Have a look at the photo to see the cover of ULINE's Spring/Summer 2014 catalog—628 pages offering "over 29,000 packaging, shipping, industrial and janitorial products, ready to ship today." My guess: It cost $2 in the mail. I do not believe I have ever placed a single order with Uline, and yet I have been receiving these behemoths for more than 30 years. The obvious conclusion: Uline's accountants use an abacus.
Typically, the front end of the direct marketing process garners the most attention from environmental rights and waste reduction groups, and with good reason. Americans receive roughly 4 million tons of direct mail per year, according to statistics on the Clean Air Council’s Web site. But the back end, or fulfillment side, of direct marketing also requires the manufacture of quite a few components essential for shipping product orders and lead fulfillment kits to customers and respondents: boxes, padded mailers, cushioning materials, etc. What’s more, these materials might not be as easily recycled by the recipient as unwanted direct mail. For example, most of
By Hallie Mummert Change is afoot, I'm reminded with almost every news story I read in the general press. A speech delivered by consultant Don Libey at a recent Direct Marketing Idea Exchange meeting further convinced me. While Libey is always histrionic when showcasing his ideas, he does not fail to leave his audience with food for thought. In fact, his talk brought perspective to a few events I had been trying to make sense of recently. For one, there's the deal made by Wal-Mart, Target and Toys R Us with 38 states and the District of Columbia to charge sales tax on orders