List leaders discuss today's Challenging market (2,023 words)
Root: The economic slowdown has hit the business service market (wireless communication, dot-com services)—not surprising since these types of mailers were just so aggressive last year in their prospecting efforts. Negotiating also has become a much greater role of the account managers at ALC. Mailers are requesting deals more often than they were last year—often crying out the need for the deal being a result of the soft economy.
TM: Have any new lists come on the market in the past year that have had a major impact? Have they had much success?
Montana: There have been a number of new lists that have come on the market this year. These lists range from the traditional including Basil Street Gallery and The Cashmere Company, to the non-traditional such as Proflowers and Snapfish.com. Over the last 12 months, we have seen more e-commerce companies looking to launch their lists than any other list segment.
Moriarty: Lists focused in the wireless communications and fiber optic areas are experiencing tremendous revenue growth rates versus those experienced in previous years. As professionals become more accustomed to working online, wireless communications (PDAs, cell phones, etc.) products will be in great demand. Those who manufacture or use such devices/networks will experience a spike in buying activity.
TM: Are there any not-so-obvious list categories mailers should consider mailing now?
DiSciullo: Web-derived postal lists can be a source of "remote responders," though their success depends on the accuracy with which they are maintained and targeted. If they are not repleat with selectivity of their own, they require enhancement data to make them so.
Montana: We believe mailers and brokers should be looking at every list segment as a testing opportunity. Clearly there are going to be obvious opportunities that are "must-test lists" however, do not overlook lists that do not appear to be a perfect fit on the surface. Many times demographics, lifestyle and product selects can help you pinpoint your audience. If you don't see this on the data card … ask!