People make a great difference

LONDON - Power can be defined in many ways: from military might to nuclear power; from divine inspiration to physical prowess. But the definition that best sums up the Power 100 is the capability of doing or accomplishing something.

The individuals in the Power 100 have acted decisively and accomplished many things, whether it is innovating products and services, establishing and growing businesses, or controlling huge direct marketing budgets. They are all shaping the industry in which we work and I take off my hat to them. It is easy to be glib about industry awards, tables and rankings, but without the inspiration and leadership shown by these people, direct marketing would not be the thriving and cutting-edge industry it is today.

Working in recruitment (behind the scenes as it were), it is very easy to see the difference good people make to a company. From making the office a great place to be to contributing to the bottom line, people make a difference.

If we are headed for a global slowdown, it is those companies with the brightest and best people that will be positioned to weather the storm and thrive.

Ian Thomas, managing director, Jobsworth Recruitment


The Power 100 in Direct Marketing assesses the influence of players in the following sectors: client, agency, data, digital DM, telemarketing, printers and mailing houses, postal and door drop distributors, as well as industry figures.

Gauging who deserves a place in each sector list was a tough challenge for the Marketing Direct team. So too was deciding whether people should move up, down, or stay at the same level, based on their rankings from last year.

So what is power in direct marketing? Ranking people is not a scientific process and there was an unavoidable element of subjectivity in our choices. However, certain hard criteria were applied too:

- For clients, the degree of influence and effectiveness they have had in the past 12 months in promoting direct marketing within their companies. Clients also got brownie points for their spending power.

- For suppliers (data players, mailing and print operators, digital direct marketers, agency chiefs and telemarketers), the impact they have had in the past 12 months on their own and their clients' business.

- For postal chiefs, the advances they have made in the postal market two years on from deregulation.

- For industry networkers, the extent to which they have used their position to advance the cause of DM, and the effectiveness of their relationship building.

- All players got credit for DM industry development through public speaking, association involvement and/or standards-setting.