Lists and direct mail: Experts like solo mail, financial and fundraising in 2005

As the Hispanic list market grows, marketers are increasingly using lists to reach Latino consumers. What expectations do list brokers and list managers have for this year? Where do they expect the most growth? What are the main challenges they face? Portada® talked to two experts on Hispanic lists and direct mail marketing. This is what they had to say.

Question: What should be done to get more lists on the Hispanic market?
Rick Blume (Vice President of Multicultural Marketing, 21st Century Marketing, Farmingdale, NY): “Marketers/List owners who have lists that are not on the market need to get over their fears that something will happen to their lists if they put them on the market—that they will be misused, that their competitors will get hold of them, or that it will hurt their own marketing efforts.While there are no guarantees, it is unlikely that anything will happen.List owners get to say who uses the lists, plus tests have indicated that it actually helps your marketing efforts when others use your list – excluding competitors, of course – because it gets them in a response mode, i.e. the more they respond the more likely they will respond again. Another reason they don't put their lists on the market is because list owners whose names are not on the market think their names are unique.That's obviously not the case.List owners need to understand that their names are also on other lists and that the difference is that other list owners are receiving list rentalrevenue while they're not.”

Tim Murphy (Senior Account Executive, MKTG Services, Newtown, PA): “I believe that Hispanic list owners should be more open to the idea of putting their files on the market.They need to be educated about the potential for ancillary income from theirhouse files.”

Q: Do you think marketers realize the value of lists in terms of reaching Hispanic Hispanic consumers?
Rick Blume: “Some do, but most do not.We see this in all the list negotiations that are required to get the order.What's funny is that the list costsare the smallest costs of a direct mail package. Marketers still want to bring the price down or they won't take the list. This suggests that they do not put a premium on Hispanic lists.On the other hand, some Hispanic marketers can't get enough Spanish-speaking names.”

Tim Murphy: “Ithink everyone has realized the potential that's out there. They are either gearing up to get involved in the Hispanic market or have doneso already.”

Q: What sector of the Hispanic direct mailing industry do you see growing the most in 2005 (shared mail, solo mail, catalogs, etc.)?
Rick Blume: “Solo mail seems to be growing the most.In that sector, fundraising, especially Catholic fundraising, is growingmore than the others.”

Tim Murphy: “Solo mailings have the biggest growth potential. Catalogers are slow to get on board with versions of catalogs specifically geared toward the Hispanic market.”

Q: In what sector do you see the most demand for Hispanic lists in 2005 (financial, entertainment and media, consumer packaged goods, education, etc.)?
Rick Blume: “Besides fundraising, I see financial marketers, especially credit card marketers, growing the most.”

Tim Murphy:“Financial.”

Q: Can you compare, in general terms, the response rates to Hispanic lists compared to the general market?
Rick Blume: “In general terms, you will receive anywhere from a 25% to 100% increase in response from a Spanish direct mailing to the Hispanic market compared to the same mailing in the general market.”

Tim Murphy:“The response rates forHispanic lists tend to be a little higher due to the fact that the Hispanic market is not receiving as much direct mail as the general market.”

Q: Spanish-language magazines have a higher proportion of newsstand sales than general market magazines, which are generally more subscription-based. To what extent is this a hindrance to growth in the Hispanic list market?
Rick Blume:“I wouldn't say this is much of a hindrance to growth in the Hispanic market because there is nothing anyone can do about it. It is what it is. Many Hispanic direct marketers use Spanish language print media, as well as TV and other Spanish language media, to grow their business.Yes, if there were more Spanish language magazines that had larger subscription bases, there would be more Spanish speaking lists on the market. For those already on the market, there would be more names to rent. However, the economics (and even the lack of lists to promote compared to the general market) do not dictate that.”

Tim Murphy:“A considerable hindrance! Spanish language magazines should make more ofan effort to reach their prospective readership via direct mail with offers, like reduced newsstand pricing. This wouldgreatly increase subscriber rates as well as add to the lifetime valueof a customer.”


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