December 20, 2004

The Gift of Insight

The Gift of Insight Jonathan Schwartz has a great post entitled “Every Customer Visit is a Lesson.” It’s so true…if you want to give yourself a gift this holiday season, give yourself the gift of insight and spend some time in the market with a few of your top customers or prospects.  I’ve always found that to be one of the most valuable ways to shape the business, both strategically and operationally. One of the most vivid memories I have to illustrate this concept is a meeting that I had with Crate and Barrel, a prospect, in the very early days of Return Path, back in 2000 or 2001.  I went in with my colleague Sophie Miller, and with a number of product sales specialists from our reseller, DoubleClick, for an all-day session with C&B’s online marketing team.  We collectively were pitching everything, possibly including the kitchen sink — ad serving through DART, buying online media through the DoubleClick Network, using Abacus to expand the reach of their catalog, sending email through DARTMail, renting email lists through DoubleClick’s email list business, oh yes, and using Return Path’s ECOA service to keep their email database clean. The meeting was a mess, […]