You could say that Howard Cutler’s printing company left its mark when the business combined and expanded into Allegra, a full-service marketing agency.
The company, which is based in Danbury, combines “high-quality marketing with top creative talent and production experts and also uses the latest printing and mailing technologies,” said Mr. Cutler, a Wilton resident. “We’re a one-stop shop. We do multiple services and do them well.”
Allegra is also one of the fastest-growing marketing, print and mail resources in Fairfield County, according to Mr. Cutler. “Changes in the marketplace have made more sophisticated marketing strategies a necessity for companies of all sizes,” he said. “For some smaller organizations, accessing the talent and tools that they need can be cost-prohibitive. We are able to pass along numerous efficiencies in time and dollars by having in-house graphic designers, full-service printing technologies and mailing services that reduce postal costs.”
Mr. Cutler started the business in July 2008, when he purchased Rapid Repro, a commercial printing business in Danbury. A year later, he joined Allegra Network, which he described as “one of the world’s largest marketing and print franchises.”
Since then, Allegra’s client roster has grown by 25% in new business, Mr. Cutler said. He attributed the upswing to “sophisticated campaigns” and also the fact the “one-stop shop approach” helps clients keep costs in check.
Also, Mr. Cutler said, he has been seeing some “pent-up demand” caused by the economic downturn. “People were cutting marketing services, which is the one thing they should not cut,” he said. “Those who stay active with their marketing come out much further ahead in the recovery.”
Allegra’s client list includes Greenwich Country Club, Pitney Bowes, Sacred Heart University, United Way of Coastal Fairfield County, Ridgefield Visiting Nurses, and the Westport and Bethel school districts.
Specifically, Allegra’s services include “strategic planning, graphic design, copywriting, full-color printing, mailing list acquisition and management, direct mail programs, promotional products, and more,” he said.
Allegra works with many nonprofits because direct mail is “integral to their marketing and fund-raising strategies,” he said. For example, Allegra has worked with “Serious Fun Network,” formerly Hole in the Wall Camps founded by the late Paul Newman, to help revamp its marketing materials, including letterhead, envelopes, business cards, signs, annual report design, and printing, he said.
Before launching Allegra, Mr. Cutler served as vice president of marketing services, brand management and promotion at J. P. Morgan Chase. He also worked in direct mail marketing for Columbia and Publisher’s Clearing House.
Mr. Cutler said he currently has eight employees, but expects his business to continue to grow, especially with the expansion of digital technology.
“I feel fortunate that I was able to start my own business, build it with a very strong team of talented people and continue to grow,” Mr. Cutler said. “In the end, what matters most to our clients are results, and we have been able to garner impressive results for continuous improvement in a volatile economic environment.”