Direct marketing takes place when companies promote their products directly to potential buyers and provide a method for them to make a purchase. Examples of direct marketing include television infomercials, direct mail offers and Internet sites. Direct marketing can provide buyers with several potential benefits.
Buyers of products and services offered via direct marketing can often make purchases from the comfort of their home or office. Since direct marketers make use of online or print catalogs, the buyer can simply browse until he finds the product he wants and complete the transaction by telephone or Internet and avoid the hassle of shopping malls. People that respond to television and radio ads can also complete their transaction with a phone call or a few clicks of a computer mouse.
Shoppers who don't enjoy dealing with salespeople often prefer direct marketing because there is no need for face-to-face interaction. Buyers can shop at their own pace and take the time to conduct any necessary research without feeling pressured to make a decision.
Buying direct can mean dealing strictly with the manufacturer without the intervention of a third-party retailer or distributor. This eliminates the price markups added by a middleman, resulting in lower prices to the buyer. It may also provide the buyer the opportunity to negotiate price.
It can be easy for a buyer to customize the product or service to their exact specifications through direct marketing. Product websites are available that allow the buyer to actually design the product from scratch. This eliminates miscommunication or a lack of understanding that can occur between a buyer and a salesperson.
Buyers may have access to special offers that are only available through direct marketing. For example, once a purchase is made, the buyer may receive additional offers in the form of email coupons. Certain special offers may only be available to those who peruse a company's website or respond to a television ad.