Wayward Seasonal Catalog Waste Ends With Web-based Apps
By Donna Hogan
Special Correspondent for TechNews
‘Tis the season to pack mailboxes with hefty holiday gift catalogs from Williams-Sonoma, See’s Candies, Sears, et al, touting great deals on everything from peppermint bark to perfume to pots and pans.
But how many of the glossy paper-based pitches for toys or fishing gear or lingerie are addressed to a long-ago homeowner and resented by the “or current” resident who has to dispose of them?
For some consumers, the voluminous Christmas-time wish books are the delight of the season, but others bemoan the number of trees sacrificed as they toss the titanic tomes in recycle bins.
A California company, Melissa Data, said it saves retailers’ money and customers’ good will with a Web-based software service that eliminates duplicate mailings and automatically changes addresses based on U.S. Post Office’s up-to-date address lists.
Every year, as many as 18 percent to 20 percent of Americans move, said
“That’s nearly 55 million people,” Brown said. “The average data base, which is the life blood of a company, goes stale so often.”
The company specializes in providing “data hygiene” for small- to medium-sized businesses, merging and purging their data bases to keep addresses current and correct, he said.
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