Ya Gotta Start Somewhere, Step One: Getting the Most Out of Your Catalog Printer
A few points to add to last week’s article on where to start, then on to today’s topic.
The good news is, there are many places to learn about catalog marketing.
Earlier in my direct marketing career, when I switched to the specialization of catalogs, I found Catalog Success magazine to be an enormous resource. There also are a lot of great books on general direct marketing, but not many about cataloging. The one book I found, which has become the go-to guide for me, is “How to Profit Through Catalog Marketing” by Katie Muldoon (NTC Business Books, 1995). While it’s currently out of print, you can buy a used copy from most online booksellers.
I’m also an advocate of education in general, which is why last year I started teaching direct marketing at Miami International University. As it happened, in 1993 after I sold my publishing company, it was New York University’s Direct Marketing Certificate program that really jump-started my career in direct. Currently, there are a number of universities that offer courses in direct marketing, right up to an MBA level.
Also, regarding my mention of the Direct Marketing Association, there are local chapters in many cities throughout the country. There are some other mail order clubs, too. Also, there is an organization called the National Mail Order Association (www.nmoa.org) that can help as well.
Getting Print Bids From Catalog Printers:
If you look at a catalog printer’s price quote, and you’re not already in the catalog business, you may be awfully confused. I know I was the first time I got a catalog print quote.
The thing is, with a catalog printer you’re not just getting a quote on printing alone. The most efficient catalog printers — and the only ones from which you should get quotes — also do the following:
Jim Gilbert has been creating direct marketing programs that drive superior ROI for almost 30 years. Fluent in consumer or B-to-B, creative, operations, and analytics, he marries the strategic and tactical sides of direct and social media marketing in a seamless fashion that gets results. He's CEO of a multidiscipline direct marketing agency, Gilbert Direct Marketing, Inc., which focuses on direct mail, catalogs, DRTV, telemarketing, print, alternative direct marketing media and social media marketing. Jim has been involved in start-ups, expansions and turnarounds, and is an expert in helping multichannel marketers get to the "next level." He's a former adjunct professor, teaching direct marketing at Miami International University, and is President of the Board of Directors of the Florida Direct Marketing Association. Jim loves to talk direct marketing, and has done many lectures on direct and social media marketing.