National Geographic Society

The Top 50 Mailers of 2012
September 1, 2012

Big companies have ramped up their mailing in 2012. JPMorgan Chase & Co., Sprint/Nextel, Dish Network and Discover Financial Services are all on the list after none of them appeared in 2011 or 2010. In fact, according to our data JPMorgan Chase hasn't mailed this heavily in five years—since 2007 when the company reported a mere $99.9 billion in revenue.

Hero Worship
November 1, 2009

Products and services. That's what we sell. Every company has something to offer, whether it's a tangible good, training, technology, or financial products and services. As marketers, we are in the business of selling "things." But some of these products stand out because they provide the solutions to problems people need answered. They are your best-sellers. We hang the mantle of "hero" upon these products because they are not only profit generators, but also represent your biggest opportunities.

1 Tip for Balanced Copy
June 25, 2008

The goal of a direct response campaign—no matter what channel—is to sell the product/service or next step in the response process. But it’s important not to oversell prospects. People get enough solicitations thrown their way that simply ignoring the bulk of them becomes second nature. That’s why it’s as important as ever to strike the proper balance between being an overeager salesman and being a trusted source. This balancing act is no walk in park. “Trying to balance that [product and promotion in the copy] continues to be important because it’s so easy to just want to go one way all the way or

September 1, 2007

The full list of 2007’s Top 50 Mailers (excludes catalogers) Company Sales/Revenue Industry List Manager(s) (in millions) Citigroup $146,558 Financial Does not rent Bank of America $117,017 Financial Does not rent JP Morgan Chase $99,845 Financial Does not rent 4 Sprint/Nextel $41,028 Telecommunications Does not rent American Express $27,136 Financial/Media Millard Group Washington Mutual $26,454 Financial Does not rent Capital One $15,191 Financial Does not rent Time Inc. $5,846 Media Millard Group/ Belardi-Ostroy Inc. 4 Pitney Bowes Co. $5,730 Business Services MeritDirect Salvation Army $5,300 Nonprofit Does not rent 4 Discover Card Services Inc. $5,000 Financial Does not rent Hearst Magazines $4,550 Media Direct Media International American Red Cross $3,919 Nonprofit The Carol Enters List Co./ American List Counsel The New York Times Company $3,289.9 Media American List Counsel BMG/Columbia House $2,400 Media Specialists Marketing Services/American List Counsel Reader’s Digest Association $2,386.2* Media American List Counsel/ The Catamount Group 4 Scholastic Inc. $2,283.8 Media Specialists Marketing Services/ Millard Group/List Services Corp. Dow Jones & Company $1,783.9 Media American List Counsel Meredith Corp. $1,600 Media American List Counsel/ Millard Group Company Sales/Revenue Industry List Manager(s) (in millions) Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Society $1,623 Nonprofit Direct Media International Conde Nast Publications $1,400 Media Millard

Stupid Countries, Stupider Museums
June 26, 2007

One night in the early 1980s, my wife, Peggy, and I were sitting in the second row of the Mark Hellinger Theater watching the musical romp “Sugar Babies,” starring Mickey Rooney and Ann Miller. Mickey Rooney (amazingly, this was his Broadway debut) was standing outside a hotel room door listening to what was going on inside between two newlyweds. It was the setup for a very old joke that I had known since boyhood. “When you get to the umbrella, it’s mine!” Rooney shouted through the door. I let out a guffaw that rocked the theater and the audience followed suit. Rooney marched down

Creative Travels
June 1, 2007

When you think of the National Geographic Society, you may envision the iconic yellow-bordered magazine that you sneaked peeks at as a kid in hopes of catching a glimpse of naked tribespeople. But while the photo-packed magazine is a big part of what the nonprofit organization does, there’s so much more to it than that. The National Geographic Society is a Washington, D.C.-based membership organization that offers not one, but five magazines, as well as books, DVDs, TV programs, educational courses, webcasts, museum exhibitions, concerts, lectures, film screenings and even the National Geographic Bee, a geographic version of the old-fashioned spelling bee. While its vision

The National Geographic Society’s Karen Rice Gardiner on Direct Mail
November 29, 2006

Hardly a day goes by when the average American consumer doesn’t come home from work to find a few pieces of direct mail in the mailbox. We’ve all gotten used to the routine of opening the pieces that we find important, relevant or interesting, and tossing the ones we don’t. Given the scant few seconds marketers have to capture the attention and imagination of their intended audience, it takes an enormous amount of creative talent to successfully place those relevant messages in the right mailboxes and get them opened. This week, Target Marketing caught up with Karen Rice Gardiner, director of creative services for

The Top 50 Mailers
September 1, 2006

Target Marketing blended mailing history from the Who's Mailing What! Archive with list activity from full-service list and data firm American List Counsel to develop a proprietary compilation of the top users of direct mail in the United States. Included in this Top 50 listing are some of the industry's most venerable members, such as Readers Digest Association, Time Inc., American Express, Highlights for Children and AARP. And a number of these firms have practically built their businesses on the backs of direct mail packages; I'm talking about Boardroom Inc., Rodale Inc., AOL and International Masters Publishers. Particularly gratifying is the fact that the owner

Don’t Fight the Law
April 1, 2004

Your Legal Team Need Not Be the Bane of Your Creative Efforts: A Guide to Prosperous Coexistence Your legal team and your creative team are two departments wed by corporate necessity and predestined to disagree. Or are they? It’s true these two factions, equally vital in the advancement and survival of your business, often approach situations from polar perspectives. But with a little cooperation, understanding and, most importantly, communication, your legal and creative departments can get along like June and Ward Cleaver rather than Peggy and Al Bundy. Perhaps the first step to harmonious relations between legal and creative is understanding the

Direct Mail Metamorphosis
January 1, 2003

A Checklist For Adapting Your U.S. Package For Overseas Markets By Lisa Yorgey Lester Your mail piece has a better chance of being opened and read abroad than it does at home; overseas markets receive far less direct mail than the United States. What's more, you may not have to start from scratch. Many U.S. direct marketers have scored big response rates by adapting their domestic control and mailing it abroad. It pays to stick close to winning U.S. creative. "You know it works with your customers," says Walt Terry, senior manager of international business development, circulation, for the National Geographic Society. For