Tag Archives: Continuity

Dear Diary, Why do I need a blog?

Dear Diary, Why do I need a blog?


When I was a kid, my Mom bought me a diary with a small brass key. I wrote in it every day until my sister peeked into it and that was the end of my diary writing, especially when she found out I had a crush on her boyfriend. He was a dork.

I’d forgotten all that until people in the business started insisting that I do a blog. “It’ll make people like you … ” “You can show how smart you are…” yada yada.

So, I set up joyofdirectmarketing.com to write about our clients’ direct marketing efforts, as well as my speeches and books. Then my assistant at the time said that no one does direct marketing any more (as in direct mail – boy was she wrong). That threw a wrench into things for a while.

Then someone else here at the office wondered about the objective of the blog and if I was going to build continuity, progress constantly and develop content. Hmmm. This was becoming too much like work, not at all like my diary days when it was fun.

Then my friend, Amy Africa blogged that somehow my blog is stiff and not like me at all. No trolls and such. You can read about it here: Amy Africa’s QLOG


People responded to Amy (as they always do) with ideas for improving content, type fonts, email capture, colors, adding a photo of me and everyone said to lose the calendar. (God knows where that came from anyway).
So, I figured I should check out some other blogs.

Amy’s good friend, Debra Ellis, has an interesting one here: Wilson Ellis Consulting Blog (I adore her from Twitter.)


I attend #blogchat on Twitter most Sunday nights about 8pm, and Mack Collier runs this information-packed session (you need to be on tweetdeck though), and I like his blog: Mack Collier’s Blog


I now read Dianna Huff’s b-to-b blog all the time: Dianna Huff’s Blog


And for fun, I follow the Brazen Careerist, Penelope Trunk – a city person marrying a farmer who has somehow got me engaged in her whole life, like a soap opera. Take a look at it: Penelope Trunk’s Blog


My friend Dwain told me about the blog: Small Dead Animals. Take a look at it here, and you’ll be hooked: SmallDeadAnimals.com


As I’m checking them all out, I’m wondering more and more why I need a blog, what it’s good for. I still have no idea.

If you get a chance, let me know what you think! Thank you.

The Joy of … checks flying in every day.

The Joy of … checks flying in every day.

Ah, those were the days! One of my first DM jobs was at Greystone Press, a continuity publisher. We sold books in sets, one at a time, and billed customers monthly. Titles included the International Encyclopedia of Art, the International Illustrated Encyclopedia of Decorating. We also had gardening sets (that I wrote), and how-to handbooks.

And every day, the good ol’ USPS delivered mailbags filled with orders and, more important, checks. This was before normal everyday people had credit cards.

Orders and checks actually came right to our office in Manhattan and a bunch of people in the fulfillment area worked quickly to give us flash counts, daily, sometimes hourly.

It was exciting to hear that thousands of orders had come in, with checks, or that there were fewer cancellations than expected.

It was a joy to sit in the back room watching the fulfillment people outserting checks and writing up bank deposit slips. I loved finding out which of my programs was working best and which were lagging.

Now I call clients to ask how a mailing we did is faring out in the market and they often just don’t know yet… and maybe they’ll never know. “The data guy hasn’t put the numbers together, but there seems to be a lift, which may not be because of your mailing because so many responses are unidentifiable .” Which you wouldn’t think possible, would you? Read the rest of this entry