Five Ways to Bring Your Catalog/Multichannel Business in Tune With 2008
No reason why catalogers can’t do a better job packaging their goods to make them look unique and special even if you can find the same things hunting around elsewhere online, in catalogs or at the mall. Catalogers have the ability to build the kind of cult/loyalty following that Brighton has among its faithful.
5. Go postal.
No, not in the morbid, creepy sense, of course. Assign someone in-house to become an expert on all things postal. Gene Del Polito, the Association for Postal Commerce’s relentless president, for years has beat his head against a wall to get catalogers to become wiser to postal matters. As brilliant a guy as Gene is, it just seems that few listen to this battle cry.
Too many catalogers rely on their printers to keep them up to date on postal matters. We named the column launched in Catalog Success last year that Gene wrote (and has since stepped aside in favor of his former colleague Kathy Siviter, whose first column will appear in our March issue) “Understanding Postal” for a reason: Catalogers by in large — and there certainly are exceptions — just don’t get postal. Wrong time for that.
There’s way too much going on in postal that oh-so-directly affects your bottom line with regard to changes in postal rates, rules, regulations, laws, you name it, that you can’t afford not to have at least one staffer who keeps up to speed on postal matters on a daily basis.
Although these five suggestions are listed in order of priority, they should all be top priority in 2008. They’re crucial, but they’re hardly for brain surgeons. Any catalog CEO is capable of implementing them if he or she hasn’t already. Then again, you have plenty on your plate running your day-to-day business just to keep afloat in these tough times, so I leave you with a little advice more typical of that from a trade conference: See if you can take action on at least one of these. Then take it from there and try the others. You’ll be glad you did.