Special Report Insert Media Buying Guide
Overall, your best bets are to watch your CPO like a hawk and to network, network, network. Both offer benefits that extend beyond helping to improve your insert media opportunities.
Cosmetique's Sitting Pretty With Insert Media
Insert media might be a second-tier channel for quite a few direct marketers, but for Cosmetique, the Vernon Hills, Ill., continuity and club marketer of cosmetics and fragrance kits, it's top-shelf all the way.
In fact, according to Steve Berg, Cosmetique's director of new customer acquisition, insert media ranks as one of his company's top three acquisition channels. And while lower response rates than those of some channels can be balanced out by lower costs, insert customers' worth to Cosmetique is anything but small.
"Looking at the print channel," says Berg, "package inserts overall [deliver] a higher lifetime value for us [than other channels]."
Berg's go-to program categories are: package inserts, ride-alongs, statement stuffers and cooperatives.
When it comes to testing, Cosmetique sets aside about 10 percent to 20 percent of its insert media budget for new programs. The exact percent devoted to each category might differ, but the ability to find new sources of names is a priority protected from budget cuts.
To invest his testing dollars wisely, Berg says he's selective about which new programs he tests. Given that insert media plays such a large role in Cosmetique's prospecting plan, the company has quite a bit of performance history on different program types in different business sectors. With this insight, Berg can be tough in price negotiations and will bide his time until a new program comes down on its CPM to a level that works for his offers.
"The club arena [operates on] a much more definitive metric [than one-shot offers], in terms of 'you're going to get this response range for this type of insert,' which is going to dictate a specific lifetime value," he explains.