Cataloging is Rocket Science
July 10, 2014

Over the years, I've come to realize that in many ways cataloging is rocket science. Here are four reasons why:

Catalog Testing: Whys and Hows
February 11, 2014

It's very tempting to skip testing in a catalog. However, I've seen too many ‘great marketing instinct’ and ‘common wisdom’ ideas crash and burn. It's much better to test first.

Learn From Your Competitors to Keep Ahead
December 11, 2013

Customer benefits are what it's all about. What makes your brand best for your customers needs to be woven throughout all your editorial, product copy, page heads, design and photography. First, define what makes you the best at XYZ. Second, define how to make it clear to your customer. It's not just about design differences. If you can make a true case for how you're different and why that's good for your customers, that's what no competitor can copy.

Why Sharper Image Embedded a ‘Buy Now’ Mobile Capability Into its Catalog
November 12, 2013

In an effort to make it simpler for consumers to simultaneously browse its print catalog and research and buy from their mobile devices, Sharper Image embedded a “Buy  Now” capability into its holiday preview catalog. The catalog is chock-full of electronic, recreation, fitness and travel products, and was sent to 4 million households and businesses on Nov. 4.

‘Clean’ Design: Lean, Mean Selling Machine or Buying Barrier?
September 18, 2013

‘Clean’ design typically means more negative space (aka white space), minimal copy, larger but fewer images per product, sans-serif type, often smaller point sizes and sometimes gray type instead of black. To see if clean is for you, let's look at where it works and where it doesn't.

Printer Lead Times Do Matter
August 21, 2013

There's more to obtaining print bids than price. Printer lead times should be part of the mix. For example, when mail tapes and creative files are due to the printer should be considered. The shorter the deadline when mail files are due to the printer the better. This enables catalogers to include more recent buyers in the mailing.

Don't Give Up Your Order Form Just Yet
July 23, 2013

With the help of The Dingley Press, we conducted a study to determine how many catalogs it prints that still include some type of order form. We found that almost half of our fairly large sample size have no inside ink-jet or order form insert, but they do have an order form printed on-page in the catalog. Another 18.5 percent use a bind-in order form. In summary, 71.5 percent of the catalogs we surveyed use an order form; only 28.5 percent have eliminated the order form entirely.

How Catalogs Drive Your Business
June 14, 2013

The printed catalog is the main driver of traffic to the web. However, with all of the other touchpoints available to consumers today, how do we really know the impact of catalog mailings on web sales? And why do we give so much credit to the print catalog? There are a few reasons why:

The 2011 Postal Rate Increase: An Internet Marketer's Midwinter Night's Dream
September 27, 2010

As an online marketer, I want to thank Mr. Postmaster General and the honorable members of the Postal Regulatory Commission. I cannot wait until you raise postage rates come January. Now some people may not agree with me, but I applaud your efforts to consistently raise postage rates.