January 01, 2013

Catalogers and Tablet Commerce: Try Something Different

I realize that it takes no work to put your 124 page January clearance catalog on Catalog Spree.  But it does take a lot of work for 44 year old Jennifer to read that tiny text on her new iPad Mini.  And we haven't solved a problem for Jennifer ... she can thumb through the paper version easier, she can find more products, easily, on the website, and she can comparison shop via Google.

We haven't solved a customer problem with Catalog Tablet Commerce.  It looks nice, but it doesn't solve a problem.

Have you had a chance to review this piece of journalism from the New York Times?  Please click here, I'll wait for you ...

... welcome back!

I know, that's different, isn't it?

Explain to me, dear catalogers, why everything has to be a catalog?

You're a merchant, first and foremost.

It's your job to find a way to creatively sell merchandise.  Why not be creative?

Imagine something like what you just experienced via the NY Times, but on a tablet?  Why not feature just one item, and tell a compelling story about it?  Do that 26 times a year.  Or 52 times a year.  Or 78 times a year.

Yes, I get it.  It's hard work.  Your creative team is working on the April catalog, and then the May catalog, and then the June catalog.  It never ends.  It never will end.  Why do hard work when you can re-purpose your catalog on a tablet?

You do the hard work because you're creating a commerce channel, you're solving a customer problem, you're differentiating yourself from an endless array of boring websites and a veritable plethora of mindless catalogs shoved into a tablet commerce app.

You do the hard work because you have endless passion for merchandise, right?

Create an entertainment and merchandising experience that is appropriate for the device.


  1. There's not a lot of "R&D" budget lines in direct mail these days....

  2. True.

    Folks can take savings from mailing fewer catalogs to unresponsive customers and reallocate the money to other activities!


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