Becoming the Amazon of print

For years, Staples print services had grown organically across its various business units. By 2013, a patch-work of overlapping services and brands existed that were costly to maintain and failed to capitalize on or support the parent brand. A meaningful change was needed to seize the opportunity presented by a highly fractured print market. The creative team participated in a complete restructuring of the Copy & Print business by uniting its retail, online and contract businesses with an entirely new value proposition and redefining its print offering. 

Key Insight: Make me look good

Collaborating with Staples’ Customer Insights group, the team reviewed dozens of research documents and met with front-line sales associates to quickly gain a clear understanding of what customers were seeking in a print vendor. Two central themes emerged that were common to small business, mid-market and enterprise level customers: First, the quality of the printing influenced how people judged their work. Second, the desire for a seamless process to meet all their print needs – with no room for errors.

Untapped expertise  

A common pain-point for all print customers was the need to work with multiple vendors to meet all their needs. Juggling all these relationships was time-consuming and opened the door for errors to occur. Research indicated that many of these customers were already using at least one of Staples print services but where unaware of its’ full capabilities. Furthermore, Staples associates were given high marks for their knowledge and cited as a chief reason for repeat purchases. This proved to be a powerful insight, driving changes to the organizational structure as well as how the services are marketed. 

A trusted advisor  

Building upon their role as a trusted advisor, we set about expanding how Staples’ customers use their services to meet all their print needs. A new mission statement was crafted to encapsulate the direction of the business. Personas were established to represent small business, mid-market and enterprise level customers. A three-tiered benefit statement was written for each print service, reflecting the “expert” positioning and addressing the specific needs of each of the three customer personas. Journey maps were created to show how a customer might utilize the various services at different times. Opportunities were identified to improve the transitions between the services, making it a seamless experience for the customer.   

Millions of projects printed perfectly

With the new value proposition defined, it was time to put the theory into practice. Bringing our insights to life, copy was written with a sense of empathy and an emphasis on the simplicity of the solution Staples provided. Because seeing is believing, an emphasis was placed on using photography to demonstrate how Staples print products addressed the real-world challenges faced by customers. 

With an organization as large as Staples, there are many opportunities to get word out.

  • In-store experience 
    • Signage
    • Associate uniforms 
    • Product displays 
  • Support materials for salesforce:  
    • Sell sheets and folders
    • Brochures
    • Tradeshow signage 
  • Website
  • Email 
  • Video 
  • Infographics