Friday, November 23, 2007

Direct Marketing?


It's that time of year where companies inundate us with their catalogs, with the hopes we'll spend our hard-earned money with them. I'm okay with getting the giant Victoria's Secret holiday panty catalog, because I'm sure I'll wear the cover's hot pink "naughty Santa" outfit everywhere I go from now until the end of the year. I'm even okay with the occasional Harry and David catalog since I did order Moose Crunch from them several years ago. But I draw the line when I get a catalog to something that just does not apply to me. Not. Even. Remotely.


I don't know how I end up on some of the mailing lists I'm on, but in this era of getting and staying "green," I wish some companies would just save their money. Here are just a few of the catalogs I've received in the last week:

The Catholic Company- I knew I shouldn't have ordered that statue of St. Joseph when my mom was trying to sell the house last Winter. We're not Catholic. We've never been Catholic. But my mom really needed something to help get the house sold and if something as simple as burying St. Joe upside-down in the backyard gives a little inspiration, I was willing to give it a shot. Now The Catholic Company won't leave me alone. Maybe that's the penance I must pay for not being a follower in the first place.

Plow and Hearth- Products for the home, garden and hearth, which sound very nice if you have a home, garden and/or hearth. I live in an apartment, I don't have a yard and my fireplace is encased in wood paneling, circa 1972.

Cabela's Fly Fishing Catalog- Last time I checked, I don't like hiking, I don't like camping and I certainly don't like fly fishing. Even the people for whom I might buy gifts that like hiking and camping are too busy drinking at the end of a trek to fly fish. I've never stepped inside Cabela's, and have heard their famed "mountain of dead things" within the store is a little creepy. 

The Alzheimer's Store- Complete with products to help promote independence and memory, along with helping out pesky incontinence, The Alzheimer's Store is the perfect place to order gifts that are new every time you look at them (presumably because you've forgotten you've received them in the first place?). For the life of me, I can not figure out why I would get this catalog in the mail.

Having worked in a past life at a direct marketing advertising agency, even I am schooled enough in the trade to know that you should research your mailing list. If the profiles do not fit what you're selling, then you lose money by marketing to them. The practice of marketing is not rocket science. This holiday season I have but one request for the many companies trying to make a buck: Save your money plus save a couple of trees in the process by sparing me unnecessary junk. 

2 comments:

kris said...

Of course you don't remember how you got on the Alzheimer's Catalog list, 90% of the clientèle don't remember opting into that list.

Starbucks has built their entire business model on having Alzheimer patients as their primary clientèle:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z9iMgSNrwv4

Holly said...

HAAAAA! Lewis Black is a god. Not a full-blown god, but more of a demi-god.

He's damn funny. And now I know that Starbucks was made for old people.