In the second part of our interview with direct marketing veteran Lois Brayfield, Lois talks about knowing when to break the rules in catalog production and the biggest obstacle to marketing efficiency. Click here to read part one.
1. Your bio mentions your knowledge of the rules of catalog marketing and when to break them. Describe a situation when it’s better to break the rules.
One example is we always recommend you feature a best seller on your cover. This is a proven technique. Best sellers give you a hedge on response. However, if you have evidence that a new product mirrors the features of a best seller or a cultural event offers an new opportunity; break the rules! Another example; it’s important to place best-sellers in the upper, right-hand corner where the eye lands first on a spread. If the best-seller does not have stopping power (i.e. it’s boring) place other visual eye-candy in its place.
2. What trends are shaping the way marketing teams operate today? In the next three years?
Marketing teams must train themselves to critically look at the way they’ve always done things and shift into a mode of “we can do better.” As I mentioned earlier, it’s imperative we be BOLD in our promotions and stand out in a busy marketplace. We believe that growth cannot occur if you continue doing the same thing year after year. And I don’t believe this trend is going away, even in the next 5 years!
3. What are the main obstacles that prevent marketing teams from getting things done efficiently?
Time, time and more time. Schedules are being attacked at every level and true creativity requires time. Great marketing does not come from a production line! Enough said.
4. What role does technology play in overcoming these obstacles, particularly cloud technology?
Technology certainly allows for collaboration and creativity but only if it makes us more efficient; not necessarily quicker. Technology should create a simpler path, allowing us more time in the creative process BUT it should not own us.
5. What are some things you’ve seen successful marketing teams do to instantly improve their efficiency?