Making Salt and Socks Exciting
August 9, 2010

Imaginative merchants have all worked hard to turn rather ordinary items into extraordinary “must haves.” Just how alluring is your product line? And how will you keep luring your customers into your brand?

The Power of a Jolt!
July 12, 2010

Mindful merchants know that one of their main roles as brand builders is customer motivation. They know just when the power of a gentle nudge (via strategic cross-sells, meaningful upsells or properly placed point-of-purchase teasers) or a more forceful jolt (you must have this!) is necessary to prompt a sale. In today’s selling environment, with consumers more cautious than ever about their spending, merchants are required to use their motivational jolt skills more often.

How to Create Intrigue for Your Products
June 29, 2010

To “live curious” as a merchant means to dig deeper, pay more attention to details and patiently sift through the mundane to find the remarkable. And sometimes it means making the mundane simply remarkable.

How to Choose the Right Design Team for Your Catalog or Direct Mail Program
May 10, 2010

Choose designers who specifically know the mail order market. Catalogs/mailers accustomed to generating sales via mail/internet ordering are a very different animal from a branding vehicle. They may look similar, but companies that create mail order catalogs and direct mail know exactly how to leverage creative that not only builds their brands, but also sells product. What looks simple is actually highly specialized and technical.

How to Survive a Recession
December 16, 2008

Someone asked me last week, "What are the best ways to survive a recession?" Without thinking much, I responded, “Love the customers you got!" As I began to reflect on my knee-jerk answer, I realized just how important it is for B-to-B catalogers to do just that.

6 Tips to Increase Your Productivity in 2009
December 9, 2008

As many catalog/multichannel B-to-B and B-to-C marketers do their annual planning and budgeting for 2009 right about now, I suspect many are having a difficult time given the events of the past six months. Who really knows what 2009 will bring?

Now Is the Time to Review Outsourcing Opportunities
December 2, 2008

Given the tough economic times and sales levels that are most likely below plan, most B-to-B catalog managers are looking to reduce overhead costs without affecting revenue-driving activities. Much of the “low-hanging fruit” has been had when it comes to cost savings, and I submit that now is the time that many of you must face “significant structural change” as an option. Inevitably, your discussions will lead you to consider outsourcing noncore functions in your company.
The first question you might be asking is, “What’s a noncore function?” The answer varies for every company, but generally, I consider noncore functions to be anything that