Cover Story: Full Sweep
Tracking is a critical element of the push for relevancy. Rob Befumo, PCH's senior director of e-commerce, notes that the company tracks each online data point from each source connected to customer visits and any offline activity to get the complete picture of each customer's value. "We've been careful to look at a holistic approach [to marketing] based on the customer," he says.
By using the customer ID code from its larger and older offline database as the chief identifier for all channels, PCH is able to integrate the customer activity it tracks across different media and departments and then use the ensuing insights to produce more targeted communications.
For example, this knowledge helps drive triggered and sequenced email messaging that leverages multichannel purchase history, affinity, demographics and credit risk factors, according to a case study on PCH published by its email services provider, e-Dialog.
Of course, none of this effort can be fruitful without reliable data. With respect to both offline and online sources, PCH only works with partners who provide clean and deliverable records. When it comes to processing its own data collected via site registrations, says Sal Tripi, PCH's senior director of operations and compliance, the company works to screen entries against USPS data to ensure complete, mailable addresses. It also employs methods to scrub submitted email addresses for accuracy and deliverability.
Relevance and Transparency Go Hand in Hand
The foundation of PCH's customer- centric approach to integrated direct marketing, as well as its lead- generation and display advertising businesses, is quality data. The company captures a significant amount of first-party information that consumers have shared on an opt-in basis either through surveys, registrations or purchases, says Glantz. "This sets us up well in terms of legislation that could come down the road in the direct marketing arena."