Setting Your Goal: A Roadmap to Success
Whether you’re a large cataloger, a nonprofit or a small family-owned business, your catalog will have sales goals to achieve. The tools and methodology used may differ, but the steps necessary during the planning process don’t. The basic roadmap to success:
1. Review past product sales history of units sold, gross profit and gross margin to identify products worth selling again.
2. Review list performance and sales by customer segment to identify lists worth repeating and list categories or segments worth testing or expanding.
3. Determine the availability of inventory.
4. Investigate the availability of additional lists, list categories or segments that match your demographic profile and historical prospecting successes.
5. Expand product offerings with new, but similar merchandise; consider kits and combos and/or suitable “two-for” offers.
6. Identify and feature your primary products to emphasize along with sub-feature products and products to line list.
7. Identify your optimal mailing dates based on seasonality.
8. Determine your circulation plan.
9. Project your sales by product, circulation plan and list productivity.
10. Refine, adjust, compromise various components of these steps. Then project sales again until a reasonable plan emerges that looks capable of achieving the target sales goal for the campaign.
As each of the aforementioned steps progresses, marketing and merchandising enhance the result of the other through ongoing communication, bouncing ideas and preliminary conclusions off one another. Each group is working toward the same goal, but with a different “set of lenses,” so this collaborative effort will bring concerns and opportunities to the fore that benefit the bottom line.