The creative arm of the Wilen Group was founded over 45 years ago as a custom publishing company catering to the burgeoning cable television industry. Wilen New York now specializes in creating direct marketing communications for a wide range of industries.
Richard Wilen starts a company called Seal Send Systems. Wilen and Bob Bemer (the founder of ASCII computer code) combine forces to produce the Honeywell Computer Journal.
Richard Wilen is introduced to his first cable television customer — Athena Communications (Gulf & Western).
Wilen produces the HBO Guide, the first program guide to incorporate editorial content.
Wilen produces newspaper advertising, direct mailers and bill inserts for Teleprompter Corporation (Manhattan's first cable TV company).
Wilen Media opens for business on Long Island, NY.
John Sie (Founder of Encore TV Network) and Jerry Maglio (1st President of CTAM: Cable & Telecommunications Association for Marketing) approach Wilen with the idea of promoting both HBO and Showtime to the same cable subscriber. Wilen publishes Premium Channels; including the first “Bundled” offer ever.
Wilen combines word processing and computer typesetting to create automated program guides.
Wilen develops program guides printed on the lightest weight paper manufactured. Premium Channels becomes the only publication in history to qualify for Periodical (Second Class) rates and to be inserted into a billing envelope.
Circulation for Wilen’s Premium Channels reaches 3 million. Wilen launches separate program guide including content for Playboy Channel, Disney Channel, Encore, Sports and Basic Cable.
Wilen publishes Pay-Per-View guides for both Request TV and Viewers Choice.
Wilen works with Richard Aurelio (Deputy Mayor of NYC) and Hugh Panero (Former CEO XM Radio) to publish PPV guides for 1 million homes in New York City.
Wilen begins a relationship with HBO, becoming an authorized direct marketer to promote their boxing events on PPV; markets the legendary Tyson is Back! (Tyson vs. Douglas) fight.
After relying on outsourced resources and partnerships for production and fulfillment for almost 25 years, Wilen launches its first in-house pre-press business unit, a first step towards bringing production in-house.
Wilen breaks ground on its primary manufacturing facility in Deerfield Beach, Florida, installing web presses specifically geared for direct mail and insert production. Wilen’s first year alone brings significant success to the tune of 200 million pieces.
Wilen doubles-down on high-volume direct mail production, installing a second web press with complex inline finishing to produce unique direct mail formats engineered and patented by founder Richard Wilen.
Wilen relocates its agency to a larger office in Farmingdale, New York, and expands into new business verticals outside of the cable industry.
Wilen introduces full-service custom publishing services packaging creative, content management, editorial and printing.
Wilen begins in-house mailing services including data processing/hygiene, addressing, on-site USPS verification and mail logistics management.
Wilen exceeds a production benchmark of 500 million pieces of direct mail within just ten years of opening its manufacturing arm.
A new building is constructed at Wilen’s press to accommodate higher volume output. Wilen creates W3, a centralized digital workflow tool to seamlessly manage complex versioning across campaigns.
Wilen installs a third web press equipped with inline inkjet heads re-engineered to lay down data driven content such as offers and personalization, eliminating black plate changes and consolidating mail streams for our clients. The potential to achieve significant production and postage costs through this technology is realized, and focus is shifted to Variable Data Printing.
Wilen betas Kodak’s new Prosper S-10 inkjet system, the first application of high-definition 600 DPI inkjet imaging on a web press. Wilen re-launches its manufacturing arm as Wilen Direct, with a specific focus on 1:1 direct mail marketing.
Wilen Media’s growing agency services are strengthened by the addition of several Madison Avenue veterans to the creative team, including Executive Creative Director Wayne Schombs. Direct marketing experts realize the targeting and segmentation opportunities afforded by Wilen Direct’s variable data printing capabilities.
Wilen launches WheresMyMail.com and successfully matches USPS exit scan data to clients call center reports, enabling marketers to gain real-time insight into the delivery and performance of their campaigns in one simple dashboard.
Wilen Media is re-launched as Wilen New York, a full service agency led by top Madison Avenue talent leading change in the industry.
Wilen Direct is recognized on the cover of Printing Impressions as a pioneer in the direct mail industry, coinciding with the installation of Kodak’s Prosper 5000XLi 4-color variable high-speed web press. New technology enables marketers limitless targeting flexibility and maximum postage discounts through the consolidation of mail streams.
Wilen Direct further expands its footprint to accommodate more equipment and inventory, translating to faster turn-around times and speed to market for our clients. Staff grows to over 300 team members. Wilen Direct is operating 24/7/364 supporting the direct mail marketing needs of our clients.
Wilen ushers in the next wave of direct mail marketing advancements with the installation of the Kodak Prosper 6000C and Kodak NexPress SX3900. Output quality and speeds of high-definition 4-color variable direct mail is unmatched.
Wilen’s on-going efforts to bring limitless direct mail targeting capabilities to new industries was a key area of focus in 2016. Advancements in technology and processes increased capacity and output speeds, while HIPAA compliance paved the way for new verticals to take advantage of these opportunities.
As direct marketing has evolved into a strategic, data-driven art form, our capabilities have grown to support not only the creation of impactful direct marketing, but its manufacturing and delivery into the hands of millions of consumers across the nation.
Our unmatched understanding of both direct marketing strategy and modern print production delivers scalable direct marketing campaigns and strong ROI for our clients.