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July 2007 Issue

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Editor’s Notes: We’ve Got Engagement
This past weekend, I spent 15 minutes on the phone with my bank waiting to tell the first available representative that I lost my ATM card. My lengthy delay was kicked off by the announcement that Wachovia had been ranked...
Nuts & Bolts: Eye on Privacy
The April release of the president’s Identity Theft Task Force’s report, “Combating Identity Theft: A Strategic Plan,” offers a convenient reason to revisit the subject of protecting customer data. The report contains a comprehensive overview of existing laws that relate...
Nuts & Bolts: Book Club
What “Managing Sales Leads” (The Thompson Corporation, $39.95) lacks in style, it certainly makes up for in substance. Pick it up for its action-oriented checklists and chapter summaries as well as a thorough (three chapters worth!) analysis of why sales...
Direct Selling: Straight to the Source
Catalog and Internet marketers historically have pooh-poohed the use of customer research. The reasons for this disdain are numerous. Here are some of the excuses I’ve heard: • We don’t need it. • Research won’t tell us anything we don’t...
E-commerce Link: Easy-to-read E-mail
I sign up to receive a good deal of e-mail communications. Some of the messages I receive are perfectly crafted, some are lackluster and others could be dramatically more effective with some simple fixes. Here are a few ideas you...
Direct Mail Strategy: Give ’em a Sneak Peek
In a recent survey entitled “Because It’s Personal: A Study of Consumer Use and Preference for Envelopes,” conducted by the Envelope Manufacturers Association Foundation, two-thirds of the survey participants indicated they open envelopes received by mail “if they think the...
Famous Last Words: The 100% Envelope
Many years ago, I got a request from a lawyer to be an expert witness on behalf of a major publisher of books and magazines that was facing a nasty lawsuit. A test mailing went out for a diet book,...
Market Focus: Grandparents
When you think of grandparents, you may conjure up images of gray-haired men and women living in retirement homes and giving their grandkids nickels to buy ice cream cones. Wake up! Today’s grandparents are baby boomers—the people who redefined every...
Database Marketing: Timing Is Everything
Imagine being able to time a marketing campaign so it hits exactly when a customer needs the product or service promoted. Today’s trigger-based marketing programs seize the moment by capturing just-in-time data and then turning that data into executable campaigns...
Nuts & Bolts: RSS
Your RSS buffet might be loaded with information your market will find useful, but before it can feast on your insights and deals, it has to know where to request the feeds. Rok Hrastnik, international Internet director at Studio Moderna,...
Triggers in Action: Welcome Messages That Go Beyond Thanking the Customer
With more than 10,000 new subscribers a day, a prominent media and entertainment company was having difficulty cost-effectively managing phone inquiries from new customers. It needed to develop a welcome program that immediately touched new subscribers, introduced them to the...
How Fit Is Your E-mail Program?
It’s official: Forrester Research recently announced that e-mail is a blink or two away from achieving universal penetration, with 97 percent of consumers and 94 percent of marketers using the channel. By and large, massive channel adoption by a marketplace...
Fulfillment: At Your Request
A sure way to fire up results for your fulfillment program is to look for opportunities to better serve your leads during their information-gathering process. If two-thirds of consumers have reported they feel unsolicited marketing materials are not relevant to...
Nuts & Bolts: Case Study
Challenge: Boost awareness of a cause largely overlooked in the developed world and reach new donors. Solution: Leverage social marketing forums. Results: More than 77,000 Web hits since the campaign began in January 2007. The average user of Second Life,...