Tuesday, January 16, 2007

The DM dilemma

The more we talk about Direct Marketing, the more we seem to be confused. This is primarily because most of us have still not attemped to understand what Direct Marketing is. Most of us look at DM from two angles...

a. A creative work with an address label pasted on it

b. A clean address (without the usual mistakes!!) printed on a label pasted to a pack containing some information

Now, which one of these is right? Is DM just the creative? Or is DM mailing list lead?

The answer is simple. It is a combination of both. The following are the most important things that would differentiate between a good and mediocre DM.

1. The database - The mailing list (in layman's terms)

2. The offer - What are you offering the target audience ?

3. The relevance - Are you trying to sell dating services to a monk? How relevant is your offer?

4. The creative - The presentation

5. The timing - There is an obvious difference between sending an offer for an Airconditioner at the starting of the summer and the end of it

6. The vehicle - Regular mail / e-mail / Web / Blog / Personal contact etc.

7. The response - How was the response? respose (Vs.) conversion

Only when you are able to tick off all seven you would be able to claim that you did a successful DM exercise. Even one cross would mean that your exercise was not as successful as you meant it to be.

So next time you see an amazing DM creative, wait till you take a look at the other six parameters till you rejoice.

Remember DM is a multi-dimensional stream, your approach has to be correct across the board to be successful.

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