MB: What's your biggest current challenge?
Carter: We're integrating our print and online projects. We have a number of electronic newsletters and a Web seminar business. We're moving toward putting it all in one place. It's not so much time-consuming for us as it is for our vendors, but it is truly a challenge to manage and bring all the different vendors together. We're setting goals where we previously had no benchmarks.
MB: What are the challenges of customer acquisition for you?
Carter: In the markets we're in, we have highly qualified lists. For one of our publications, we partner with one of the associations, so finding the people isn't the most difficult part.
MB: Are there any downsides to working with an association?
Carter: Not from an audience-development standpoint, although with an association list come a number of unqualified prospects as well, such as vendors and other people who are part of the association just to gain access to the members rather than to truly use the association for its initial purpose.
MB: Do you just delete those names?
Carter: No, we give them a digital edition of the magazine. As the prospects come in on the member database, they're all coded so we have translation tables to match them up with what they should receive.