and point-of-purchase displays.
So, what are forms distributors to do? For starters, Nino Cuttone, director of sales and marketing for Wauconda, Illinois-based Continental Imaging Products (CIP), suggested that they change tactics and turn the situation to their advantage by getting in on a $23 billion-a-year industry: toner cartridges.
"Insurance companies eat toner cartridges like popcorn," said Cuttone. "They definitely fit the profile of the ideal prospect, which is any business that prints large volumes of repetitive material and requires huge amounts of information from forms and reports."
Distributors simply need to ask prospects basic sales questions and find out what type of equipment they have, what they use and how often. "It's a very easy sell," observed Cuttone. "Everyone has printers, and they already know what consumables they need."
End-users either utilize OEM (original equipment manufacturer) products, or what Cuttone refers to as alternative, generic products. If OEM or branded products are currently in use, distributors have an opportunity to educate prospects about the benefits of compatible alternative products, and propose a conversion that can save anywhere from 30 percent to 50 percent.
CIP is STMC (Standardized Test Methods Committee)-compliant, a certification that is awarded by the International Imaging Technology Council. "This is the golden seal of approval," explained Cuttone, "equivalent to having a UL tag on an appliance. It guarantees that the same strictly regulated processes and formulas that the OEMs use in making their products have been followed."