Best known for its snail mailers, Valpak , a subsidiary of Cox Target Media, is increasing its online presence. This week, the company announced its acquisition of Savings.com  (as well as its sister site, London-based Savoo.co.uk ), an online source for savings, personalized deals and tips for saving money. The acquisition will add Savings.com’s 5 million monthly visitors to Valpak’s existing online traffic.
More Options for Small Businesses – And Consumers
Valpak introduced cost-effective direct mail to small businesses nearly half a century ago. Small businesses could include a coupon or special offer in a Valpak packet sent out to consumers. These days, 40 million Valpak mailers are sent out each month, and the company claims an open rate of about 85%. Now the company may be trying to create the same innovation online (though there’s much more competition in the online deals and coupons space).
“Cox Target Media and Valpak changed cooperative direct mail over the past 44 years, and now Cox Target Media is changing the sensible shopping landscape again with this acquisition,” explained Michael Vivio, CEO of Cox Target Media, “We are always looking for new ways to be as relevant to consumers as possible, and ultimately help them make the most of the dollars in their wallet.”
Valpak’s online strategy started in 1996 with its digital savings site. That site now offers 40,000 local coupons as well as a proprietary e-commerce product. Valpak also has apps for the iPhone, iPad and Android.
What Will Change
For the outsider, not much will change with this acquisition. Valpak.com and Savings.com will continue to operate independently, but will share savings content. What it means for small business owners is the opportunity to connect with consumers through multiple coupon and discount offers, online and off, through a single channel. Valpak will continue to have offerings that fit small business budgets.
The combined efforts will also give national merchants of all sizes options in pay-for-performance advertising; this allows marketers to drive sales with lower upfront costs than they typically encounter with traditional promotional options.
This acquisition speaks to the larger trend of advertising platforms seeking ways to help small businesses connect to consumers in more targeted and driven ways.