Eden Lane Claims a Top Spot in ParadyszMatera's Growth Report

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Relative newcomer Eden Lane catalog made its debut on ParadyszMatera's list universe growth report in the No. 1 spot in the gifts/collectibles category for the first quarter of 2004, knocking Tiffany & Co. to No. 2.

List brokerage ParadyszMatera maintains a database of 12-month list universe counts on 73,000 properties through its research division. The firm ranks the top 40 catalogs by largest percentage increase each quarter in the home, apparel and gifts/collectibles categories. ParadyszMatera generates its MarketTrends consumer catalog reports quarterly through its proprietary MarketRelevance direct mail promotion-tracking tool.

In just one year since the list went on the market, Eden Lane saw 217.9 percent growth for first-quarter 2004 with a total of 94,682 last-12-month buyers.

"We are flattered to be on the top of anyone's growth list," Eden Lane president/owner Larry Levine said. "Our focus is to continually advance the business in an aggressive yet calculated manner."

The catalog, which features gifts and novelty apparel, was named after the street that Levine grew up on in Long Island. The business is in Blacklick, OH. The catalog began mailing in June 2002 and mailed six time last year. It plans to mail eight times this year.

After its first mailing fell short of expectations, the company brought in Jerry Schillinger of Schillinger Direct to provide consulting, circulation, database and Internet services.

"While we are aggressive in our efforts to grow, I have learned it is best to take a measured approach with a close eye on profitability," Schillinger said of the catalog's mailing strategy. "We are here for the long haul."

The Eden Lane file is 72 percent female with an average unit of sale of $60. It is managed by Names and Addresses Inc., Buffalo Grove, IL.

As was the case last quarter, the largest overall file in gifts/collectibles for Q1 2004 was Collections Etc. It ranked 26th among increases with 1.7 million last-12-month names, up 17.4 percent over Q1 2003.

In the other two categories, the top spot did not change from Q4 2003.

Brylane Home Kitchen retained the No. 1 ranking in the home category, up 129.6 percent to 400,908 names for the first quarter from 174,600 last year. The file is 98 percent female with an average age of 50, average income of $50,000 and average unit of sale of $60. It is managed by Millard Group Inc., Peterborough, NH.

Of all the home catalogs, Improvements again was the largest overall list with 929,700 names. It ranked 13th among increases, growing 30.5 percent over Q1 2003.

The biggest list universe growth in apparel was Kenneth Cole New York, with a 403.5 percent increase for Q1 2004 over that quarter last year, rising from 10,479 to 52,763 names. The file is 75 percent female with an average age range of 25-40 and average unit of sale of $175. Mokrynski & Associates, Hackensack, NJ, manages the file.

Once again, the largest overall file in apparel for Q1 2004 was JC Penney Women's Apparel and Accessories Buyers. It ranked 33rd among increases with 2.7 million last-12-month names, up 16.4 percent.

Other findings:

· Total 12 month active universes for the gifts/collectibles category grew by 456,000 names, up 2.4 percent from 4Q 2003. The slight rebound was led Personal Creations (with 246,000 additional names), RedEnvelope (with 94,000 more names) and Collections Etc. (up 91,000 names).

· 22 percent of unique gifts/collectibles efforts offered at least one purchase incentive (free shipping, discounts or deferred payment). This is down 7 percent from the total incentive usage tracked for all of 2003, but identical to the 22 percent seen in 1Q 2003. This consistent seasonal decline indicates that the category will most likely see higher incentive use as the year progresses.

· Total housefile universe for the home catalog market fell 2.5 percent (452,000 names). This decline comes from small losses across a number of lists and notable losses from Williams-Sonoma's Pottery Barn and namesake cooking files. Also, 275,000 names were added by the Petals Decorative Accents list, which returned to the market after its re-launch.

· Free shipping remains the least popular incentive among home catalogers, representing a mere 3 percent of all in-category promotions tracked in 1Q 2004. More popular are deferred payment (8 percent) and full discount offers (7 percent).

· Total 12 month active universes for the apparel catalog market fell by 1.2 percent (57.7 million in 1Q 2004 vs. 58.4 million in 4Q 2003), driven largely by losses in women's apparel catalogs (200,000 name declines came from Newport News and Spiegel). Victoria's Secret and L.L. Bean offset somewhat the overall decline by gaining 205,000 and 222,000 names respectively in 1Q 2004.

· The first three months of 2004 saw an upturn in incentive use among apparel catalogers. Free shipping grew by 3 percent (18 percent for 1Q 2004 vs. 15 percent in 2003), deferred payment tracked 4 percent higher (12 percent vs. 8 percent in 2003) and discounts were up 5 percent (17 percent vs. 12 percent in 2003).

More information can be obtained at www.paradyszmatera.com.


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