Get to Know Nahan’s Marketing Manager: A Q/A Session with Melissa Fransen

Author: Tracy Tougas, Account Executive

Keeping Nahan’s name and quality reputation popping up on Social Media, planning events, creating eye-catching and poignant external marketing materials, and helping to retain Nahan employees is just part of the short list of what Melissa Fransen does here at Nahan. She is a burst of positivity and is always working two steps ahead. I’ve had the opportunity to get to know Melissa and thought you would all enjoy getting to know her a bit too!

Marketing Extraordinaire

Melissa, why did you choose the marketing field?

I love to think differently. I love to create. I love to push boundaries and drive results. That is what I love about marketing and why I chose the career.

What is your favorite part about working at Nahan?

I can’t pick just one. First, and foremost, I love the people. The people at Nahan are truly outstanding and I’m thankful to be surrounded by great co-workers.

Secondly, since I love marketing, there is just something about seeing something come to life. Seeing a brand’s artwork go from a design to a beautifully crafted tangible marketing piece is something truly awesome. Day in and out I get to see what goes through the doors at Nahan, and it’s really something! I’m blown away with what we do. (Interested in seeing some of our work? Request a sample pack).

Tell us about one of your favorite Nahan capabilities?

I’m truly amazed at the capabilities of Variable Data Printing. I’ve been in the marketing field my entire career and before starting at Nahan a little over three years ago, to be honest, I didn’t know that technology like VDP even existed in print technology. It’s amazing how the power of data can be utilized to create a truly customized marketing piece. Instead of doing a campaign of 50,000 of the same exact artwork to 50,000 customers, you can do 50,000 customized unique pieces to 50,000 people and each one will be customized to that specific individual. I love data and the technology component of VDP. API integrations, CRM systems, and custom marketing programs get me excited since there is so much potential with it! 

Melissa Fransen with her husband.

What is the favorite project that you’d worked with in the last year?

I’d say it was our website launch.  We launched our new website in Sept. of last year and as anyone in the marketing field knows, it’s A LOT of fun and it is A LOT of work. I’m really proud of what the team accomplished and we worked with a fantastic partner to bring our vision to life! It was also really fun to discover some really amazing talent we have on our team from awesome photographers to fantastic writers and editors that are contributing to our blog. Check out our website!

On which social media platforms does Nahan appear?

We are on LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Follow us to stay in touch!

What do you like to do outside of work?

I love spending time in the outdoors! I like to fish with my husband Mark and we spend a lot of time with family and friends. We have large extended families and live an active life and I’m very thankful for that! There is always something or someone to celebrate. I enjoy traveling. I also like to play the piano and have played since I was six years old. I’ve really been enjoying teaching a few students of my own. With more time at home with the pandemic, I’ve been enjoying reading (which I haven’t done in a while), gardening, and planting flowers.

Melissa Fransen
Melissa Fransen with one of her great catches.

How has COVID-19 changed your role and the marketing Nahan is doing?

Over the past several years, we’ve had a big presence with conferences. Most of our largest conferences have been canceled and we’ll be participating in our first virtual conference this Fall. So, that has changed for us. Our social media presence has been growing, along with our followership, so we’ve been staying very active on our social media pages. We’ve ramped up our direct mail efforts since we are in the industry and we know it drives results. We’ve also kicked off an eNewsletter so we can stay in close contact with customers, job seekers, and more. Since we aren’t having client visits, doing in-person job fairs, and more, this helps us stay connected. (Interested in signing up for the eNewsletter? Sign up below in the footer of our web page).

Tell me something recent that you are proud of…

In 2019, I became a certified Social Media Strategist (SMS) with the NISM. I’m working on my CEU credits currently to keep up with my certification. With the marketing industry constantly changing, I think it’s important to continuously learn so I can stay at the top of my game. In the last 5 years, I’ve obtained this SMS certification and five HubSpot certifications.

I also enjoy volunteering and making others smile. I’ve participated in several volunteer activities over the last couple of years, including United Way volunteer events. Some of my favorites have included writing thank you letters to Veterans, an activity day at a local Nursing Home, and making tie-blankets for babies in the NICU.

Author: Tracy Tougas

Tracy works at Nahan as an Accounting Executive partnering with our National Sales Reps to build customer relationships and meet customer needs. She has been at Nahan 12+ years and another 2 back in the 90’s. In her spare time she enjoys traveling, gardening, hiking, cooking and spending time with friends and family.

Build a Dynamic Plan for Direct Mail

Are you familiar with the 40/40/20 rule of direct marketing? It states 40% of your campaign’s success is the result of list selection, 40% is because of your offer and 20% is based on creative. But what does that mean, exactly? Let’s break it down with some quick tips you’ll want to keep in mind for your next campaign.

 

Know Who You’re Talking To

Owning the right list is vital whether you’re trying to grow your audience, communicate with current customers or reach prospects you already know. Knowing your market allows you to nail down the tactics. You don’t talk to car salesman the same say you speak to the neighbor kid at her lemonade stand, so why waste words with a blanket message? Secure engagement and responses by tailoring your advert to interests, location and purchase history.

 

Seal the Deal

Now that you know your audience, it’s time to reel them in with a killer call to action. The second 40% is all about getting the reader to do something. Which sounds obvious, but you’d be shocked by how many mailers don’t inspire clear action. Do you want them to complete a survey? How about redeem a coupon? Lead the reader towards your goal with action verbs and explicit, easy-to-follow instructions. Don’t waste time and money on bland, generic messaging.

 

Get Creative

Creative may only be 20% of the rule, but it’s the cherry on top of your ROI-driving sundae. Think outside the box to boost your open rates and catch scanning eyes. One tip: make your mail lumpy. Including any item thicker than the envelope it comes in piques the reader’s interest and turns your ad into a prize. After all, who doesn’t love getting a gift?

See some examples of the 40/40/20 rule in action on our work samples page. Can you pick out the audience? Is the call to action clear? Are you attracted to the creative? Put these rules into practice and you’ll be a direct mail master in no time.