Chapter One: Introduction to Direct Marketing

Direct marketing is a marketing system, fully controlled by the marketer that develops products, promotes them directly to the final consumer through a variety of media options, accepts direct orders from customers, and distributes products directly to the consumer. It is rapidly becoming a vital component of the integrated marketing communications mix.

Direct marketing has increased in popularity as businesses have come to place more importance on customer satisfaction and repeat purchase. Direct marketing makes use of databases, which allow precision targeting and personalization, thus helping companies to build continuing and enriching relationships with customers. There are eight key advantages of direct marketing, which we will review in the next chapter.

These advantages of direct marketing are fundamental in their implications for achieving more cost-effective marketing. They are especially useful to businesses that are too small to engage in large-scale advertising or to achieve cost-effective access through retail distribution channels. It is worth emphasizing that many of the benefits derive from the use of new information technology that was not available to earlier generations of marketing managers. Bearing in mind that many film commissions have a large proportion of frequent-repeat customers that are vital to their profitability, the advantages of direct marketing in this industry cannot be underestimated.