Robert Bly

“In this book, you get dozens of suggestions, strategies, recommendations and rules of thumb with the potential to double or triple your response rates, writes Robert Bly in the introduction to his 2006 book “Bly on Direct Marketing: 258 ways to double your response—based on a quarter century of proven results” (Merit Direct Press, $49). As the subhead suggests and reading the book will attest, the term “dozens” is a bit of an understatement. Indeed, this is 293 pages packed with the kind of actionable ideas that marketers, especially those on the creative side of the business, clamor for. Touching on such varied topics

Within the world of premiums, information is a hot commodity. Whitepapers, guides and other educational items have steadily gained in popularity over the past few years, supplanting baseball caps, tote bags and myriad tchotchkes as the go-to response boosters for many mailers, particularly those in the publishing and B-to-B sectors. To wit, in the second quarter of 2006, 24.3 percent of premium mailings collected by the Who’s Mailing What! Archive contained informational freebies; that number jumps to about 32.4 percent if you take the proprietary loyalty programs offered by financial services companies out of the equation. With so many educational premiums in the marketplace, it

By Russell Kern In interview after interview, I ask copywriters and account managers who are applying for a position with my firm, "What have you read recently?" Too often the answer I get is a blank stare. OK, maybe they didn't understand my question. So, I get more specific: "What have you ever read to give you the background necessary to be a direct marketing professional?" Again, in most of these situations their answers barely touch the wealth of marketing classics and up-to-the-moment marketing and business books available. This leaves me wondering: How can they become master craftsmen, if they never study the

With Paul Barbagallo To commemorate the 20th anniversary of Inside Direct Mail, I asked industry experts to shed some light on the trends of today that will have the most impact on direct mail in the next 20 years and beyond. "The shift of purchasing onto the Internet. On one hand, it will produce added direct mail volume as Web sites continue to discover that it's a great tool to increase repeat visits from existing customers. And postal mailers will also continue to find more ways to use Web-acquired postal addresses profitably, leading to more mailable names. But at the

President of Alan Rosenspan & Associates, Alan and his teams have won more than 100 awards for creativity and results, including 18 DMA Echo Awards. He has also been a judge of the Echoes, the Caples, the European Direct Marketing Association (EDMA) Best of Europe Awards and the international judge of the RSVP Awards in New Zealand. Rosenspan is the creator of the "Creative Strategy" course for the Direct Marketing Association, and has led seminars and workshops in 18 different countries, as well as for dozens of corporate clients and associations. He also has been a direct marketing instructor at Bentley College for the

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