A Dynamic Document is a multi-faceted customer touchpoint, combining data and a range of options for everyone involved in its production: the initial software developers, your IT staff, and the very customers who read it.
By this we mean that the software behind it is dynamic, working with the data and responding to it intelligently; it’s produced dynamically, with infinite design possibilities and multiple delivery options; and it is experienced dynamically, giving the customer a fully-engaging read with optimized layouts, emblems, and data visualizations.
How we define Dynamic Document, from a customer experience perspective, starts with visual appeal.
You’ve heard that a picture is worth a thousand words. Well, a fancy graphic could be worth millions of dollars.
It’s well known that customers respond to visuals. We live in the age of emoticons. Consumption of visual media tends to double, or even triple, each year. This should tell us something about our average consumer.
Not only do people gravitate to images because they are easier to consume, but they actually have the opportunity to consume more information than they would textually. Graphics have more than one dimension to them – they are a language of their own.
This is only part of what is meant by dynamic, in the context of a Dynamic Document.
There is actually a full range of options with dynamic documents, starting with your all-powerful, agile document production system. One aspect is the different use-cases it provides for.
Need a batch of documents delivered to hundreds, thousands – or hundreds of thousands of customers? There are solutions to deliver in high volume. There is also functionality for sending personalized, custom correspondence on the spot. And for even more engaging communications, there exist fully interactive documents, ones that provide a two-way conversation where clickable assets within the document actually track customer preferences and adjust to what they click on (and what they don’t).
Three dimensions of use – does this make your documents dynamic?
Ultimately, a Dynamic Document means any communication that interacts with your data systems and makes intelligent decisions for the good of your customer interaction. A system boasting Dynamic Documents would rightly have conditional formatting to manage the complexity of a customer base. A workflow can process customer demographics and preference information by several complex ‘if-then’ statements to deliver personalized documents, even in batch runs.
The system would also provide for the editing of subdocuments – not the master template, but subsidiary ones, adjusting to the preferences of a particular cross-section of customers ad-hoc.
The phrase Dynamic Interactive Document just fills the circle. Where the customer’s experience was already multidimensional – thanks to a tight workflow with several production options at the company’s disposal – the company sees return immediately in the form of data, enhancing the customer experience but also learning from how customers actually use the document.
So the word dynamic can mean a lot of things: the many dimensions of how a customer experiences the document, the many options at a company’s disposal for creating and distributing them, and ultimately the document production system’s ability to integrate with any customer data system.