Partnership: A Direct Mail Buzzword?
Partnerships seem to be popping up everywhere these days, and in all sorts of markets. But, more often than not, they consist of winning combinations involving companies in similar industries. Which is why we found interest in two recent direct mail efforts from Columbia House.
Culled from the Who's Mailing What! Archive, this effort sent by Columbia House to Blockbuster members offers five DVDs for 49 cents each when prospects join the Columbia House DVD Club (127COLHOU0404).
Though most of the elements of the mailingthe DVD stamp sheet, the large poly window and the bubbled typeface on the carrier envelope, insert and reply deviceare signatures of Columbia House creative, according to Terry Macko, senior vice president of marketing for Columbia House, development of the mailing was a collaborative effort with Blockbuster. Macko believes this type of partnership is key for consumer marketing companies looking to grow their revenue and customer base.
"I'm a strong believer in marketing partnerships between companies where it's a win-win relationship and each is bringing something of value to the joint marketing effort," he adds.
A partnership with Blockbuster seems a natural collaboration for Columbia House, as both companies seek prospects with similar affinities. But the DVD club marketer has recently strayed from its media territory, launching a direct mail campaign targeted at Delta Airlines SkyMiles members.
Initiated in April, the mailing offers SkyMiles members 3,000 bonus miles for enrolling in the Columbia House DVD Club and fulfilling the purchase
Macko says leveraging the benefits of membership in the DVD club with additional perks for existing Blockbuster and Delta members was an effort to boost response.
Macko explains Blockbuster gift cards are known in the industry as being great response mechanisms. However, to appeal to SkyMiles membersa broader audience baseColumbia House focused on consumers' love of frequent flyer miles and the ease with which members can earn miles with this offer.
A success? Too early to tell. But Macko affirms his faith in the Columbia House partnerships with Blockbuster and Delta because they create what he calls a "triple-win."
"Delta wants their members to earn more miles, and we want more members to experience Columbia House and buy DVDs from us," says Macko. "It's a win for Columbia House, it's a win for Delta, and it's a win for the consumer. And those are really the best marketing partnerships."
Columbia House is always trying new sales and marketing channels, he adds. And with the explosion of the DVD market, it's sure to continue trying new ways of capturing consumers' attention.