So we've made it through Thanksgiving weekend, 2014. And you'd believe the newspaper business was healthy! My recycling bucket of newsprint and assorted fliers touting "Black Friday" would have challenged Arnold Schwarzenegger. Instead, the task of getting it onto the sidewalk fell to me. Umph.
Big Data is B.S. Many companies can't even employ Little Data. In January 2014, I found a possible cruise adventure with Cunard—Rome to Venice around the Italy boot and the Sicily soccer ball.
Travel anywhere—or visit the travel section of a bookstore—and you'll run across the name Arthur Frommer. He is the publisher of guidebooks, travel books and maps. Enter "Frommer" into amazon.com and you'll get 6,049 results. Go to Arthur Frommer's website and you'll have the entire world at your fingertips—where and how to go, where to stay, where to eat and drink, what to see and do. I would bet this is the world's greatest database of the world for the traveler—continually updated and invaluable.
On Sunday, Feb. 7, I opened the New York Times Travel Section and found an amusing piece by book critic Dwight Garner. The title: "Seven Days on the Queen Mary 2." One memorable paragraph: A crossing on the Queen Mary 2 is the sort of thing people put on their bucket lists. More than a few passengers on our crossing seemed perilously close to kicking that bucket. The QM2's dance club pulled a frantic young crowd after midnight. But the average age on our crossing, I'd guess, was well over 60. There was an abundance of wheelchairs, walkers and canes, so many that if everyone had tossed theirs overboard at once they would have created an artificial reef.
2012 was a good year for us, and we decided to splurge on a joint Christmas present—the commemorative set of 22 James Bond DVDs to celebrate the 50th anniversary. We journeyed to Costco to buy some hamburger and the Bond DVDs. Got the hamburger, but Bond was nowhere to be found.
For many across the country, April tends to be a rainy, dreary month. In other words, the perfect time to be swept away with thoughts of your next vacation. Capitalizing on this dynamic, the Cunard Line, the cruise line brand of the Queen Mary 2, sent a direct mail piece to prospects in late April touting its luxurious voyages to the Caribbean and Europe. The uniquely folded brochure arrived in prospects' mailboxes consisting of just one sheet of paper and served as the perfect stimulant to help recipients transport themselves to a luxury-filled cruise aboard the 5-year-old vessel.
By Denny Hatch It was the late, great freelancer Bill Jayme who said that direct mail was like theater in that to be successful, it had to create a willing suspension of disbelief. Postcards are no exception. What is a postcard? It can be a short, handwritten note from a friend or family member with an exotic postage stamp from some far corner of the world. Or a reminder from Roy at our historic church about guide duty from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday. In the world of magazine circulation, the double postcard was positively ubiquitous for a few years. The