Thought Leaders - Talk Business

Donna Ritson, President of DDR Communications, Interviewed by Debbie Fliehman Speaks on Direct Response Methodology

June 21, 2020 Debbie Fliehman Season 1 Episode 7
Thought Leaders - Talk Business
Donna Ritson, President of DDR Communications, Interviewed by Debbie Fliehman Speaks on Direct Response Methodology
Show Notes

Donna Ritson, President of DDR Communications, founded the company over 30 years ago. DDR's business is based on a direct response methodology that delivers market research, business development, strategic alliance, and actionable market intelligence for companies in virtually every B2B industry. DDR has been a business partner with hundreds of companies over the years reporting on the trends that give decision makers a deeper insight into key market trends. DDR's experience is backed by over 45 years in Marketing Communications.

Following is a brief of her interview. For detailed information, listen to the podcast.

Debbie: We know that market research is at the foundation of many strategic decisions. What type of research does DDR Communications bring to clients?

Donna: We provide our clients with actionable intelligence that is needed to grow any business to the next level. And that growth depends on how well companies acquire knowledge and then how they turn that knowledge into action.

We work in virtually every business-to-business market, from packaging to textiles, and aerospace to pharmaceuticals.

Some of the reasons companies look for market information are:

  • Exploring the opportunity of entering a new market
  • Introducing a new product
  • If a company is making an acquisition
  • Learn how they can become better partners with their customers, or with their distributors
  • Understand how industry trends are changing their position in the market

Debbie: Can you walk us through an example of how a company can get started with market research and what benefits they can expect?

Donna: Let's look at a project we delivered last year that everyone can relate to - the coffee industry. Our client wanted to expand their presence as a supplier to coffee companies offering a U.S.-based source for stand up pouches.

I'll walk you through the five steps we use on a typical project - in order to bring information to our clients so they can make a "go" or "no go" decision with confidence for their strategic plan or campaign.

  1. Look at the market conditions
  2. Analyze the competitors
  3. Understand how your product fits into the industry
  4. Talk to the industry
  5. Compile results into an actionable report

Debbie: Every company would like to make decisions with more confidence and having research at the foundation makes sense. Let's start with step one - what areas of the market do you look at?

Donna: We start by using secondary research that pulls knowledge from the industry about the industry:

  • The size of the market
  • Growth over time
  • Geographic location
  • How many potential customers are there?

The next step is:
How many suppliers serve this market?
Who is the competition?
What types of customers do they serve?

We can find what they are spending on materials, or capital equipment.

At times, we even speak to the competitors to learn the pulse of the market from their perspective. For details, listen to the podcast.

Debbie: Not that you've compiled information on the market conditions, how do you begin to gather information from the users themselves?

Donna: Using the coffee industry as an example, we learned that this is a fast growing segment of the beverage industry. For details, listen to the podcast.

Debbie: What are the key takeaways you want to leave with us today?

Donna: Basing strategic decisions on solid research brings a greater level of success.

Contact Donna Ritson at or call 847-234-9131.

Contact Debbie Fliehman at or call 847-902-4175.