Monthly Archives: March 2009


YouTube – Shift Happens UK Video

YouTube – Shift Happens UK.

It’s been around a while, but this UK version of Karl Fisch’s original ‘Did you Know?’ presentation is still pretty informative and does go along way to demonstrating just how fast things are moving these days.

By |March 27th, 2009|General|0 Comments

XMPie and the Missing Plug-in issue

I have seen several posts and blogs reference the error message that designers sometime get when they open up a document stating that?XMPBackEnd5.pln.InDesignPlugin?is missing.

This is caused when the XMPie uDirect or uCreate plug-in has been installed on the creator’s system and a document created and sent to another. Even if the XMPie plug-in is not used to personalise a document this issue can be created.

I recently asked Gal, from tthe R&D team about this and this is what he said
The problem that is experienced is a result of XMPie adding properties to certain components of the document. For example: A spread gets the property of whether it has a visibility ADOR or not. A box gets the property of whether it has text length handling (auto flow, copy fitting) and if so In what way.

The way this is implemented is by using the only technology available for this by Adobe which as a by-product forces that the properties are added to the document whether you actually place valid values or not (meaning whether you set them or not). If they are not set to specific values they simply get null values but still the properties are there. Since the properties are there taking the document and opening it in another InDesign installation provides a warning that there is no support for these properties i.e. the missing plug-in warning.
So, the answer here is not straight forward, and XMPie is talking to Adobe about this matter it would seem. Gal goes on to mention that they have seen this issue replicated in several other Adobe Plug-ins that make changes to the document in the same way; so it would seem that this is not solely an XMPie […]

By |March 25th, 2009|XMPie|5 Comments

Elixia recruited over 2,500 new members worth over €1.5 million in annual revenue using XMPie

When Wittusen & Jensen purchased XMPie back in 2007 one of the first things that they did was to create and run a self-promotional campaign talking about their new capabilities. This is something that I strongly suggest that ever provider in this field does; as the results can be lucrative.

One of the bites that W&J got from this campaign was from Elixia; a leading health and fitness chain in Northern Europe. With 30  locations and some 85,000 members.

Previous campaigns to attract new members to Elixia had not been successful to say the least – so with the help of W&J they set out a roadmap for a cross-media interactive campaign. Consisting of personalised postcards, Response URLs, and viral marketing tools they created a campaign that was both highly visual and effective. Existing Elixia members could earn as many as six months of free membership by simply recruiting new members through the campaign!
“It would be really hard to do this using four or five software packages that don’t communicate. The way XMPie enables campaigns to be managed from a single dashboard is brilliant.”

The results were staggering; over 27% of existing members who received the postcards entered the interactive stages of the campaign. Over 2,500 new members were recruited with an annual membership of €1.5 million!

These successes helped W&J develop a competitive advantage and grow its digital business by 30% in 2008; which is impressive in these times.

You can download this, and other case studies from the XMPie website (, under the Case Studies section; or click here.

Do you have an XMPie success story that you would like to share? If so, get in contact.
Full disclosure: At the time of writing this article the author was employed by […]

By |March 25th, 2009|Personalised Communications, XMPie|0 Comments

Do you suffer from Information Overload Syndrome?

It’s a nice story, storyboarded well, with a nice presentation. Viral videos seem to be all the rage at the moment; and it’s great to see Xerox using it effectively to target such a worthy cause ;-)

This personalised video and website is a good example of what can be done.

Take a look at to start the experience.

However what seems consistently done by many that adopt this strategy of viral marketing is that they miss the bigger opportunity.

What do I mean? Well think about if…

I get my personalisd RURL from a friend ( which brings me to my landing page and the video.
I watch the video, chuckle and then I refer it to another friend.
I get some further information (the sales pitch).
I carry on my day…

Then what?
Did I get a follow-up email? No. And what happens if I go back to the my personalised URL? I get them same experience all over again!

What I should get is relevant communications!

If i have watched the video once via my RURL then if I visit it again the campaign should recognise the fact that I

want to refer another friend,
what more information or 
want to watch it again!

It’s the ground-hog syndrome of cross media communications! An effectively interactive campaign should recognise where in the cycle a recipient is and provide relevant communications – not assume that I want the same thing every time.

Am I alone in this, or are personalised communications in danger of ‘dumbing down’ the recipient if not done properly?

By |March 10th, 2009|Personalised Communications|0 Comments

Jubels on Tour Campaign recognised by the PODi

, Jubels Communication over in Amsterdam have proven; once again that in many cases it’s a simple, well thought out campaign that gets the best results. Many companies think that you need a grand and complex concept when producing a multi-channel communications piece; with vast quantities of data.

This is a relative myth. In the vast majority of cases you just need simple, clean, yet attention grabbing creative backed by a simple concept and supported by the correct data.

This is what Jubels Communication have done with their Jubels On Tour Campaign; a self-promotional cross-media campaign which was recognised by the XMPie’s Users Group back in 2008 and which has now made it into the PODi Case Study Collection.

Jubels created a very personal piece that was sent to their existing customers and prospects. The printed piece pulled the recipient into a personalised site, which allowed them to select from various personalised images; but also allowed them to update their own contact details and preferences.

This easy step of using simple, potentially out-of-date or unclean data to provide a customer with the ability provide additional or updated information is a huge value-add. It effectively allows a mechanism for allowing the customer to update their information for you. If companies employ this strategy for their first campaign then they can start to ensure that the data they are using; for subsequent campaigns is correct and valid.

The results for this campaign? Over 20% of Jubels customer base and prospects visited their personalised website and updated their information!

Do you have a Cross Media success story to share? If so, please get in touch.

By |March 6th, 2009|Personalised Communications, XMPie|0 Comments

Is television a dying media?

With today’s announcements of ITV slashing 600 jobs in the UK as their profits down 41% year on year; is there a bigger issue here. Sure there could be a proportion of this announcement that is related to the global economy; but is there another element?

I have long lost count of the vast number of TV channels that are being broadcast. With the majority of these relying on advertising revenue to fund new programmes and turnover – there was got to be a huge number of programmes that are fighting over the number of potential advertisers.

That ‘pot’ of potential advertisers has to also be getting smaller; as marketers and creatives look at more profitable ways to spend their reduced marketing budgets!

With less marketing spend and less advertising revenue for traditional ‘passive’ media; such as TV then I suspect we might see a ‘cull’ in TV channels. This can only be a good things in my opinion. Hopefully the opportunity  here is for the passive medias to find new ways to embrace interactive and online communities.

With that said, it is a worrying outcome that ITV is then selling off the Friends Reunited online presence – surely would it not make more sense look at how that can be used to create greater audiences and loyalty?

What’s your thoughts? Comments are always welcome…

By |March 4th, 2009|Blogging|1 Comment

I finally understand the Credit Crisis!

This beautiful video from Jonathan Jarvis finally helps visual how we all got into this mess in the first place. Great!

The Crisis of Credit Visualized from Jonathan Jarvis on Vimeo.

By |March 4th, 2009|Blogging|0 Comments