Great Lakes Integrated Wins 54 Awards In 2017 Print Excellence Competition

Great Lakes Integrated (GLI), a Marketing Execution company comprised of industry leading professionals whom deliver award winning print, advanced marketing software and State-of-the-Art fulfillment and distribution services, is proud to announce it was recently awarded fifty-four (54) 2017 Print Excellence Awards from the Printing Industries of Ohio – N. Kentucky.

According to James Schultz, Chairman, President and CEO of GLI, “We are honored to have received these Print Excellence Awards. A big thank you goes out to our customers for entrusting us with their most discriminating projects. Also, the team of professionals at GLI does a fantastic job of producing award winning print. While GLI provides different channel options for its customer’s today, print still is and will continue to be a powerful way to communicate.”

Printing Industries Association President, Jim Cunningham stated how impressed this year’s judges were with the overall quality of all of the entries. “Ken and Jeff are experienced judges and printers whose combined expertise spans more than 50 years in print. Yet, even they were impressed with our members’ incredible work. It’s easy in today’s fast paced world to just get the job done, but our Association members continue to demonstrate the pride and dedication to their craft that has made Ohio and Northern Kentucky printers some of the best in the world!”

Each year, Printing Industries of Ohio • N.Kentucky holds its Print Excellence Awards Competition to recognize Ohio and northern Kentucky printers who have demonstrated excellence in 35 categories. This year member companies submitted close to 400 printed pieces and two out-of-state expert judges ranked them in a regional competition. This year’s judges were Ken Eberhart, Merrick Printing Company; and Jeff Ekstein, Willow Printing.

Each of the Gold award winners in the regional competition are entered in an association-wide competition for Best of Category and Best of Show prizes that will be awarded in September at the 2017 Grand Ceremony, held in Columbus, Ohio.

Great Lakes Integrated won the following awards:

14 Gold Awards
16 Silver Awards
24 Bronze Awards

About Printing Industries of Ohio – N. Kentucky

Printing Industries of Ohio • N.Kentucky serves over 300 commercial printing companies and suppliers to the industry in its service area. The Association provides a broad range of products and services to its membership, including workers’ compensation and product discounts. Printing Industries of Ohio • N.Kentucky is an affiliate of the national Printing Industries of America, the largest graphic arts association in the world. For complete information on Printing Industries of Ohio • N.Kentucky and Printing Industries of America, please visit

Qualitative Data Vs. Quantitative Data: Do You Know the Difference?

When it comes to personalized marketing, whether in print or email, there are two types of data: quantitative and qualitative.

Quantitative data is data that you can put numbers on—household income, ZIP Code, number of children. We often call these demographics. Qualitative data is data that you cannot put numbers on, such as preferences and behavior. We often call these psychographics.

Marketers have become used to using quantitative data to speak more personally and relevantly to customers. Customers in this household income bracket get these offers. Customers in that household income bracket get those. Customers with elementary school age children get information on Product A. Customers with high school age children get information on Product B.

Qualitative data can seem more challenging than quantitative data, but it can be even more rewarding. This is because, while we can make general statements about certain demographic groups, it’s limited. Just because someone is a homeowner doesn’t mean they need roofing services, for example. Conversely, people who receive Trail Runner magazine are likely to be interested in similar types of outdoor running gear even if they have different ages and household incomes.

This is why marketers are increasingly using both quantitative and qualitative data to inform their marketing strategies. For example, a manufacturer of outdoor running gear might start with lists of people who read Trail Runner and similar magazines, then sub-segment offers based on other factors, such as income or geographic region.

So when it comes to creating targeted and personalized direct mail and email campaigns, think in terms of data that can be put into numbers and data that cannot. Then, most importantly, how they go together.

Need help? Please reach out to your account executive and if you don’t have an account executive please reach out to Jason Schultz at 216-634-5117 or

Rethink Ink on Paper in a Digital World

The New Year is the perfect time to rethink your print marketing strategy, revamp your messaging, and refresh your brand. This requires an understanding of the role traditional ink on paper plays in a time when technology adoption and digital delivery are reshaping marketing and customer engagement.

  1. Invest in customer retention. We all know that it costs less to keep the customers you have than to capture new ones, so keep your customers engaged with a consistent multichannel marketing plan. Maybe you’ve abandoned a print newsletter for an e-version, but your email is getting lost in the inbox and anti-spam legislation is creating new challenges for deliverability. Mailing a newsletter, particularly one that uses variable data to deliver a personalized message, is a great way to keep your company top of mind.
  2. Get to the point. Your customers have more choices and less time than ever before. Rewrite your copy to tell consumers why your company is the only real choice. Change rambling copy into a powerful, focused message.
  3. Be the customer. When you take a step back, are you engaging customers at the right time through the right channels? The way content will be created, delivered, and consumed in 2017 isn’t the same as it was only a few years ago. Is it worth your prospect’s time to follow you on Facebook or Twitter? When they scan the QR Code on your direct mail piece, are they landing on a page with a specific call to action?
  4. Freshen up. If you’re anticipating a change in management, introducing a new product or service, or celebrating a significant business milestone, consider a brand refresh. With slight revisions to your branding elements and positioning, you can preserve your brand’s existing equity while infusing new energy into your offerings.

Need help navigating the increasingly complex world of print marketing? Let us help you get 2017 off to a profitable start!



CLEVELAND, October 19, 2016 — Great Lakes Integrated (GLI), headquartered here, announces the appointment of Scot D. Adkins as the company’s new President and Chief Operating Officer.

Mr. Adkins is a long-time veteran of the printing and packaging industry according to Mr. James R. Schultz, Chairman of the Board and CEO of GLI. “Scot brings a wealth of printing knowledge and management expertise to our company and to our broad range of regional, national and international clients. I have known Scot for many years through our involvement in various professional printing organizations, and he is ideally suited to lead GLI’s day-to-day operations going forward. We look forward to his contributions,” he says.

Mr. Schultz explains that as the entire marketing industry is continually changing, Great Lakes Integrated has evolved into a multi-channel marketing execution company to serve clients’ needs, with an emphasis on marketing technology, fulfillment services, and print, mobile, email and web production.

Mr. Adkins steps into this new role at GLI, ready to deliver multi-channel solutions, using his strong background of senior management leadership. He was most recently President/CEO for Rohrer Corporation in Wadsworth, Ohio, from 2003 to 2016, a multi-plant packaging company producing high visibility consumer packaging in North America.

From 2002 to 2003, he was Vice President, Commercial Sales at St. Ives in Cleveland, a company providing commercial printing services across the United States. From 2000 to 2002, Mr. Adkins served as Vice President of Membership & Marketing for the trade association, Printing Industries of America, Northern Kentucky and Ohio. Prior to that, he was Operations Manager at Rohrich Corporation in Akron, Ohio, from 1990 to 2000, a premium quality commercial printing company.

Mr. Adkins attended the Rochester Institute of Technology, in Rochester, New York, where he received a B.A. in Industrial Management/Printing Management, and an A.S. in Applied Science Technology. He also received additional coursework at University of Michigan Executive Education, and Kent State University – The Corporate University.

Great Lakes Integrated is a Marketing Execution company comprised of industry leading professionals whom deliver award winning print, advanced marketing software and State-of-the-Art fulfillment and distribution services.

5 Keys to a Successful Event Marketing Campaign

The event marketing definition is a wide-ranging one, but at its core, event marketing is an effective way to humanize your business through a number of proven social and promotional tactics.

While there are many flashy event marketing ideas from large-scale businesses, you don’t need to be a Fortune 500 company to run a successful event marketing campaign.

With some careful planning and foresight, you’ll soon be making brand-focused impressions on future customers.

  1. Know Your Customer

    As one of the cardinal rules of business, this tip should come as no surprise. There’s a reason why commercials targeting the elderly regularly reinforce the concept of security and toy commercials tend to take place in a world free of adults.

    These commercials have such a clear understanding of their customers that they’re able to accurately pinpoint their demographics’ worldview.

    Just like any advertising opportunity, your event marketing ideas should be built upon a fundamental understanding of who your customer is and what they want.

    Take, for instance, Great Lakes Integrated’s Allen Theater fundraising campaign.

    To be able to restore the historic Allen Theater for Cleveland State University’s theater department, wealthy donors were needed to cover the costs. So to help encourage donations, GLI’s campaign stressed the importance of the past glory and future possibilities of the venue. This insightful choice was a perfect fit for the target group, as affluent individuals are often highly interested in the concept of legacy.

  2. Tailor to the Event

    Directly related to knowing your customer is the importance of knowing your event. The tactics you’d use at a trade show marketing event versus a fair, concert or sporting event should be very different and any change in locale should bring with it a change in approach.

    While at a social event or entertainment venue, remember that your company is essentially a guest in the customer’s world. Be very mindful of not only bringing marketing materials your customer is likely to enjoy, but also making an effort to connect your product or business as closely as possible to the location.

    The best way to go about this is looking for cross-promotional opportunities. For example, when the Disney film Big Hero Six debuted, the company promoted the film at marathons and half-marathons with a large, eye-catching inflatable balloon of its robot character Baymax.

    A marathon was a logical choice of venue since the character is a medical assistant who endorses healthy living. And while this is indeed one of the “flashy” ideas discussed earlier, the central conceit is still sound and is what you should strive for while integrating your brand with an event.

  3. Think “Free and Useful”

    As mentioned in the previous section, making sure your event marketing materials are of interest to your potential customers is vital. To leave a lasting impression, you’ll want to abide by the philosophy of “free and useful.”

    “Free” should go without saying, since the concept instantly grabs attention, but on its own it’s not enough. All too often marketing materials such as buttons, stickers and posters leave potential customers cold as these materials inherently value the brand over the customer. You don’t want someone walking away from your booth thinking, “What am I going to do with this?”

    It’s for this reason that the usefulness of free materials is so important. Politicians know this, which is why every election season you’ll find yourself the new recipient of pens, pencils, calendars and notepads. Keychains, water bottles and hats are other items with utility far beyond a single event and should be staples of your promotional tool bag.

    Great Lakes Integrated’s approach to the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo is a good example of this. Along with their welcome kits supplying promotional hats, T-shirts and tote bags, they also included toy forklifts – a terrific way to entice both children and parents to attend the rodeo well into the future.

  4. Get Creative

    If you want to get the most out of your event marketing opportunities, you need to get creative. Not only do customers react positively to free and useful promotional materials, but they also respond well to interesting and fun activities.

    For more experienced marketers or those with greater capital at their disposal, these activities can range from utilizing interactive displays to sponsoring local art shows to organizing flash mobs.

    But deep pockets aren’t a requirement for creativity, and often limitations, financial or otherwise, produce the most creative solutions. Games, trivia contests and drawings are cheap and effective ways to attract attention at an event and can be very engaging for your customers.

  5. Connect

    If there’s one point you should internalize above all others at a marketing event, it’s the importance of connecting to your customer.

    While many techniques to attract customers are mostly passive and one-directional (a commercial, Internet ad, billboard, etc.), event marketing opportunities allow the customer to interact with your business first-hand, potentially leaving a more lasting impression.

    Creative activities, free and useful promotional materials, and a tailored marketing campaign are all vital techniques, but your efforts will be wasted without a positive connection to the person in front of you. The customer is key, and if you build outwardly from that notion, your event should be a complete success.

The Best Printing Services for Pittsburgh Companies


Whether your company’s goal is to sell more products, raise funds or promote an event, you need a solid, strategic marketing plan to achieve it. You also need to do whatever you can to differentiate yourself from the competition.

This is especially important if your business is located in a large and competitive market such as Pittsburgh. So in order to achieve your goals, your marketing campaign needs to have a strong foundation, which begins with excellent print materials.

High-Quality Pittsburgh Printing

While some will try to make you believe that print is a dying medium with the continued evolution of technology, print is actually more important than ever before.

Combined with other marketing techniques, print will help your campaign get the results you want.

At Great Lakes Integrated, we offer only the highest quality printed materials in the industry. Since the 1930’s, we have been a leader in printing technology, offering both traditional and unique, cutting-edge techniques. Our knowledge and expertise allows us to provide our customers with the most innovative and impeccable prints.

Pittsburgh’s Choice for Large Format Printing and More

As an industry leader, we offer a variety of printing services, including our large format printing for Pittsburgh companies.

Our large format printing machines have the same exceptional speed, flexibility and color vibrancy as our other machines, but they produce larger prints that are ideal for trade shows and events.

Some of our other print capabilities include:

Combined with our premedia, bindery and special finishing services as well, we can help you create the very best marketing materials from concept to execution.

To learn more about our Pittsburgh printing services, and what we can accomplish for your company, be sure to contact Great Lakes Integrated today.

5 Ways Our Digital Asset Management Tool Can Help Your Business

Do you face challenges when it comes to locating proper logos, images, audio files, video files or entire documents? If you do, you are not alone. Great Lakes Integrated’s (GLI) online digital asset management system can help alleviate the issues associated with all of your brand building assets.

Some of the ways GLI’s online digital asset management system can help are the following:

  • No more lost digital assets used to build and promote your organization
  • Greater efficiency in creating new materials
  • Brand protection since only the most recent approved assets can be utilized
  • Greater ease of sharing digital assets with key stakeholders
  • Greater ease of updates to digital assets

Take our online digital asset management system a step further and add our online document management tools to the functionality. Not only can you manage individual digital assets, but entire documents as well. This gives you the ability to manage documents as a whole, and also manage and utilize the individual assets that make up the documents. Our systems are robust, intuitive and built according to your business rules.

Please do not hesitate to reach out to your account executive if you have any questions or would like to learn more. If you do not have an account executive, please contact Jason Schultz at 216-634-5117 or

Council & Partnership

As a marketer, myself, and a person that deals with marketing customers on a daily basis, there are many avenues to utilize and take. What it comes down to is defining clear objectives based on your goals and your budget. Just because something is new and it claims to be the next best thing since sliced bread, it does not necessarily mean it fits within your marketing mix or budget.

It boils down to utilizing the correct channels and having the proper message to either create awareness and/or a call to action. Planning is the key, and it is not a singular process. You need to include key stakeholders within your organization to determine what your overall marketing initiatives will become; based on what you want to achieve.

Great Lakes Integrated understands this and has the products, services, technology and people to help you execute your marketing initiatives from beginning to end. Please look to us for council and partnership when developing your plans and marketing initiatives, and bring us into the conversation early. We can provide unique insight based on the experts we have that specialize in print, fulfillment, technology solutions and multi-channel applications.

Whether you are thinking about a complex multi-channel campaign that may include print, email, mobile and personalized landing pages with robust analytics or a direct marketing campaign that targets prospects with direct mail and email, we are here to help. Please do not hesitate to reach out to your account executive, and if you do not have an account executive please call or email me direct 216-634-5117 or

Jason Schultz
Vice President – Marketing

Fall into the Season

While the weather and leaves are turning outside, here at Great Lakes Integrated, we’re turning our thoughts toward that which we are most thankful for. We are truly blessed with amazing clients who push us to keep growing and learning, and equally amazing employees who are always eager to explore new solutions. Read on to see more thankful thoughts from individuals at Great Lakes Integrated or visit our Facebook page to share what you’re grateful for!

I’m equally thankful (grateful actually) to the creators of Baileys and to the person who discovered it rocks in coffee.

Amy, Accounting


I am thankful the mothership left Karen Hollish as my cubemate.

Annette, aka The Hobbit – GLDirect


I’m thankful to live in a geography of changing seasons so we can experience the freshness of spring, sultry summer days, crisp cool and colorful autumn evenings and the opportunity to snuggle in with loved ones for a long, cold winter.

I’m thankful for my good health; for my lovely daughter, Morgan; for my kind, generous and loving son, Kenneth and for my beautiful, energetic daughter, Alexandra. They make my life complete.

Oh – and for our four-legged lovies: Balloo, Baghera, Ra, Zo, Sola, Luna, Zeus, Xena, Carbon, Zinc, Lithium and Foster! 

And for all of you, my Great Lakes family.

Carrie – Premedia


I’m thankful for my family and Netflix.

Christina – IT


  • I’m thankful for my 2 fabulous kids and the 5 wonderful grandkids they gave us!
  • I’m grateful for all my family and friends.
  • I’m grateful that we had the opportunity to enjoy some of the beautiful colors this fall.
Cindy – IT


I am thankful for the weather and the changing leaves, to wear sweaters again and snuggle up by a fire. I love the smell and the sound of the leaves blowing in the wind. I am thankful I get to see different seasons although I wish winter was shorter and most of all I am thankful for my rugrats.

Deanna – Accounting


I’m thankful for my awesome Harley Davidson, family, my repaired oven roasted motorcycle boots, my car and Keegan Kosempa.

Glenn – Production


After the first Ebola patient stepped on U.S soil, my family was forced to make some important changes. My older sister works at Case Western University researching Alzheimer disease. She used to take the RTA train to University Circle but was encouraged to drive so she wouldn’t have to be in contact with anybody. It is natural for researchers or healthcare workers to be much more sensitive than other people.

Having only two cars among three people forced me into trying my lifelong dream, bicycling to work. I decided to start out at the halfway point where my sister could drop me off and also have access to a major highway, I-90 East. Though I did not ride the entire 15.3 miles from home to work, I did successfully bicycle 7.3 miles in 33 minutes, burning 600 calories. I can see how this will affect both my health and the environment positively. I still have some time before the weather gets bad and I would like to try bicycling to work as much as possible. The Ebola crisis actually gave me the opportunity to live a different and better lifestyle!!

Joon – IT


I am thankful that I work with such a fun and supportive crew. Especially “The Girls” – couldn’t do it every day without them.

Karen – GLDirect


I am thankful for the men and women that are serving and, have served in the Armed Forces to protect our freedoms.

Kathy – Accounting


I feel like I am always being reminded that life can change in an instant. Those twists and turns in life highlight all the wonderful things I sometimes find myself taking for granted. I feel blessed to have my family, especially my son and the time to spend with them. I am grateful that my family and I are in relatively good health. I feel very fortunate to have a lot of good people in my life. It is in moments of stress and hardship that show me how important good people are and reminds me to always try to be a good person myself. I am thankful that I have a warm place to sleep, a roof over my head and food in my kitchen because there are so many around the world that can’t say the same. I am happy I have the ability to find my silver linings in nearly every scenario. A positive life outlook can change everything. And last but not least, that everything is flavored pumpkin spice in the fall because pumpkin flavored everything makes me extremely happy. 😉

Kim – IT


I am thankful for all the wonderful people in my world, they make life worth wild.

Mandie – Accounting


Fall is my favorite season! I love the way the leaves turn such vibrant colors – all the yellows, oranges, and reds seem almost like fire. The sky is beautiful, especially when the thick clouds look as though a painter painted them. I really love walking outside on nights when it’s clear enough to see many stars, yet just a few patchy clouds partially obstruct the view. It fascinates me that such beauty comes in a season of dying, right before the barrenness of winter.

Then again, there isn’t much about creation that doesn’t fascinate me. The whole universe is so intricate – God must truly be infinitely creative.

I don’t know that there’s anything I’m not thankful for. I’m most thankful for God and His Grace that never runs out and pursues me relentlessly. I’m thankful for my family and being able to be more present with them and spend more time with them lately. I’m thankful for friends that love me unconditionally and go out of their way to help me.  I’m thankful for the way the people at my church – even the ones who hardly know me – care about me and pray for me and help me to do hard things. Which brings me to my concert, which I’m also extremely grateful for. I have so many fears about performing my music, and a woman at my church has graciously done everything she could to make this as easy for me as possible. I’m grateful for the opportunity that picking out songs and working on accompaniments has provided me to look back over the past few years and see what God has done and is doing in my life, and how He’s been Faithful in the midst of some crazy circumstances. I’m grateful for my sponsored kids who materially seem to have so little, yet spiritually have so much. I’m grateful for their sweet letters and all that they teach me about God and life and priorities and love. I’m grateful for changing seasons and pizza and rice cakes and blue skies and green grass and life and breath and . . . yeah, everything. Even the hard stuff. There’s been a lot of that this year, but God has been so Good in the midst of and through all of it, and I am so grateful.

Mary – IT


I’m thankful I have 3 sons that run fast, have great manners, collect lots of halloween candy and bring it home to me & Athena to check to make sure it’s good to eat. I tell them “Yep, this looks good to eat but I should make sure on a couple of pieces!”

Matt – Premedia


I am grateful for all things Orange!! Orange is a color of adventure which inspires and creates enthusiasm. It is optimistic and sociable and suggests affordability. Here are a few of my favorite things:

  • Fall Leaves
  • Bonfires
  • Pumpkins
  • Carrots
  • Pumpkin Pie
  • Orange Freezes
  • Fireballs
  • My Texas Longhorns jersey (from my days living in Houston)
  • Sunrises and Sunsets
  • Nemo
Michelle – IT


Today, I am particularly thankful for sunny days, starry nights, whomever keeps filling the Halloween candy bowl in the office and my Netflix account.

Morgan – IT


I am thankful for my wonderful staff and The Hobbit.

Robert, aka Gandalf – CTO


I am thankful for my daughter, my health, my truck, Cindy’s homemade grape jelly, and my new puppy Uno.

Sammie – GLDirect Warehouse


Thanksgiving…A time of deep personal introspection, contemplating the world around us, our place amongst our loved ones, and blah blah blah…So- in no particular order-

  • Indoor plumbing
  • Pizza
  • Sunday football
  • Beer
  • White lines on the highway (my nod to the Michael Stanley Band)
  • Spoons
  • Pillows
  • Hair
  • Zippers
  • Batteries
Steve – Warehouse


Use Multi-Touch Campaigns Boost Response Rates

One of the most effective ways to boost your response rates is sending strategic, multi-touch campaigns. This approach uses multiple contacts with the same or different media to build your message over time.

Often, these contacts are layered in three stages:

1. Priming the pump (“Watch for our exciting offer!”)

2. Presentation of the message

3. Follow-up or reminder to respond

This is not a formula that you should apply rigidly, and not all programs will utilize the same elements. But it’s a good, general rule of thumb that has proven very successful.

Take the example of a private school that wanted increase its donations. It developed a multi-touch campaign that stretched over several weeks. The program included:

  • General awareness letter to introduce the campaign and its financial goal
  • First, second, and third appeal letters, with personalized data based on child, grade level, teacher, and progress toward the goal
  • Postcard alerting families to an upcoming Phone-A-Thon
  • Phone-A-Thon follow-up card
  • Final appeal letter

Using this approach, the school reached its financial goal three months early, and overall, achieved new records for revenue and participation.

Not all multi-touch, multi-channel campaigns have this many elements, but this campaign shows the power that repeated, reinforced communications have to boost revenue, combined with the trust that many organizations, especially nonprofits, have in this approach.

Want to boost revenues using a multi-touch campaign? Give us a call!

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