Data Minding

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List services companies know each of their lists inside out and sideways. So how should service providers talk to a client about getting down to specifics and using their service?

Accentuate "less is more"

"It's not carpet-bombing, it's laser-guided bombing," says John Slaney, COO of New York-based Global Document Solutions, a supplier of integrated business
communications and document process services. "You're not dropping thousands of pieces of paper and hoping for a four percent response. You're sending out a select number of pieces with highly tailored information. It gets higher readership and response."

Propose solutions and track results

Chris Consorte, chief executive officer of Garden City, NY-based Integrated Direct and Integrated Interactive, started his business specializing in list services but found he had to diversify out of necessity. "In my experience," he says, "clients are looking for firms to come up with the solution. They don't want to waste time with guesswork. They want [you] to report on results and track that everything is done correctly."

Dare to be different

"I'll always present something, one thing, that takes them out of their comfort zone," says Consorte. "More often than not, about 70 percent of the time, the client will take it."

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