2018 Year in Review, aka Cats & Bacon

Every year, Catalog University co-founders Sarah Fletcher and Janie Downey sort through TONS of direct marketing pieces to pull out anything they find intriguing that we can all learn from. They call this talk “Cats & Bacon” because you just can’t look away – like when someone mentions Cats. Or Bacon. Yum. What are the […]

Finding Meaningful Sales Attribution

Pre-internet, everyone talked about being top of mind. Ads made you top of mind with the customer, and no one knew how to attribute it to ad spend. “Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted; the trouble is I don’t know which half.” John Wanamaker (1838-1922) Attribution is a mysterious thing. You have […]

2017 Year in Review, aka “Cats & Bacon”

Every year, Catalog University co-founders, Sarah Fletcher and I (Janie Downey), sort through several TONS of direct marketing pieces we received in the mail to find the best and the worst to share with you. We call this talk “Cats & Bacon” because there’s always so much to like – just like Cats & Bacon. What […]

DESIGN MATTERS!

Design matters. I believe this with all my heart. In my 30 years of working with brands large, small and in-between have only deepened my belief in this simple statement. Unfortunately, there’s too much bland design in the marketplace today… design that could and should be so much better. I’m talking about the kind of […]

Christmas is 26 Fridays Away. Really.

It’s July and the Hallmark Channel is introducing the 2015 Christmas Ornament so you know it’s time for your holiday marketing checklist.  You should be planning for a great 4th quarter (or 5th quarter if you are in the gift business) because the general outlook is in your favor. Consumer Confidence is up, and consumers […]

Are Catalogs on a Death March?

Really? Is anyone still asking this question? If you are working in the Omni-channel world I’m sure you almost smirk when hearing this question. It’s no secret catalogs simply work. Has the role of a catalog changed? Absolutely. While it still acts as a transactional tactic it’s role as a brand engagement tool is undeniable. […]

How one company grew sales from $2.2 mil to $80 mil in 3 years

Alex and Ani was founded as a jewelry-making company in 2004, based in Newport, RI. Giovanni Feroce became CEO in 2010, and in the past three years, has helped sales increase from $2.2 million to $80M, with on-line sales going from $200,000 to $30M. A&A now has 50 retail stores and 874 employees. Giovanni calls […]

The Glossy and the Gritty

One of the most thought provoking presentations at the fall NEMOA directXchange conference was Andy James of New Pig. If you are not in the market for industrial absorbents (pigs) you may never have been introduced to the New Pig Catalog. As a judge for the MultiChannel Merchant Awards I have been lucky enough to […]

Loyalty is dead. Actually it never existed. You need fans.

Everyone talks about customer loyalty as though it is a magical quality that some brands just get. That’s silly. Apple didn’t “create” loyalty. They created a collection of products that work together seamlessly. These products look great and are crazy intuitive. I own multiple Apple products, but am I loyal? Yes and No. If Apple […]

Change B2B into T2T and really engage your customers

  I keep hearing “…but what about B2B?” like it exists in a completely separate universe. B2B is not building to building. Businesses are run by people, inspired by people and ultimately for people to use in their work life. The guy in the suit leaning back in his chair at the meeting is going […]