A Model Response
February 1, 2004

5 Steps to Building a Sound Response Model By Forrestt Severtson It is very easy to fall into the situation of putting the cart before the horse when it comes to response modeling in the direct mail arena. How tempting it is to let the technical aspects associated with modeling distract you from the most important principal in building a model: Business needs must define and drive the modeling process. If you don't clearly understand your business problem and how to measure it, even the best model in the world won't help you solve it. Consider the typical problem of acquiring new customers. The

Do's & Don'ts in the Privacy Era
November 1, 2003

By Donna Loyle The rise of targeted marketing principles and the implementation of efficient data-collection and -sharing practices has been one of the driving forces of the American economy for the last several decades. Of that, no one is in dispute—not even government officials. But the migration from mass marketing to direct marketing also has a down side. Some consumers, tired of having targeted offers thrust at them from all angles, are experiencing marketing fatigue. And they're starting to say: "Enough already!" Add to the mix the alarming rise in identity theft, computer-clogging spam and telemarketing, and you

Higher-cost, Hyper-targeted Efforts Can Win Big (1,164 words)
September 1, 2003

By Daniel Kelman You do the math. Target until it hurts; then target some more. That is the mantra of a successful marketing campaign. But targeting alone isn't enough. To get exceptional response rates—as high as 90 percent—I suggest using what I call the "high connection" approach. Traditional high-end direct marketing math dictates that while targeting models are crucial, efficiencies are created through production economies: large-volume mailings plus a low cost per unit. High connection marketing turns that logic upside down. For this type of effort, you have to hyper-target down to a micro

TM0803_Market Focus, Pet Owners
August 1, 2003

By Alicia Orr Suman Ask a dog lover to name his family members and he'll likely include Fido along with his wife and kids. "That's the nature of the pet owner," says Geoff Walker, CEO of PetFoodDirect.com, an Internet seller of pet food and other pet products. Particularly when it comes to dogs and cats, pets are seen as part of the family, and as such, people want the best for their pets—from toys and treats to food and healthcare. Last year, the Pet Food Institute reported there were more than 75 million pet

Market Focus--Home Workshop Enthusiasts (693 words)
January 1, 2002

If you've ever lazily flipped through your television channels on a Saturday afternoon, chances are you've happened upon the Emmy Award-winning "This Old House"—television's premier home improvement series. The show, which celebrated its 22nd anniversary season on PBS this year, unlocked America's passion for the home—and its unpredicted popularity proved how many Americans are willing to spend both time and money on various home projects. Who Are They? In line with the stereotypical image of this demographic, the average home improvement enthusiast is male, mature and married. He also tends to be middle-class, educated and family-oriented. However, clearly defining a typical home

Two Mailboxes Are Better than One (688 words)
May 1, 2001

By Diane March The Charles Schwab TV commercial featuring Ringo Starr spouting off investment buzz words to the bewilderment of his rock 'n' roll cohorts really hits home for direct marketers in the aftermath of the Internet's implosion. Investment principles hold up in the direct marketer's relentless need to refine, rethink and retool in order to capture the attention of the media-saturated consumer. The postal mailbox may be cluttered, but there's more than one mailbox, and more than one address that direct marketers must leverage. In his commercial, Starr mentions "asset allocation." For direct marketers, this can be interpreted to mean the integration

Bridge the Gap Between Online and Off-line Customer Profiling (
November 1, 1999

by Mark T. Hesler In targeted and one-to-one marketing today, the conversation always revolves around a few subjects. Mass customization is one of the main mantras. Companies are being compelled today to engage customers in unprecedented levels of personalization. The rise of the Internet as a viable marketing and sales channel raises the bar even higher. Companies that succeed will do so because they've done a better job of understanding and integrating their customers' buying habits and preferences across multiple channels. This will become increasingly important as customers shift back and forth between traditional marketing channels to Web-based activities. Some very exciting technology