So despite the fact that June was tough, I do want to say a few words about this year’s Interquest conference in Toronto. Better late than never.
The official attendee count this year was 174, which is an increase from last year. There were also over a dozen sponsors, including the fine folks at GMC Technology. I’ll go into more detail on that in a bit.
Because I used to play in concerts to thousands I’m not often intimidated by an audience, but this was a big room full of grumpy people. I do sometimes wonder what makes printers grumpy. Then I remember their business is in decline, and they have to listen to cocky technology guys like myself go on about how email gets results and print is only one channel in the marketing media mix. Yeah. Ok. I get it.
What? I didn’t notice girls there…
My presentation was pretty short, and I had to talk a bit fast to get it all in. It was the same format as last year, a short presentation followed by a round table discussion.
Here’s me talking proudly about Varibase, trying to rush through a decade of expertise in a few minutes.
This year I had a couple of different questions about media substrate and the impact it might have on response rates. At Varibase we did have some anecdotal evidence that in some cases, luxury items like Jaguar or BMW vehicles or high end perfumes might indeed benefit from a higher quality paper, but we also know that response rates are adversely affected in other cases, and in particular for non-profit organisations, where a high end substrate might give the impression that money is not spent wisely.
The answer is to test. Response rates levers are always difficult to guess at. Don’t guess. Do what Reader’s Digest have done for decades, since they invented direct marketing. Test, test, test all the time. Test everything. Does a round sticker work better than a diamond shaped one? Test and find out. Better a white envelope or a coloured one? Test and find out.
I wish more customers would understand the importance of testing. I know that marketing is the science of making guesses about what people want and how they want to see it, but there’s nothing wrong… nothing wrong at all with getting some hard data, and using it to enhance response rates. Only you can’t do it without testing in your particular field, and with your particular group of prospects and clients. The test doesn’t even have to be large, just statistically significant, which could mean as little as 500 copies of a message treated or delivered differently. (Obviously a little more than that is nice and improves the confidence interval of any results)
So there it is.
If you have a marketing project, feel free to get in touch with me if you need some help with data, concepts, mechanics, technology or just doing research on relational marketing. I’d be glad to help.
Please keep in mind that comments are moderated and
rel="nofollow" is in use. So, please do not use a spammy keyword or a domain as your name, or it will be deleted. Let us have a personal and meaningful conversation instead.