When conducting a merge/purge, names will hit against the Direct Marketing Association pander file, which consists of those people who write the DMA indicating they do not want unsolicited mail. Does that mean you should avoid mailing to all of these names?
Certainly don’t mail any prospect names that hit against the DMA pander file. By signing up for the file, these consumers have expressed that they don’t to receive catalogs from companies they don’t do business with.
But you should mail your own house file buyers the DMA pander hits. Break them out as a separate segment of your house file and you’ll see that you typically get a great response from these names.
The other advantage of giving them their own source code is that you can see if you get complaints from these buyers about mailing them catalogs. Normally you won’t get complaints, but if you do, respond to them immediately and add these buyers to your own “do not mail” lists.
Jim Coogan is president of Santa Fe, NM-based consultancy Catalog Marketing Economics.