State of the Industry-1999 (2,293 words)
U.S. companies looking globally have the onus on them to do more homework and to learn about the social, political, legal and cultural dynamics of their destination market.
Trends and Predictions
Direct marketing is a robust industry and it promises to stay that way. Most experts agree that the Internet and database technology will have increasing importance as a means to institute better relationship marketing methods and to integrate all media with a single brand message.
Rogers predicts that many advances are currently on hold because of intellectual and financial resources currently being applied to the Year 2000 problem.
"I think in February of the Year 2000, we'll see incredible developments in data management," she says. "All the systems that are going to crash will have crashed and we'll be ready to move forward."
While some industry nay-sayers warn that the Internet will damage telephone marketing, direct mail or DRTV, others disagree.
"As direct marketing methods grow, budgets will expand, not be redistributed," says Hochhauser.
"The Internet will take dollars from elsewhere. The Internet and telephone are complementary and work together with increasingly sophisticated technology."
The challenge then, for the next millenium is to find better ways to integrate media and unify brand messages. Tune in next month for "One Message, One Voice: Creating a New Media Plan" for some clues about where to begin.