By Julie Katz – Researcher, Marketing, Forrester

Database marketing is officially sexy.  Once heavily technical and used only to support direct marketing programs, database marketing now helps brand marketers learn more about their target customers and build loyalty.  Aaron Cano of 1-800-Flowers and Elva Lewis of P&G joined Dave Frankland to discuss how their organizations make use of database marketing to further their business goals and deepen customer relationships.

P&G’s 86 brands have traditionally operated independently through mass media to reach theoretical customers.  Now they’re experimenting using "sticky" brands like Pampers and Iams to build community and attract loyal users to other relevant brands.  Lewis credits many sources for their success with data and change in mindset:  millennial marketers joining P&G, marketing partners like Merkle and Targetbase, and retail partners like CVS.

To garner support for using data for more than just direct mail catalogs, 1-800-Flowers’s Cano, if you didn’t already know, is also a conglomeration of many brands.  Cano garnered support for using data strategically by sending out company-wide emails with "tidbits" of data.  Executives’s eyes opened – wide – and Cano now has a seat at strategy discussions.

Dave is looking for examples of how other companies have extended the use of their database, so if you’d like to share, send him an email or post a comment.