Cover Story: In the Right Market
NavigatorSM also offers a forecasting tool that can make predictions on how campaigns will progress over a 12-month maturation period. “When you load in a brand new list, there’s no historical data on how this list will perform, so Ruf built an algorithm that looks at look-alike lists—lists that were sent out in the same time of year and performed in a certain way after the first month or two months,” explains Mueller.
“[Before], we would be able to say this is a list we mailed to and here’s the net pull—basically do some very archaic measurements that took three months to get information on how a campaign was doing,” she continues. “Now we can make those decisions today to go back into a list if we want to or … hold off for a couple of months to see how it’s performing if it’s not doing as well as we thought the first couple of months. The forecasting has become an excellent tool to help us make decisions quickly.”
Upping the Ante
AIG Travel Guard’s direct marketing team is “constantly pushed to continue to grow the business … to mail more, drop more, grow more,” says Mueller. Through its partnership with Ruf Strategic Solutions, the company has been able to find the volume of quality lists it needs to mail and to do so strategically.
In 2006, AIG Travel Guard dropped 2.8 million direct mail pieces. That number encompasses marketing for both acquisition and retention, though the lion’s share comprised educational pieces that focused on informing prospects about the benefits of travel insurance, Mueller says.
Last year the company’s direct mail marketing more than doubled, with mail volumes reaching between 7 and 7.5 million. Mueller says the company plans to send out more than 10 million direct mail pieces in 2008.