The One Element Separating Branding Advertisements and Direct Marketing

Over the past many months reading up on direct marketing, Steve keeps returning to one single question. This one puzzle that always seems to be in the back of my mind. Whether that’s reading anything related to direct mail, branding strategies, etc. And that unresolved question is:

How does this compare to the way big companies perform branding through advertisements?

What’s the difference?

It’s only until this past week that came across an episode of I Love Marketing where the discussion dove into it all and really cleared things up. The most telling line is:

Image advertising is about getting your name out there. Direct response is about getting your name out there and getting a response back. -Joe Polish

Hand Sanitizer Advertising: An Overlooked Offline Medium

You enter a supermarket and that’s the first image you see. What would you think of it? I’ll tell you what I thought: nothing much. When entering a location, your immediate goal is getting inside by any means so your attention hardly goes elsewhere. Oh my eyes noticed that soap-like dispenser but kept moving on along with my body. It didn’t help the position of that particular device was awkward: way off to the side, away from the entrance and exit; almost stashed.