DIRECTWATCH - A weekly analysis of the direct marketing field

The business-to-business direct mail sector bounced back from

February's slump to record a more respectable 551 creatives tracked in

March. This is up significantly from February's 385 and slightly higher

than the January figure of 538.

One key growth area over the past few months has been the business

services sector, which leapt to 49 creatives in March, from just 22 in


The sector includes mailings offering courier services, employment

services, printing, marketing, legal assistance, hospitality,

storage-space rental and a host of small, defined professional


Mailings promoting employment services have undergone a particularly

sharp rise. Some firms promote themselves as specialist personnel shops,

including Hays Montrose, a supplier of skilled trades people, and Liddel

Dunbar for sales staff.

Another aspect of the recruitment market is reflected by TMP Worldwide's

promotion of its web site as a job-advertising tool, and

the Tyne & Wear Enterprise Trust, which hopes to persuade middle-sized

firms to offer part-time work to undergraduates.

It will be interesting to monitor the increase in promotional mailing by

firms offering business services. Is it down to smaller companies that

see this sector offers niche markets more readily than more traditional

business-to-business sectors?

Business-to-business direct mail November 2000

Company No of campaigns Sector No of campaigns

March Yr-to- March Yr-to-

date date

Viking Direct 13 204 Seminars/training 132 1846

Dell 11 117 Publications 114 1720

Institute of Dir Mkting 9 65 Computers 93 1218

Institutional Investor 8 38 Office supplies 100 1326

Neat Ideas 7 53 Motor 28 322

Reed Exhibition Cos 6 29 Utilities 22 343

Informa Publishing 5 38 Travel 11 162

AOL 5 38 Services 49 239

IBC UK Conferences 5 27 Other/general 2 5

Hawksmere 5 58

Haymarket Publications 5 45

Parcel Force 4 13

Reed Business Info 4 49

Staples 4 40

Royal Mail 4 30

Peugeot 4 13

Rapid Racking 3 17

Institute of Directors 3 45 Total campaigns 551 7181

NTL 3 11 Acquisition 514 6495

Cranfield Uni School 3 20 Customer 37 686

of Management

ACNielsen MMS monitors direct mail activity and spend using a panel of

10,000 people profiled and weighted to be representative of the UK

population. Spend is estimated by multiplying grossed-up mailing volumes

against average post and production costs for mailpacks in each area.

Data does not include requested items, door-drops or inserts. Detailed

information on direct mail is available via


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