Thursday, July 2, 2009


The use of variable data printing, variable data email messaging and variable data internet communication makes personalization of the Internet possible.  Your company can connect with new prospects or existing customers by sending personalized messages that will drive contacts to a specific goal online.

Personalization may be the deciding factor on receiving a new client or satisfying an existing clients need to be personally contacted and reminded of your services and offerings.

What is a PURL and how can these benefit my business?

PURL is the acronym for Personal Uniform Recource Locator.  This is what it may look like:

Inserting a persons name in front or behind your company will drive people to a micro site that will personally greet them by name.  There are many events that need to "line up" to make the PURL a live web page that works.  

The most deciding factor on a campaign being a success is not the message, it's the list.  Lists are available with a selection of many demographics that will tailor the audience to your message.  If you have existing data on your previous clients you will have the greatest success targeting them for a new offer or advise.  The data manager at the vendor will configure your data base to accept the PURL assignment, determine which "fields" variable data will come from to load into the web page and do all the back round programming that makes a PURL so valuable. We'll get to that in a minute.   

There are responsibilities for you as well as the vendor that will be hosting and customizing the PURL campaign. Once you have your PURLs from the data manager, you need to hire a designer to produce a direct marketing piece, hire a web designer to design and implement a variable data PURL email message, contract a web designer to create Landing, Submittal and Thank you pages for the micro site and submit all this to the PURL vendor.  Of course you could visit and have all the work done seamlessly and avoid all the fuss.  Cheap plug:)

Once the personalization is created and the campaign started, the PURL begins to work for you. The real value of the PURL campaign is the ability to track your direct mail advertising and get real time notifications for events happening on the PURL site. The benefits detailed below should be included and insisted on when choosing a vendor for your PURL campaign.

  • Domain name with each campaign
  • Email campaign set up (if required)
  • Receive real time email notifications on every visit to the PURL Page with detailed information on who visited and how they arrived. (eblast or direct mail)
  • Receive real time email notifications detailing an event you would like to be notified about. (This could include contract siging, requests for more information, profile updates, clicks onto PDFs and clicks directing them to outside web sites)
  • Capture updated profile information in a “Change Log” file that will be used to update data base information accurately, without placing a single call.
  • Access tracking information online through you own password protected administration page. 
  • Download a complete history of event tracking as Excell files for sorting, evaluating and taking advantage of warm leads.
With all the above your campaign has the ingredients for success.  To see a live demo of how a PURL page loads and includes variable data please visit:
You won't be disapointed!