Category Archives: Content Marketing



How much does it cost to automate factsheets? 🧐

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How much does fact sheet automation cost? What's the best approach?

In a budget-conscious financial services industry, marketing spend is a top concern.  That’s why, when we meet new firms looking to invest in automating their factsheet production, one of the first questions marketers ask is, ‘How much will factsheet automation it cost?’.  Before digging into their business requirements, our dreaded answer is: It depends. There are many factors to be considered. Firms take many approaches, and one size does NOT fit all.

Among the major dependencies affecting the cost of automating your marketing documents are:

  • Complexity of your designs
  • Number of templates and variations you have
  • Complexity of your data
  • Extent of your language requirements
  • Amount of flexibility you have with requirements
  • Number of documents to be produced

The complexity of your factsheets and flexibility of your firm’s operating model will ultimately determine the cost for automating them during production. To give you a better idea of what this means, let’s look at a few common scenarios. These are actual case studies of companies who have implemented factsheet automation recently with Synthesis and how much it cost them.Read More

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Print is Dead, Long Live Print!

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The value of high quality print literature and printed fact sheets Print Is Dead

I’ve been in the computer-driven publishing industry my entire working life. For better or worse, that’s going on 30 years and six firms worth of experience building and selling systems to support the print (or print-like) communications needs of large businesses selling or supporting high-value goods and services. I’ve worked with Airlines, Pharmaceuticals, Auto Parts, Reference Publishers, Military, and Financial business. All have significant data-and-rules driven content publishing needs, including well-designed print artifacts. Supporting publishing in the financial services world makes up a majority of this experience, but we gain wisdom by understanding similarities and differences between multiple business sectors and markets.

For 87.3% of my long and illustrious career in supporting print communications, people have taken the position that Print is Dead… or soon will be. While there are specific examples and versions of this narrative that are true, I’m here to talk today about where and why it is not true!

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The Scaling Problem in Investment Management Marketing

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How to Scale Investment Management Marketing

I had conversations this week with two new prospective investment management clients. Each expressed a “scaling problem” with marketing efforts as being their chief reason for looking into document and data automation.

I very much like that phrase. It’s straight out of my pitchbook on how a solution like Synthesis solves problems with scaling investment management marketing.  I usually define a scaling problem as:

The point in time in which either the number of documents, users, staff required, or variety of documents to meet the communication needs has passed some tipping point.

My takeaway from these two conversations is quite interesting. Although each firm was experiencing valid issues, the firm profiles and the scope of their work was vastly different. The key to efficient and profitable growth is scalability.Read More

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What is your ROI on producing marketing content?

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ROI on Marketing Content

 

It’s easy to underestimate what it costs to run your marketing operations. For asset managers, producing content is not an easy task. The materials are data-heavy, constantly changing, and usually go through several rounds of review. Creating a streamlined process is critical to realizing a return on investment. But how do you measure it?

There are three steps to building a solid ROI calculation, and the first step is to understand your true organizational production costs. Very few people know how to really measure this. Most of the time, managers simply look at their departmental head-count (FTE) cost and estimate what percentage of their time goes into updating and distributing content and literature. This broad-brush approach would seem to capture the costs well but often results in a gross underestimation of the true costs.  A full accounting should cover direct labor costs, managerial labor costs, opportunity costs, and error and risk-related costs.

We’ve had two clients undertake a full and detailed Six Sigma cost analysis of their baseline costs and risks associated with manual or semi-automated literature production. The results were staggering.
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