How Tobacco Farming is like Direct Marketing.


rankly, direct marketing is nothing like tobacco farming, but there are a few valuable takeaways.

My family were sharecroppers in the years before I was born. They’d all left the farm for the army, or college, or jobs in town, but the farm was still producing tobacco. For a few summers I worked on the farm to make a extra money as a teenager. And the whole family would go to the farm in the fall to help bring in the crop and cure tobacco in barns. It was hard work. Great inspiration to do something else… anything else.

So what are those valuable takeaways?

  • You reap what you sow. You can’t expect to get top price at auction if don’t sow the best seeds. Same in DR… the best lists get the best results, right?
  • You must tend the crop. Getting prime results takes attention to detail. I’d walk through the fields with my uncles and they’d tell me how you get the best crop. It’s all about seeds + weather + curing = top $$$. Same with direct response marketing. There’s that magic formula of List + Format + Creative = Control.
  • You need the help you can trust. Workers who know your crop. By the same token, in direct response marketing you need resources who have experience, instinct, and skills unique to our business.

So maybe there are more similarities than I thought. And I could say that tobacco gave me the instinct I needed to be the powerhouse DR Creative Director I am today!

Btw, you should be hiring IngramCS to create your fall direct mail. After all, it is curing season.

Want to win big on your next campaign? Call today and put a proven creative team to work for you!

Dwight IngramCreative Director  |  IngramCS