CDW Corporation

An Inside Look at CDW's Omnichannel Marketing Strategy
December 8, 2016 at 9:28 am

In episode 65 of Total Retail Talks, Jim Garlow, director of marketing operations at CDW, a leading B-to-B retailer of computers, hardware, software and IT solutions, talks about how the company is managing the customer experience through all the different ways it interacts with and markets to its customers. Garlow discusses CDW's strategy for segmenting…

The Rebirth of the Print Catalog
May 27, 2015 at 3:07 pm

There’s been a lot of press lately about the renaissance of the print catalog. While catalogs never truly went away, there was a period there that the “death of the catalog” was more than just a whisper. Brands were ditching print in favor of cheaper, “more effective” digital marketing efforts. That’s no longer the case.…

Maximize the Power of B-to-G Segmentation — Like CDW Did
July 15, 2008

All markets have unique needs, and nowhere is this more obvious than in the business-to-government (B-to-G) market. Regardless of the validity of the premise, B-to-B catalogers must address this issue to meet the expectation of treating the market differently. This perceived difference, plus the perceived value of treating the market niche differently, can lead to premium prices and increased market share. I focused on this premise during a session I presented at last week’s MeritDirect Business Mailer’s Co-op in White Plains, N.Y. The first demonstration of this was in 1990 when National Audio-Visual put out the first “government edition” catalog. It also included the

How CDW Delivers on the Back End
June 24, 2008

Doug Eckrote, senior vice president of operations for the technology products and service provider CDW, provided a blueprint to how CDW — which had $8.1 billion in annual sales last year — handles its product distribution in a session at the recent Internet Retailer Conference & Exhibition in Chicago. Competition=Savings With the abundance of freight options available (FedEx, UPS, DHL, USPS), CDW contracts with them all, Eckrote said, to get customers the best rate. The company’s Web site lists every shipping choice for customers after a purchase, with pricing included. Invariably, customers select the lowest price, Eckrote noted. “If a carrier raises its prices,

How CDW Owns its Market
February 1, 2008

Jim Garlow, director of advertising and marketing operations for technology products and services provider CDW, shares his feelings on matters ranging from why it’s important to be a knowledge source in the tech market to growth tactics for startup catalogers and much more. Catalog Success: Why is it important for CDW to be viewed as a reference source in the tech marketplace? Jim Garlow: We send our account managers through rigorous training because our target audience consists of IT purchasers and chief information officers, both of which are very tech savvy. They know they want somebody on the phone who knows what they’re

About CDW
February 1, 2008

Headquarters: Vernon Hills, Ill. Year founded, catalog launched: 1984 Merchandise: technology products and services for businesses, government and education Annual circulation: 15 million-plus Mailings per year: 75 to 100 12-month housefile: 300,000-plus Retail stores: 1 (at corporate headquarters) # of SKUs: 200,000-plus # of employees: 5,880 Customer demographics: The IT purchaser, generally mid-30s or older and predominantly male Annual sales: $7.8 billion (per estimate by Moody’s Investors Service) Channel breakdown: 73 percent account managers (phone), 27 percent Internet; 66 percent of total sales come from the corporate sector, with the majority coming from the public sector (government); Printer: RR Donnelley, Quad/Graphics List Manager: In-house

All Circuits are Busy
February 1, 2008

Approaching $8 billion in total sales and $559 million in profit for its most recent fiscal year, CDW’s roots are in cataloging in case you forgot. The Vernon Hills, Ill.-based provider of technology products and services for business, government and education was, and still is, a B-to-B cataloger, but a far cry from a mom-and-pop startup. For the past decade, CDW (which stands for the company’s original moniker, Computer Discount Warehouse) recognized growth opportunities within the tech industry and sought a multichannel approach to reaching its customers. Using vehicles such as television, radio, Internet, in-house magazine publications, webinars, seminars, sponsorship events and catalogs,

CDW Thrives in ‘New’ Market
November 20, 2007

With $1.8 billion public sector sales comprising more than a quarter of its total revenue in 2006, multichannel computer products marketer CDW nevertheless was slow to capitalize on one of its biggest resources. Founded in 1984, CDW didn’t aggressively market to federal employees until 1998, missing out on a market that now represents more than 25 percent of the U.S. gross domestic product and more than 4 percent of the world economy. At the Amtower Summit on Selling Products to the Government held in Baltimore earlier this month, CDW’s Director of Advertising and Marketing Operations Jim Garlow outlined how his company broke into

Expert Panel Serves Up Tips and Techniques for B-to-G Marketing
November 20, 2007

At the recent Amtower Summit on Selling Products to the Government held in Baltimore, a panel of multichannel marketing experts provided the audience myriad tips and opinions on how to best find and sell to government employees. The panel consisted of David Powell, vice president of sales and marketing administration at FBC, a company that produces trade show events and conferences at federal government locations throughout the U.S.; Linda Pickering, senior vice president of B-to-B list company MeritDirect; Jim Garlow, director of advertising and marketing operations at computer equipment multichannel marketer CDW; and Peter Long, CEO of MCH, a compiler of business-to-institution (B-to-I) databases

September 1, 2007

NEMOA at 60: ‘Small’ Event Yields Big Ideas This month’s NEMOA conference in Portland, Maine, Sept. 19-21, marks the 60th anniversary for what started — and remains — a small specialized trade group. For many long-time members, NEMOA is all about conferences. The group holds semiannual conferences each March and September designed for catalog/multichannel marketers. “The main value of NEMOA is being able to get together and network,” says 20-year member Dan Walter, president and founder of Eagle America, a woodworking tools and accessories catalog. “You learn tricks of the trade from the people you meet, whether it be from a high-powered speaker