List Broker's Catalog Cover Keys Prospect Mailer

Early results indicate that a direct mail campaign by list broker MCH could surpass last year's effort, which generated 19 new clients for the company.

“We have no solid response numbers for this campaign as of yet that we want to discuss,” said Kirk Chritton, MCH's director of marketing and product development. “But we are getting very positive feedback from the sales department, who tell us that the phones are already ringing and they are booking orders.”

MCH, Sweet Springs, MO, is a list provider for business-to-business and business-to-institution marketers targeting schools, school districts, churches, hospitals, child-care centers, libraries and other institutions. It provides lists for companies of various sizes in verticals such as furniture, healthcare and medical equipment manufacturers and office and janitorial supplies.

It runs a campaign every fall to generate awareness and identify strong sales leads among prospects. This year's mailing went Sept. 18 to 26,500 people at 21,000 companies. Targets were prospects from an in-house list. Most pieces went to companies whose primary targets are schools, though companies that wanted to target churches and libraries were included.

At large companies it markets to directors of marketing or vice presidents of marketing while at smaller companies it targets the owner or CEO.

Though MCH has run an annual fall campaign using a postcard mailer for the past few years, this is the first time the mailer borrows from the images and theme of the annual catalog. Chritton said it took that route because the catalog's cover “gets right to the point in conveying MCH's message,” which is to help clients increase the response rates of their marketing initiatives.

The grade-school theme shows a pencil and lined paper on the cover. The front reads: “Q: What's the point? A: To increase response rates!” A paragraph underneath explains that MCH can help increase response to school mailing lists and offers a test with 10,000 free mailing records and a free enhanced sales potential customer profile.

The back of the card briefly discusses the company's approach to educational direct mail and informs the prospect that the free offers can be received by calling the company or visiting the Web site by Jan. 31, 2003.

Chritton said he could not discuss the campaign's cost but that the fall effort normally shows a positive ROI.

“This campaign is one of our biggest returns on investment,” he said. “The creative is done in-house. It is our top generator of client inquiries.”

The 2000 campaign drew similar results to last year's effort, he said.

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