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Five print and mail professional associations worth watching

by Candice Russell | July 12, 2012 | 2 Comments

Looking to advance your career in the print and mail industry?  We recently completed an industry survey to better understand how our customers learn more about the production print and mail industry, including what type of information they look for and where they go to get that information. What surprised me about the survey results was the relatively low percentage of respondents who belonged to professional organizations or followed industry thought leadership organizations.

With this in mind I wanted to share a list of “five organizations that we love”, any of which are a great resource for learning more about our industry and advancing your career.

5 Leading Professional Organizations that can Help you Move to the Top

1. Xplor International – If you are an IT or print professional who is looking for new ideas on how to make your customer communications more personalized, valuable and secure, then you should take a look at Xplor. This worldwide association is for anyone who creates, modifies, and delivers customized customer communications. Its many member benefits include a bi-weekly newsletter, Webinars and events.

2. Imaging Network Group – Looking for best practices to apply to your print and mail operation? The Imaging Network Group (INg) is composed of many of the largest and most successful service bureaus within North America. Members attend multiple meetings throughout the year, where they discuss key business and technical issues directly affecting their companies and share best practices on running and growing their businesses.

3. Mailing and Fulfillment Service Association (MFSA) – With over 500 member companies, MFSA is a true ground level association that provides multiple local and regional meeting opportunities for print and mail operations of all sizes. Member benefits include extensive postal information, periodicals, surveys and manuals that are unique to the industry, networking opportunity, and educational programs.

4. The Direct Marketing Association (DMA) – If you are a Service Bureau whose clients include marketers, then the DMA is a great resource for learning about the new capabilities that your clients will soon expect. The DMA is a leading global association for organizations using and supporting multichannel direct marketing tools and techniques, and following the DMA on LinkedIn or through other channels is a great way to understand what is top of mind for marketers. In fact, we think so highly of the DMA that we are joining them to co-sponsor the new Personal Connections ECHO award for marketers who have driven engagement and loyalty through personalized communications. If you want to enter you will need to hurry. The deadline to submit an entry is Monday, August 16.

5. National Association of Presort Mailers (NAPM) – If you are interested in all things postal—and if you want to have an influence on future postal policies—then NAPM is the organization for you. NAPM is regularly asked to provide opinions and recommendations to the USPS on current and proposed regulations. Member benefits include frequent communications and news releases, inclusion in NAPM discussions on postal policy, and networking opportunities at its annual meeting.

I think all of these organizations are great! And depending upon your area of interest, they can each be a valuable resource for you. I know this because they made a big difference for me, first as I was learning about the print and mail industry, and now as I work to stay abreast of current trends and ideas. They also provide a forum for understanding the real concerns of print and mail organizations of all sizes.

What about you? Which organizations do you belong to or find helpful in your line of work?


Blogger’s Note: Great news! The deadline to submit your entry for the Personal Connections ECHO Award has been extended to Thursday, July 26, 2012.  For more information visit www.echoconnections.org

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  • Candice Russell

    Hi Michael. Thank you for your comment, and I hope that you are doing well. In response to your question, some of these groups are global (DMA) and some are focused on North America (Ing, MFSA, NAPM). I like your idea of highlighting different regions of the world and I will check with my international peers to get their input. Thanks again!

  • Michael Calderwood

    Good blog, Candice - solid useful information, fine summary of the individual org’s value.  This should be embedded in all PB web sites, giving customers an easy way to better engage with each other across the wide range of physical and digital communications paths.  Other than the aptly named XPLOR International, are these groups global in scope?  Is there a follow-up to this week’s post that will highlight similar groups in different regions of the world?  How about outer space?