Dates: September 17 - November 25, 2018

Final Assignment: November 26 - December 2, 2018

Lisette Gelinas
Member: $1,395
Non-Member: $1,895


Online Course Overview

Direct Response Marketing provides the strategic foundation for all modern marketing. At the core, it’s about offering a personalized marketing experience to effectively target consumers. Direct response marketing has been around for decades and it’s processes and insights are more relevant than ever.

As the number of digital channels grow, so does the amount of data available, and with it, companies’ expectations that marketing will be accountable and produce better results with each passing campaign. 

This online course showcases how direct response marketing insights guide other marketing disciplines and how to create a robust strategy and plan. 

Learn how to apply direct marketing strategies across any channel from digital to print to social, including how to set measurable objectives to prove success.

Course Objectives

At the end of participating in this course, you should be able to:

  • Understand what makes direct response marketing unique compared to other marketing disciplines
  • Understand when and how to use direct response marketing as part of an integrated marketing campaign
  • Use different marketing channels - digital, print, social, broadcast - as part of a direct marketing plan to drive measurable results
  • Identify different ways to leverage and grow your company’s internal database
  • Define and segment target audiences
  • Set measurable objectives and key success metrics as well as develop a measurement plan to get the data needed to prove success
  • Create a direct response marketing project brief
  • Identify direct marketing tactics and explain the strategy behind it
  • Evaluate direct marketing creative and the elements that are most crucial to driving response
  • Understand the implications of privacy and permission legislation to your direct marketing campaigns and tactics
  • Understand the role of testing versus research in direct marketing, testing best practices and how to create actionable tests
  • Develop direct marketing plans and tactics for both acquisition and retention objectives


  • Interaction with a direct marketing expert
  • Latest technologies
  • Recorded videos with synchronized PowerPoint presentations
  • Integrated discussion boards and forums for group collaboration
  • Technical Support


  • Anywhere and anytime access
  • Flexible to suit your schedule
  • No travel time
  • Interactive learning experience
  • Online Certificate in Direct Response Marketing awarded upon successful completion of all course requirements


Course Requirements:

CMA’s certificate program courses are designed to build on the skills and knowledge of marketing practitioners. Individuals must have at least one year of experience in a marketing-related role to take this course. The instructor will assume that students have a foundational understanding of the principles of marketing. All coursework must be completed in the required timeframe.  Coursework includes 5 individual assignments, discussion questions and a final assignment. Students must achieve a final overall mark of 60% in order to qualify for a certificate pass.


This course is demanding, but very rewarding. Each session is comprised of a video-based multimedia presentation and a discussion question or assignment. On average we recommend that you will need at least 2-4 hours each week to view the session and complete coursework.  You will be required to complete 5 individual assignments. Students will be given one week to complete the final assignment.

Note: This course is applicable towards the Certified Marketing Specialist™ (CMS) designation. If you have questions regarding the course requirements or the CMS designation, please contact


CMA’s Direct Response Marketing Online Certificate course consists of instructor recorded videos, synchronized PowerPoint presentations and discussion boards. Throughout the 10-week course students will be required to complete and submit a discussion post or assignment each week. This course also includes four live interactive webinars, during which students have the opportunity to engage with fellow students and to ask direct questions to the instructor.

The following is a general outline of the course content.

Session 1: Introduction to the course and Direct Response Marketing Principles

  • Definition of direct response marketing
  • Key strategic differences between direct marketing and other forms of marketing
  • Direct marketing today and why it is still relevant

Session 2: Direct Response Marketing Strategy Planning and Development

  • Components of a direct marketing strategy
  • Setting up for success: Questions to ask before you start writing a plan
  • How to develop a direct marketing plan as part of a broader business plan

Session 3: Targeting and Segmentation

  • How to write a target audience description
  • How to use your database to help you narrow and define your target audience
  • Benefits of segmentation
  • Points to consider when developing a segmentation strategy

Session 4: Using your database to drive Direct Response Marketing Success

  • What data should be in your database
  • Best practices to keep your data up to date
  • Different ways you can use your database to drive your business
  • How to use your database to make informed business and marketing decisions

Session 5: Privacy and Permission

  • PIPEDA and CASL overview
  • What does a compliant, effective opt-in statement look like
  • What elements need to be covered in your privacy policy
  • Resources you can use to help you with privacy and compliance questions

Session 6: Setting Measurable Objectives, Key Success Metrics and How to Measure it All

  • How to create a measurable direct marketing objective
  • How to set up key metrics to measure and optimize a direct marketing campaign across all channels
  • Best practices for results reporting
  • Strategies to uncover meaningful insights in DM results

Session 7: Developing a Channel and Media Plan

  • Description of direct response marketing channels and best practices
  • How to evaluate and determine media tactics
  • Third party lists
  • Best practices to help you choose and test lists for your B2B or B2C DM plan

Session 8: Creating Effective DM Offers, Calls to Action and Tests

  • What are the elements of an effective DM offer
  • What makes a compelling call to action
  • DM testing best practices
  • Testing

Session 9: Writing a DM Creative Brief and Evaluation DM Creative

  • Elements that need to be in a DM brief
  • Examples of a DM brief and the creative developed from that brief
  • How to evaluate direct marketing creative

Session 10: Creating Acquisition and Retention Marketing Plans

  • How to develop an acquisition plan
  • How to develop a retention plan
  • Strategies to help mitigate risk in your acquisition and retention plans

Final Assignment


Lisette Gelinas
Marketing Consultant

Lisette Gelinas, a direct marketing specialist, delivers marketing solutions that drive measurable results, across traditional, digital and social channels.  She brings to the table a fierce combination of CRM and relationship building expertise, leadership qualities that can pull together any team to produce outstanding results, and implementation plans that get clients across the finish line.

The bulk of her 20 year career has been spent working at direct response advertising agencies, including Wunderman and Lowe RMP.  Lisette cut her DM teeth developing plans for Columbia House and Book-of-the-Month-Club, as well as helping to launch

DirectProtect.  She has been a media planner, account person, strategic planner and new business lead.  Just recently, Lisette has started her own consulting business. 

As a consultant, she brings insight in B2C and B2B marketing from experience on brands such as Kraft, Colgate, Ford, Sirius XM, Rogers, IBM, Microsoft, Royal Canadian Mint, Wyeth, PC Financial, Eaton’s, Sony, Blue Cross and Chico’s.
From running in-house seminars to sharing knowledge, experiences and opportunities with interns, new staff, peers and extended team members, Lisette enjoys mentoring new direct marketing talent. 
Lisette is proud to serve on the board of directors of an organization very close to her heart, the Open Arms Children’s Foundation, which raises funds to help support orphaned children in China.
Lisette loves fine wine, travelling, kayaking and reading.  She is married with one absolutely-beautiful-in-every-way daughter, and a large extended family that enjoys her creative cooking and baking efforts.  Sweet!


"I think this course was super helpful and focused on all areas Direct Response Marketing, from strategy to execution to delivery of results. Lisette was a great instructor who provided great information, relatable examples and always made herself available to answer questions/provide feedback."
- Dima Alathamena

“I think Lisette is a true professional and very supportive. She is a real tutor." 
- Maryna Piskokha

“I am very excited to implement the different strategies learned in DRM course. Lisette was knowledgeable and informative with her lessons.”
- Shelby Smit

"I found this course extremely helpful in better understanding the considerations that go into effective Direct Response Marketing campaigns.”
- Jennifer Schelfhaut

Tell Us What You Think
  1. If you haven't left a comment here before, you may need to be approved by CMA before your comment will appear. Until then, it won't appear on the entry.
    Thanks for waiting. View CMA's Blogging Policy.