Using PURL’s to Increase Marketing Results

Yesterday I attended a program organized by the AMA Phoenix Direct Marketing Shared Interest Group (SIG). The topic was “Personalized Marketing Using Cross-Media & Multi-Channel Campaigns Delivers Superior Results”.  It was a presentation from Executive Vice President of Mindfire Inc, Joe Manos. He began the presentation by discussing how important analytics and measurement were in marketing. He cited the fact that the average tenure of a CMO has fall from 33 months to 18 months in the past few years. The main reason for this revolving door is CMO’s are, for the most part, unable to adequately quantify the success of marketing programs.

With that in mind he presented the PURL (personalized URL) and CURL (campaign URL) technologies which Mindfire Inc deploys to deliver a personalized marketing message to a target audience. The benefit of course being that you are able to then track the results from this. I was impressed.

The driving force behind the success of PURLs is of course that according to a DMA study 1 out of 3 consumers have said they want to respond to messages online. Online is preferred over 800 numbers or business reply cards. I personally think this number will only grow with time (but he didn’t say that in his presentation and I am sure he would agree). Mr. Manos pointed out that the weak point for many companies is that their websites are not designed to be response vehicles. So, when a potential customer wants to respond to a message and goes to the website the proper vehicle is not available. Hence they abandon their quest.

He had one case study of a Honda dealership in upstate NY that used a PURL campaign which was highly successful. The thing about this campaign he said was that on the creative end it was very weak. In fact he showed us their materials and I agreed it was VERY weak. However, the results were stunning. The dealership sold 40 more vehicles on the promotional weekend using PURL’s than they did the prior year when they didn’t use PURL’s.

Bottom line: As a marketer you need to consider using PURL’s in your marketing mix.

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