No need for cold mail-cold turkey

I was interested to read that Toyota is to drop its cold direct marketing programme (MW October 10). This is an interesting approach, but begs the question of what happens when the leads dry up. In the short term, a switch of resources to the prospect and current customer databases may well be beneficial, but the “leaky bucket” will catch up with them in the end. I have received a number of Toyota packs in the past and found that, in common with most mailings from car manufacturers, they are glossy and expensive to produce. If the quoted response figure of 0.5 per cent is to be believed, they generate a poor return indeed for the investment.

But ditching the direct marketing lead-generation programme seems a little extreme. Companies could do worse than to look towards collaborative marketing as a means of reducing the cost of lead-generation. A consumer card deck, response catalogue or targeted door-drop, for instance, can give an advertiser access to several hundred-thousand targeted individuals at a fraction of the cost of a solus mailing, giving them the opportunity to follow up with more expensive mail packs, videos or a phone call from the local dealer.

Peter Webb

Chairman

Response Direct Publishing

London SW1

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