Monday, December 5, 2011

Is Direct Marketing Relevant 2?

David Carr, in the Monday December 5, 2011 edition of the New York Times (Business Section), wrote an article entitled, "Print Empire Embraces a New Order."   Mr. Carr discussed Time Inc. selection of Laura Lang as their new CEO.  What's compelling about Ms. Lang's selection is that she does not come from a print background, but instead the former CEO of Digitas.

In an earlier blog, I posed the following question, Is Direct Marketing Still Relevant because their seemed to be the perception that "Direct Marketing" was "different" than digital.  I have maintained that digital IS direct marketing.  The principles and metrics found online comes right out of the playbook of any other direct marketing program.  They include:

  • CTR=leads
  • CPA-conversions
  • CPC=short for per inquiry
Ms. Lang stated in the article that as far back as 5 years ago, "We're seeing clients shift dollars into channels that can get a direct engagement, that can get a direct, accountable experience..."  This mind set runs counter to the historical run of press advertising spend in the print industry.  The article stated, "Traditional media has historically done well by selling inefficiency.  In order to reach those among People magazine's 3.5 million readers who were interested in buying a car or coffee pot, you had to buy an ad that everyone else flipped past." 

Magazines have not been able to calculate the return on ad spend or return on investment because run of press ads were not (and not designed to be) data driven.  Digital Direct Marketing, (as I call it) eliminates this. Accordingly, Ms. Lang will "help magazine publishers be part of a media age built on metrics" just like digital direct marketing has been doing for years.

So the next time someone says is is direct marketing relevant, you have the information to explain their misconception.

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