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Competitor's incorrect comment clarified

A recent story about Experian's new B2B Marketing Triggers product ["Experian has a grip on `triggers,' " July 11, p. 14] quoted a source from Dun & Bradstreet who was either intentionally misleading or otherwise uninformed about the marketplace. The source argued that D&B's existing portfolio-monitoring products are the same as Experian's new product. True, they both capture real-time events and deliver them to clients. But that's where the similarities end.

The most striking difference between the two products is the universe of companies we're both watching. Traditional portfolio monitoring products keep tabs on a "portfolio" of businesses provided by a client and are comprised of that client's existing customers. Experian has also offered this type of portfolio monitoring for our clients for more than 13 years.

Experian's new B2B Marketing Triggers, on the other hand, tracks the demographic and credit actions of all 16 million businesses in our National Business Database. That means we can provide customizable triggers not only on your existing customers, but on millions and millions of potential new customers as well. None of the other companies quoted in the article have this capability.

Denise Hopkins

Senior Director of Business Marketing Services


Costa Mesa, Calif.

Marketing to legal pros not as easy as it seems

In my experience, the suggestions offered in your legal vertical articles ["Vertical Insight: Legal," July 11, p. 22] will fall flat. Having spent many years working with and for attorneys, and having hired attorneys, I can attest to the fact that the market is a very difficult one to break into. Once there, vendors can anticipate being routinely driven to reduce costs, with the expectation of 100% perfection, frequently delivered in less than realistic time frames.

Attorneys are trained to question everything, to debate purely for the purpose of assuring that ideas are well-evaluated. Commonly, litigation tactics are used to "depose" vendors-when the attorneys are actually involved in the sales process at all. More frequently, they are brought in for the final decision.

It's a tough market, easier for those who are attorneys or former attorneys, regardless of what they do today.

Suggesting to your readers that one can merely target a little differently is setting them up for frustration in what is already a highly competitive market. Those of us who have spent time inside law firms, as well as having successfully operated as outside vendors to law firms, know what your readers will likely learn the hard way: Attorneys and law firms require an extremely different approach and mind-set than the typical b-to-b sale.

Cheryl Gidley

Gidley Consulting

Barrington, Ill.

Agency gloats over choice as Chasers `Gloat'

Our client, SunGard Availability Services, had an ad featured in your "Goat or Gloat" section [Chasers, July 11, p. 34]. As the unnamed creators of the advertising that received your Chasers' Choice "Gloat" for the Tower Bridge ad, we'd like to gloat. This advertisement and its George Washington Bridge predecessor have been positively received by all who have seen them. We are flattered that Veritas also recognized the power of our visual analogy. As they say, "Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery."

Tracy Seng

VP-account Director

The Star Group

Cherry Hill, N.J.

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