What is Direct Marketing?

Drayton Bird, Vice Chairman, O & M Direct world wide, defines it as “any activity whereby you reach your prospect or customer (read doctor) directly as an individual – or they respond to you directly.”

DM is not simply another form of advertising. It’s a way of marketing. Advertising can initiate a sale but it cannot close it. DM has the capacity to close the sale and build a dialogue.

DM is like operating a store in print and then managing it. (Dick Shaver)

DM and sales promotion (SP) offer the twin benefits of helping the marketing manager establish a cause-and-effect relationship between her/his actions and results on the bottom-line, and offering advanced data bases which can be exploited to target promotional activity of any kind at an entirely fine-tuned audience.

At a recent seminar organized by MAA Communication in Bangalore, the Regional Director of Kobs & Draft Worldwide’s division K. D Asia Ms. Deborah Coulson spoke on how DM is different from general advertising. The preconceived notion that they – advertising and DM are mutually exclusive is not valid.

Relationship Marketing

One –time communications does not build a relationship. We have to get married to our customers in DM. We have to monitor purchases of the customers between two sales points. The amount generated per customer is calculated. Suppose it is 100 Rupees at a profit margin of 25 p.c. We have made Rs 20 per customer. If the DM programme costs Rupees 5 per mailing, still it is worth.