Is direct marketing evil?

What’s your first thought when you hear the word "marketing"?  What about "direct marketing"? 

Evildirectmarketing_3Those of us in the trade probably think of various techniques we use to sell products and services, get donations, votes, etc.  However, those outside the trade have a very negative reaction to "marketing" and "direct marketing" — they think it’s evil !

How did direct marketing get such a bad reputation? 

Look at your email inbox or your spam folder and you will find the answer.  Look at all that junk!  To a lesser extent, open your mailbox and look at all that mail you that goes straight to the recycle bin (you recycle, right?).  And all those unwanted faxes and phone calls.

It’s a waste of time to have to deal with and discard all that junk.  We are bombarded with this junk all day every day and we are sick and tired of it.  So, it’s no wonder that people think "evil" when they hear "direct marketing"?

But is direct marketing really evil?

At its core, direct marketing is a process of matching products and services with people who need them.  When done right — it’s delightful.  For example, Amazon does a fantastic job of making recommendations.  Every so often, I get an email announcing a new book they think I would be interested in.  You know what?  They are right most of the time and I would have never heard of that book (nor bought it) otherwise.  I get new knowledge and they get revenue.

It’s the people using direct marketing that decide whether it’s good or bad.  Direct marketing can be very good for the merchant and the buyer when done right.  Everyone’s better off when direct marketing is used responsibly.

I think everyone knows this.  Other than a minority of low-lifes, everyone wants to do the right thing and use direct marketing responsibly.  So, why don’t they all do the right thing?  I believe it’s because it’s just too hard today to do it right.  It’s really hard to find the people that need your service.  It’s really hard to reach them in the right way.  The knowhow and the tools are not available or accessible.

At NextMark, we’re trying to change that. Our mission is to help you "reach your market" and are bringing you innovative new tools, such as the mailing lists search tool.  We want to make it easy for you to do the right thing and use responsible direct marketing. 

We are trying to spread the word. Please help us create the next generation of marketing!

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