Population Statistic: Read. React. Repeat.
Sunday, March 16, 2021

It may not have invented junk mail, but Valpak, that St. Petersburg-based firm that’s celebrating 40 years of business this year, certainly maximized its potential with direct-marketing precision that drills right down to neighborhood demographics:

From the beginning, the company has staked its success on measurable results. [Company founder Terry] Loebel required advertisers to record how much coupon-carrying customers spent. Valpak remains an intensely data-driven company, with the ability to divide neighborhoods into blocks of 10,000 residences.

For instance, Valpak can tell businesses which neighborhoods have swimming pools, where new houses are being built and where people with certain income brackets live.

If you have a mind to sabotage this sort of datamining, there doesn’t seem to be a way to do so, other than promptly tossing the unopened baby-blue overstuffed envelop to prevent further information compilation. That just slows down the machine — it doesn’t pervert the already-collected data. If it makes you feel better, you can always tear the coupons to shreds, or burn them, before depositing them into the trash bin.

Wait, wait… I work in marketing now. Strike everything I just wrote. Redeem the hell out of those direct-to-your-door coupons!

I was well-aware of Valpak’s presence in St. Pete when I lived there, but I never followed them particularly closely, either personally or for the business magazine I worked for. That’s probably because it sold itself to Cox Target Media long ago, and as a result was no longer considered a “local” company. Too many layers of corporate crud to cut through to get any information.

by Costa Tsiokos, Sun 03/16/2008 09:15:41 PM
Category: Advert./Mktg., Business, Florida Livin'
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