Polk Seeks New Markets With RMP

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The Polk Co., Detroit, has chosen Response Media Products, Atlanta, to manage its Life Transitions list and market it to the packaged goods, retail and promotions markets that the data provider traditionally doesn't reach.

Contracting to a third-party list manager is unusual but not unprecedented for Polk, which also markets its data cap products through an outside manager.

"We weren't really considering alternative media areas. [Response Media] really approached us," said Polk associate product manager Carla Vincent. "They had partnerships with nontraditional direct marketers that could benefit from the data.''

Response Media (RMP), which has partnered with Polk on past marketing projects, will manage 10 of the 14 elements in the file of self-reported consumer life intention data: intend to move, buy a house, remodel a home, get married, have a baby, graduate, retire, purchase a major appliance, change jobs and start a business. The insurance, financial, automotive and hi-tech elements will continue to be managed by Polk. All data is gathered from product registration cards and Polk's Survey of America mailings to more than a million households each month.

RMP will use its proprietary database to identify companies, brand managers and marketing directors for the targeting of each of the 10 data elements. For the have-a-baby element, RMP vice president Herb Torgersen said two major supermarket chains have expressed an interest in the data for their baby club mailings and mentioned home supply and toy stores, appliance dealers and real estate agents that would value the other elements.

With the time-sensitive nature of the data, he said retailers tend to purchase larger list quantities over a short period than direct marketers who prefer to test before they buy.

"[Retailers] know to buy those products is a captured life span,'' Torgersen said.

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