MASS MARKETING GETS DIRECT FOR THE '90S

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DALLAS-Mass marketing is back. Or at least it should be, two marketing experts say.

"Beware of seeing nothing but a one-to-one future," said Stan Rapp, the father of individualized marketing and chairman of Cross Rapp Associates, New York, at the Direct Marketing Association annual convention, held here last week. "Don't be so fixated on one-to-one that you lose sight of the importance of marketing duality," which he described in an Oct. 7 seminar as the new concept of direct mass marketing.

"Direct mass marketing combines the body of knowledge, the database, with the more intangible share of mind, the techniques that build brand image and perceptions," he said.

Separately, Laurel Cutler, vice chairman and global director of marketing planning at Foote, Cone & Belding, New York, made similar observations in an Oct. 9 keynote speech that drew strong applause at the Dallas gathering.

Ms. Cutler said consumers are "searching for the `deep' that unites us .....We're too preoccupied with what divides us and the differences that separate us."

Mr. Rapp told direct marketers it's time to start acquiring new customers.

"There has been so much focus on how [much] it is less expensive to retain existing customers than to acquire new customers. All the focus has been on retention; it is time to build the base again and acquire new customers."

Mr. Rapp said the only way for companies to fulfill their potential is to go to non-customers and find out why they either are not buying or are buying elsewhere.

Despite increasing emphasis on many fronts to objectively measure the effectiveness of advertising, he said the secret ingredient to maximizing customer share is raw emotion-strong triggers like envy, fear, greed, love, joy and pride.

He cited advertising by Toyota Motor Sales USA's Lexus and MCI Communications Corp.'s networkMCI as successful examples of direct mass marketing that combine an individual customer relationship with the larger branding picture.

"The '80s were the `me decade,"' Ms. Cutler said. "The '90s [are] the `re' decade, as consumers renew, restructure, re-engineer, reprioritize to regain a sense of control" and simplify their lives.M

Laura Loro coordinates Direct Marketing News. Reach her at at 904 Champlain Dr., Voorhees, N.J. 08043 or by phone at (609) 784-9090 or by fax at (609) 784-9119.

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