Is it Junk Mail or Direct Mail?

marketing major

Student Adrienna Schindler is checking the colors on a client proof, which is printing live on press.

Oh the smell of rolls of paper that are larger than most of our homes and the freshly printed ink that is splashing color all over these massive rolls of paper.

No, I am not talking about the latest piece of art but rather the very thing you get each day in your mailbox: direct mail!  The Marketing degree students at Globe University in Minneapolis recently toured the printing facilities of Japs Olson, which was hosted by National Account Executive, Cory Funk.  The class is learning about every aspect of direct marketing, and what better way to learn than to take a tour of one of the largest and most complex direct mail companies.

Japs-Olson Company was founded in 1907 by Barney Japs and G.F. Olson. Then a small print company, they have since grown to be a worldwide leader in direct mail services and commercial printing. Today, they employ more than 700 people and provide services to clients nationwide. Their modern, 512,000-square-foot facility operates around the clock to ensure they meet their clients’ deadlines.

degree in marketing

Cory Funk from Japs Olson explains to students how a direct marketing piece is printed on the printing press.


Their capabilities, which the Marketing class is learning about, include their end-to-end printing and mailing services along with a pre-press production area.  They also do variable image printing, lettershop services, data processing services, commingling and direct mail fulfillment. All of their printing services are completed in-house.  They also have a post office on site that mails more than three million pieces of mail each day!

The Marketing class was able to sign off on a direct marketing project for a large national client.  The students had to compare the colors from the client approved piece with the actual piece being printed on press during the tour.  They also learned the four primary colors, CMYK, (Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and Black) that create the brilliance of any printed piece we look at.

career in marketingTara Ellis, one of the marketing students, said, “I had no idea that Marketing had so many moving pieces and was so exciting – I thought it was just a piece of simple mail that I get every day.”

Cory shared with the class that there are two words never used at a printing press. “We never say ‘Junk Mail.’ It’s called ‘Direct Mail’ and we never say ‘Waste’. It is always called ‘Recycled’ as we recycle all of the paper that is not used,” he said.

So the next time you open your mailbox, remind yourself that it’s not junk mail – it is direct mail.

To learn more about a degree or career in marketing, contact Globe University in Minneapolis: 1.877.303.6060.

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