DMers Play Professor at Career Day for Students

NEW YORK — Direct and interactive marketing professionals did their part to inspire potential industry recruits Friday during presentations at the 10th annual Direct Marketing Day Foundation Inc. student career forum.

The event was attended by a few hundred college students from schools in the New York area and was held in the auditorium of the McGraw-Hill building here.

“If you're the kind of person who likes to see results, then direct marketing is for you,” said JoAnne Monfradi Dunn, DMDF board member and CEO of Alliant Cooperative Data Solutions, in her introduction to the day's speakers.

First up was Brian Kurtz, executive vice president at Boardroom Inc., who chronicled his start in the industry in 1981 through the present. His main advice on how to excel in direct marketing included the following:

· Treat everyone as a prospect in your direct marketing education.

· Know and love the smartest person in the field and find 12 more like him or her.

· Don't be fooled that the basics make you an expert.

· Study the competition, know the competition, beat the competition.

· Always know what the next step in your progression will be.

“You have to care about the cause,” Kurtz told the students. Get involved and give back, he said.

From the interactive side of the business, CoolSavings Inc. president/CEO Matthew Moog focused on what he called the “4 Ps” of Internet marketing: permission, profiling, privacy and personalization.

“There is a lot of untapped opportunity on the Internet,” he said. But he stressed the need for gaining consumer trust through getting the proper permission to market to them, sending only targeted offers and respecting customer privacy.

Perhaps the most furious note-taking of the day occurred during the final presentation by Heather Frayne, founder of Direct Marketers on Call Inc., a placement agency for freelance direct marketers with a job-coaching division.

Frayne provided tips for young job-seekers on things like resumes and cover letters, but she primarily stressed the importance of research and networking.

During the program, a DMDF award for outstanding service to direct marketing education was presented to Ted Clark, professor of marketing at the State University of New York at New Paltz, who — based on the cheers — had a number of students in attendance.

Of the career forum, Lee Epstein, chairman of the board and president of the DMDF, said that his participation was his way of giving back to the industry that has been so good to him over the years. Epstein is also chairman and founder of Mailmen Inc.

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