Business got better for catalogers and DMers in general during the first quarter, according to the Direct Marketing Association.
The DMA reported in its quarterly business review survey that the industry overall had a revenue performance index rating of 64 out of 100 for the first quarter, a 10-point increase over the same period last year. Catalogers’ index reading was 55.
Catalogers’ sales performance in the first quarter was up 11% compared with the same period in 2003, DMA president H. Robert Wientzen told attendees recently at the American Catalog Conference in Chicago.
The catalog industry’s total ad spending and sales exceeded $15 billion in 2003 and is expected to grow to $19 billion by 2008, Wientzen said, citing the DMA’s economic impact study. Last year, catalog sales hit $133 billion and are projected to rise to $175 billion by 2008.
Catalogers generated 28% of their sales via the Web last year, and that figure is expected to go to 34% in 2006, Wientzen added. Those figures came from a recent study of the industry by the DMA and Catalog Age.
Wientzen also noted that the DMA has begun its RecyclePlease program to encourage DMers to recycle more paper. The DMA has been working with the American Forest and Paper Association to meet a goal of recycling 55% of the paper consumed in the United States. One of the program’s features is a logo DMers can use on catalogs and direct mail to urge recycling.