John Carroll University Entrepreneurs association at the Muldoon Center

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Best Practices in Marketing Management
The January 21, 2003 meeting of the
John Carroll University Entrepreneur Association was titled “Best Practices in Marketing Management” with over 100 business owners and entrepreneurs attending.

The stellar panel consisted of David Peckinpaugh, Executive VP, Sales & Marketing, Conferon, Jean Gianfagna, President of Gianfagna Marketing & Communications Inc. and Lorraine Rojek, Principal and Founder of the Rojek Cutcher Group.


David began by telling of the oft-seen situation in many companies.  They might have a Christmas card list in Excel, an Access database for their newsletter subscribers and so on.  David said, “If you’re living in that space you need to invest in some CRM (Customer Relationship Management) Software.”  He suggests using web-based software so it’s not just accessible locally when you are at your desk but from any Internet connection.

He also told how their business development team segments their database because “All customers and prospects are not equal.” You need to employ more resources intelligently for your high profit customers and potential customers.  They use four account grades - A, B, C and D.

Their approach is to market by multiple touches and multiple mediums. That includes direct mail, eMarketing and other techniques such as a graphic postcard with a quick message on it. 

They also employ 3 different newsletters:

  1. Events and Company information
  2. eVersion of the newsletter emailed every 3 weeks on Monday afternoon (because research shows that Tuesday is the best day to get people to read things)
  3. Meeting Mentor newsletter - pure education newsletter - to enhance their status as experts

In addition to this education-based marketing, they maintain a speaker’s bureau document within the company to remind their “prospects and suspects” of their expertise.

With their recent acquisition of the URL meetings.com, Conferon is exploring even more web-based strategies.

Jean Gianfagna’s company is much smaller than Conferon (6 people in Westlake for the last 10 years) but they still have some large clients such as CSU and Banc One.  Jean’s approach begins with Lead Generation and follows up with a creative offer “to get them to raise their hand”

She cautions that you should not let the “vehicle overpower the message.”

Lorraine Rojek founded her company in 1990.  She offered the following:

  1. Define a stated purpose and vision - “don’t build on sand.”
  2. Establish a focused marketing plan
  3. Speak with one voice - have your brand on everything
  4. Think integration
  5. Pull up a rocker - use that “front porch” time for relationships

In the Q&A section of the program some useful email marketing tips were offered:

  1. You have 1.5 seconds to get someone’s attention
  2. The Subject Line must be relevant
  3. Think about the recipients preview pane - your key message must fit in that frame
  4. Provide a visible privacy statement
  5. Give people an opportunity to opt-in (and opt-out)

Written by Dan Hanson

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