As we age I think we sometimes become more sentimental. The analyst in us looks back and tries to understand what has really changed. My consensus is not really very much. I’ve been in the direct marketing industry my entire career and the questions being asked today are much the same as yesterday. The answers, however, are much more complex — strategic alignment, 360 view of the customer, integrated systems, one channel view, etc. We all wanted these things 30 years ago and we still want them today with few companies (even today) actually realizing the goal. Surprising? Not really when you think about it. Of the companies I’ve worked for some have made a real commitment to customer marketing while for others it is simply the current thing to do and there was no investment. Worse still the digital guys thought they knew all about it and you know that story. This blog is about things observed a while back that are still relevant now.