Cooperative Database News….

Concepts Direct Founder Starts Co-op

He’s back! Veteran direct marketer Phil Wiland, the founder of Concepts Direct, has launched Wiland Direct, a cooperative database with about 30 participating catalogers.

“I see the catalog industry as having a lot of problems currently,” Wiland says. “But I think technology has yet to address the issues that the catalog industry faces.”

To that end, Wiland Direct is offering what he calls “next generation response models” and a database that “remembers itself at every point in time in the past.” For example, suppose a marketer submits response data from a September 2004 mailing. The database has the capability to recall the data as it looked in September 2004. “The catalog industry faces many challenges,” Wiland says. “I believe that improving results for catalog companies requires both increased profits from customer mail and larger prospect universes that perform better.”

Wiland, who started service firm Wiland Services before launching gifts cataloger Concepts Direct, sold his interest in the latter, which is now known as Direct Retailing. He no longer is involved in the business.

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