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Academically speaking, direct marketing is a new field. Programs that specialize in it are few and far between, but as the Direct Marketing Educational Foundation notes, "even a single course in direct marketing can be of great value in getting started in a rewarding career." Single courses are now routinely offered at many college and universities, while the Direct Marketing Association, the Canadian Direct Marketing Association, and regional direct marketing clubs offer a rich variety of professional courses in all areas of the industry.


For a complete list of colleges offering courses in direct marketing, contact the Direct Marketing Educational Foundation. Their helpful brochure, "Where Shall I Go to College to Study Direct Marketing?," lists more than 140 colleges and universities that offer courses in direct marketing.


Over a dozen schools now offer certificate and degree programs in direct marketing, often in conjunction with a regional direct marketing club. The largest programs are profiled here.

Cabrini College

Offers a concentration in Direct Marketing to students studying Direct Marketing as part of a bachelor's program, or a certificate in Direct Marketing to those taking the courses outside the degree program. Students may qualify for tuition assistance from the Philadelphia Direct Marketing Association Scholarship Fund.

University of Cincinnati

The University of Cincinnati Direct Marketing Policy Center sponsors undergraduate instruction, coordinates student internships, and provides a range of seminars for management education. It also supports academic research in direct marketing.

DePaul University

DePaul offers a comprehensive, thirty-week program developed in cooperation with the Chicago Association of Direct Marketing.

Hocking Technical College

This school offers a two-year program in telemarketing management leading to an associate degree.
Humber College of Applied Arts and Technology

Business & Industry Services
Continuous Education
The Certificate Program in Direct Marketing, taught by seasoned Canadian direct marketing professionals, consists of a minimum of seven courses in direct marketing.

Kearney State College

Kearney State offers a B.S. in Business Administration with a marketing emphasis and a telemarketing sub-emphasis, and a B.S. in Telecommunications Management with an emphasis in telemarketing management.

Milwaukee Area Technical College

MATC offers an Advanced Technical Certificate upon completion of five courses, or as part of an associate degree.

University of Missouri-Kansas City

Center for Direct Marketing Education and Research Henry Bloch School of Business and Public Administration
Offers an M.B. A. degree with a concentration in Direct Marketing as well as an advanced certification curriculum for direct marketing practitioners who spend three weeks on campus. Graduates of the three-week program are designated PDM, professional direct marketer.

New York University-Direct Marketing Center
School of Continuing Education
Offers a sixteen-credit professional training diploma in Direct Marketing to practitioners with a B.A., B.S., or higher degree. Also offers noncredit evening courses.

Northwestern University

Medill School of Journalism
Division of Integrated Advertising/Marketing Communications
A graduate-level program at the Medill School of Journalism, offering sixteen courses and a practicum in direct marketing.

Oakton Community College

Offers a two-year associate degree in Direct Marketing, as well as a twelve-hour certification program.

Roosevelt University

Offers an M.S. in Marketing Communications that prepares students for careers in mass media, but can emphasize direct marketing.

University of San Diego San Diego State University

Direct Marketing Program
University of San Diego
School of Graduate & Continuing Education
Manchester Executive Conference Center
Offers a four-course certification program that leads to a "Professional Designation in Direct Marketing." The program is sponsored by the two schools in cooperation with the San Diego Direct Marketing Club.

University of Toronto

Offers a certificate course in conjunction with the Canadian Direct Marketing Association, awarded upon completion of six courses within three years.


The Direct Marketing Educational Foundation is dedicated to teaching students about direct marketing and encouraging them to choose direct marketing as a career. It's a terrific clearinghouse of opportunities for learning about the field. Through its programs, it spreads the word about direct marketing among the young. And by making the resumes of its program graduates available to the direct marketing companies that help sponsor it, the DMEF also helps spread the word about talented young job-seekers. Whether you are researching direct marketing or gearing up for a full-press job search, the DMEF should be your first stop. The DMEF is located at 6 East 43rd Street, New York, NY 10017.
DMEF Collegiate Institute

This intensive five-day seminar on direct marketing basics is open to college seniors. Held three or four times a year, it is designed to introduce students with little or no previous exposure to direct marketing to the field and its opportunities. Attendees must pay for the first $150 of expenses, but all additional expenses, including transportation, are covered by the DMEF. To apply, ask your marketing, advertising, or communications professor to sponsor you. If your professor has not received a mailing on the Institute, contact the DMEF for an application and additional instructions.

Attending the Collegiate Institute can measurably speed up a career. Among the Institute's graduates are dozens of top-level agency and client-side personnel, including Steve Millard, president of the list management company The Millard Group; Steve Cohn, senior vice president of direct marketing for American Express; and Karl Dentino of Rosenfield/Dentino, profiled in chapter 10.

DMEF Summer Internship Program

Stimulating internships in mailing list maintenance, marketing research, account services, telemarketing, subscription fulfillment, copy writing, production, media, and other areas of direct marketing-all in New York-are available to recent graduates. These eight-to-ten-week direct marketing jobs offer a salary, on-the-job experience, and the opportunity to enrich your direct marketing knowledge through a series of afternoon seminars led by industry professionals.

Check your college career placement center for applications, or request one from the DMEF. All applicants must be recommended by a professor, preferably one in marketing, advertising, or communications. Applications are screened by the DMEF and then forwarded to the companies interested in hiring interns, who make the final selection. A limited number of internships are available outside the New York area; contact the DMEF for more information about additional internship opportunities.

College Days

Held in conjunction with the Direct Marketing Association's Annual and Spring Conferences, College Days give students and professors the opportunity to attend one day of regular sessions, free of charge. Advanced registration is required.

When DMA Direct Marketing Days are held in New York, for example, the DMEF invites colleges and universities within a day's drive to be the DMEF's guest for the day's activities, lunch, and a special program on career opportunities in direct marketing. When the annual event is held in Chicago, schools in the surrounding area are contacted. Ask your professor to keep an eye out for the invitation.

Leonard J. Raymond Direct Marketing Collegiate "Echo" Competition
Cosponsored by the DMA Echo Awards Committee, the DMEF, and an annual corporate sponsor, the Collegiate ECHO competition gives students hands-on experience in actual direct marketing situations. Teams of four students are assigned a marketing problem and asked to solve it with direct or integrated marketing. The winning team receives all-expense-paid trips to the DMA's annual conference; second place entrants attend their local Direct Marketing Days event; and third place entrants are given direct marketing books and materials.


Many local direct marketing clubs sponsor seminars and work-shops open to students and recent graduates. A few of the bigger programs are listed below. Contact the direct marketing club nearest you (see appendix A) for information on its educational activities.

Chicago Association of Direct Marketing

Industry newcomers in Chicago get their training from the Chicago Association of Direct Marketing, the official organization for the advancement of effective direct response marketing in the Chicago area.

Each spring and fall, the CADM's Basic Course in Direct Marketing spends eleven weeks on every angle of consumer and business-to-business direct marketing, including constructing an appealing offer, writing, designing, and producing a winning direct response package, selecting and coordinating media, getting the most from a database, and analyzing results. Sessions are taught by Chicago-area experts. In 1992, CADM members paid $230, nonmembers $290, for the course and its textbook, Successful Direct Marketing Methods by Bob Stone.

The Direct Marketing Association

The Direct Marketing Association is the professional association for marketers in the U.S. Among its extensive programs (listed in appendix A) it offers professional development seminars for direct marketers. These top-notch seminars, while expensive, offer superb coverage of the major areas of direct marketing. Each one is taught by recognized experts. Except for the Basic Institute, which is offered in different cities throughout the year, most courses are offered two to four times a year in Chicago and New York.

DMA Basic Institute:- A three-day immersion course that presents the fundamentals of successful direct marketing, from planning to fulfillment, and introduces the industry. Offered six times yearly in New York, Chicago, Atlanta, Washington D.C., St. Louis, and other major cities.

Beyond the Basics:- An intensive blend of lecture, case study, and hands-on experience that teaches advanced strategies necessary to build a successful direct marketing business.

Catalog Basics:- Offered twice a year, this course covers the essentials of catalog marketing, from up-front organization and matching merchandise and prices to a target audience, to converting prospects to customers and analyzing results.
Winning Direct Mail:- A two-day seminar on creating powerful, profitable direct mail packages.

Printing and Production:- Buying and Planning for Direct Marketers. A one-day seminar on the basics of production, including communicating with printers, negotiating prices, and producing a high-quality product economically.

Fulfillment and Customer Service Excellence:- Two one-day seminars on how to make fulfillment and customer service help increase sales, profits, and customers.

Profitable and Effective Use of the Telephone:-Outbound and Inbound. This three-day seminar offers a complete blueprint for using the telephone for outbound and inbound marketing and sales.

Database Marketing:- A two-day seminar that introduces database techniques that can dramatically improve a company's profit picture. No technical knowledge is required.

Direct Marketing Math and Finance:- The basics of direct marketing math and finance are presented in a two-day seminar that demonstrates how to use direct marketing numbers, apply financial modeling techniques, and succeed in quantitative analysis.

Statistics and Modeling for Direct Marketers:- Two-day seminar on using statistical techniques, selecting and implementing the correct modeling method, and running sophisticated tests.

Modern Methods of Data Analysis and Response Modeling:- A one-day session on advanced statistics and how they can be integrated into predictive response models.

Insurance Direct Marketing:- A one-day seminar on targeting and selling insurance to customers and turning a one-policy customer into a long-term, multiproduct client.

The Laws Affecting Credit and Collection:- A one-day seminar that clarifies what can and cannot be done in extending credit and collecting debts.

The Law and Direct Marketing:- A one-day briefing on the laws, regulations, and legal issues that govern direct marketing business practices.

The DMA Certificate in Direct Marketing:- To promote across-the-board knowledge and practical expertise, the DMA awards a special certificate to candidates with a minimum of one year's experience in direct marketing who have earned ten seminar credits within thirty-six months.

The Canadian Direct Marketing Association

The CDMA sponsors a two-day basic course, Focus on Direct Marketing, offered three or four times a year in Ibronto. In 1992, it began co-sponsoring seminars with the Direct Marketing Association, offering the Math and Finance course and the Statistical Modeling course to CDMA members when they request it.
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