Appetite for Insight
In the continued push to create more relevant promotions that will satisfy recipients' particular interests, direct marketers are demanding more precise information from their business allies. And since we strive to be your No. 1 resource for direct mail insights, Inside Direct Mail has revamped the monthly Mail Watch department and solicited a new columnist to offer up even more detailed direct mail analysis for you in 2005.
First up, Mail Watch is changing to provide you with more in-depth coverage of mail trends in sectors such as publishing, financial services, merchandise and more. For example, in studying B-to-B mail from the first three quarters of 2004 for this issue, we discovered that the trend is, well, the absence of any major new trends. B-to-B marketers are sticking closely to what has worked in the mail in previous years, an observation that very well could fit other sectors in the coming months. Turn to page 25 for details on personalization usage, formats mailed and more.
With this issue we say a fond farewell to bimonthly column If You Ask Me, top copywriter Ken Schneider's slightly irreverent but exceedingly funny take on the direct mail creative process. The Inside Direct Mail staff is extremely grateful to Schneider for sharing his unique insights on the opportunities and pitfalls involved in developing great direct mail campaignsand for making us laugh while we learned!
Taking its place is Conscious Creative, a new column from Donna Baier Stein. President of copywriting firm Baier Stein Direct and the talent behind controls for direct marketers such as The Nature Conservancy and the National Parks and Conservation Association, Stein is widely known for leading many of the Direct Marketing Association's "Winning Direct Mail" and "Copywriting for New and Traditional Media" seminars.
Conscious Creative will address not only the finer points of direct mail copyimagery, repetition, rhythm, versioningbut the copywriter's and direct marketer's responsibility to the world at large. As Stein puts it, we should be consistently mindful of how direct mail affects the recipient's bottom line in addition to our own.
If you would like even more direct marketing ideas to chew on, make it a habit to stop by the Inside Direct Mail Web site, www.insidedirectmail.com, to read the monthly online exclusive from copywriter Ivan Levison. This online feature covers the direct mail gamut, from tips on effectively using postcards to making sure your letter close doesn't fall flat as a pancake.
We hope these editorial features are of great use to you and your direct mail campaigns.