List Vision Conference Changes With the Business

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NEW YORK -- Though the DMA List Vision show is held at a vacation-friendly time of year for a segment of the industry that continues to face hurdles in terms of prosperity and proposed legislation, list professionals can count on having a conference all their own again next year, according to a Direct Marketing Association executive.


When asked yesterday during this year's show whether List Vision would forge on despite the obstacles, DMA senior vice president of education and events Anne A. Schaeffer said, "We're having it! It definitely has a purpose."


Still, that doesn't mean it might not undergo a makeover. In fact, some new things were tested this time out.


One was a new track system featuring basic-level sessions as well as what was called List 201 Master Classes, which were more advanced. Also added this year was the Executive Summit for executive-level list professionals only.


David O. Schwartz, president/CEO of 21st Century Marketing, Farmingdale, NY, participated in the summit and had no complaints.


"It was great," Schwartz said. "Standing room only and lots of strong opinions."


He said it was a chance for industry professionals to get together in the absence of clients and let ideas fly. Some of the things tossed around were key threats to the industry, solutions and prognostication.


"There will be consolidation," Schwartz said, though perhaps not on the scale that some in the industry may suggest.


One step that the DMA will take with an eye on the future is more research beyond what attendees of the show think.


"We will do outreach to non-attendees," Schaeffer said.


As for this year's show, registration was not down dramatically from last year, said Linda Huntoon, chair of the DMA's List and Database Council and executive vice president of Direct Media Inc., Greenwich, CT.


The council chose what she called a more "user-friendly venue," having the show at the Marriott Marquis in Times Square as opposed to the Waldorf-Astoria where the show was held the past two years.


Huntoon, whose tenure as chair of the council ends in October, said she would be surprised if List Vision didn't return next year.


"[DMA chairman] John Greco is very list and database friendly," she said. "Putting on this show is a lot of work but ... this year's content is extraordinarily good."


Kristen Bremner covers list news, insert media, privacy and fundraising for DM News and DMNews.com. To keep up with the latest developments in these areas, subscribe to our daily and weekly e-mail newsletters by visiting www.dmnews.com/newsletters


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