Which is First? The Chicken (Product) or the Egg (Marketing)?
So to answer Robespierre’s question about what products work best in a catalog, look for products to market that you are passionate about. Sure there are product categories like apparel that lend themselves to catalog marketing. But some very successful catalogs mine a small yet powerful niche market. Find something that isn’t readily available elsewhere and has some uniqueness to it. Then make sure you can purchase it and sell it with the right margin that can sustain a catalog business. Look for enough products that have an affinity to each other so you can have depth and breadth of product lines in your catalog.
Or maybe if you don’t have many products, find something unique, and then market it direct, build up a database of customers and then expand your product line as you grow -- the classic kitchen table mail order entrepreneur approach.
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Jim Gilbert has had a storied career in direct and digital marketing resulting in a burning desire to tell stories that educate, inform, and inspire marketers to new heights of success.
After years of marketing consulting, Jim decided it was time to “put his money where his mouth was" and build his own e-commerce company, Premo Natural Products, with its flagship product, Premo Guard Bed Bug & Mite Sprays. Premo in its second year is poised to eclipse 100 percent growth.
Jim has been writing for Target Marketing Group since 2006, first on the pages of Catalog Success Magazine, then as the first blogger for its online division. Jim continues to write for Total Retail.
Along the way, Jim has led the Florida Direct Marketing Association as their Marketing Chair and then three-term President, been an Adjunct Professor of Direct and Digital marketing for Miami International University, and created a lecture series, “The 9 Immutable Laws of Social Media Marketing,” which he has presented across the country at conferences and universities.