Most DMers Stumble When Moving Online, Speaker Says

ORLANDO, FL — Moving an offline direct marketing business to the Internet is a difficult task that few DMers do well, said Terry D. Jukes, CEO of business-to-business catalog consultancy B2B Direct Marketing Intelligence Inc., at the DMA's Direct Marketing to Business conference here yesterday.

“There's a lot of talk, a lot of information, but very, very few companies that I see are doing it right,” he said.

His remarks came during the “How Offline and Online Catalogs Work Together to Increase Revenues and Profits” session. He warned that unless a business understands its off-line operations, mistakes will be carried forward. Also, conducting an off-line “audit” as you move online is time well spent.

“We see many people who go into the online world when they don't really understand their legacy business effectively,” Dukes said. “Get your statistics and your numbers and your details lined up so that you can then begin to ask yourself, 'OK, if that's the way it is in the offline world, what is the process by which that's going to change as I move into my online world?' “

“Know your customer acquisition costs to the penny” was the first critical success factor he presented. They must be known by lead offer, product, market segment, sales channel and cross channel, and offline and online variations should be compared.

“Know your customer lifetime value” was another success factor, followed by “Know your file and your universe.”

He continued by saying that many people have a universal contact strategy, but that it's most often by default.

“For each group of customers or market segment that you have in your business, you will want to form an integrated contact strategy to ensure that you're not tripping over yourself with various marketing efforts,” he said.

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