Editor's Note: DR Marketers Must Choose the Future1 Dec, 2013 By: Thomas Haire Response
“Change is the law of life. And those who look only to the past or the present are certain to miss the future.” — John F. Kennedy
In recent days, I’ve been immersed in coverage of the 50th anniversary of the tragic assassination of President Kennedy in Dallas. I’ve always found the story fascinating. It’s part of my personal affinity for the history of the mid-late 20th century in America.
But in watching and/or reading many different shows and items, I also began to look at the many historic quotes attributed to the 35th president, both from political speeches and his impressive books. The quote above struck me as pertinent to our business.
All one needs to do is flip through the pages of this issue of Response and compare it to an issue from three, five or 10 years ago. Change is everywhere.
From the power of retail for traditional direct response products to the power of direct response for products and services that once considered this form of marketing “taboo,” the entire business seems to have been flipped on its head. Add in new technologies that some believe are minimizing the impact of television advertising — but really are incredible extensions when used properly by the best marketers on TV — and you have a business in constant flux.
The tenets of direct response marketing — measuring ROI, the ability to make quick changes to a campaign, creating a direct relationship with your customer, and more — inform every level of the expanding direct and digital marketing sphere. From mobile marketing to online retail to social media, each of these new (and to hear the general media tell it, supposedly revolutionary) technologies merely provides marketers with levels of responsiveness and communication similar to what direct response has been giving its proponents for years.
Yet, instead of maximizing the use of these new technologies to supplement TV campaigns, many in what we call the “legacy As Seen On TV” space seem to shortsightedly wish for the simpler times of the past — where they didn’t have to “worry” about all these new technological opportunities. What a mistake! Instead of becoming leaders, they are quite literally missing the future.
More of the marketers (and service providers) in the traditional DRTV space need to place themselves at the forefront of these changes. Stop fighting for the past and take part in — even lead the way into — the future. DR marketers have always had the tools that many utilizing these new marketing technologies think are brand new!
In 2014, I hope to see the DR industry jump into the fray with digital and data-driven marketers to build better business for all of us.
Thomas Haire, Editor-in-Chief