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Associates International and clients win at PDMA Benjamin Franklin Awards

Press release from the issuing company

Wilmington, DE – Associates International, Inc. – formerly Associates Graphic Services – a leading integrated marketing services provider, announced that it and two clients have won a record number of honors at the Philadelphia Direct Marketing Association (PDMA) Benjamin Franklin Award for Direct Marketing Excellence Event held June 3, 2010.

For its work with Barclaycard US, marketing the US Airways Dividend Miles MasterCard, Associates International won Benny awards in each of three categories: Direct Mail, Acquisition Offer to Purchase, Financial; Internet/Interactive, Acquisition to Purchase; and Multi-Media, Acquisition to Purchase.

The highly personalized, integrated program – dubbed "Miles Ahead, Worries Behind" – is a three-wave campaign that incorporates direct mail, personalized URLs, and e-mail communications.  The strategy focuses on delivering dynamic, upbeat, engaging, and personal messaging that conveys trust in a personal and conversational tone.  Response rates for the campaign topped 13 percent, far surpassing the industry average of one percent, and converted nearly all high-value customers.  Additionally, 31 percent of site visitors provided e-mail addresses and permission for future communications.

"We are pleased to have been recognized by the Philadelphia Direct Marketing Association," said Michelle Bottomley, Chief Marketing Officer, Barclaycard US.  "The US Airways card marketing program was designed to engage the target audience using highly digital channels with personalized content.  The response rates delivered beyond our expectations, showing the power of digitally engaged customers.  We are thrilled to have such creative partners who brought the idea to life in a high-impact way."

For its life event marketing program, "BirthdayPak" created with RMG/The Primacy Effect, Associates International won Benny awards in each of two categories.  Bennys were given in Internet/Interactive, Invitation to Inquire and Multi-Media, Invitation to Inquire categories, and an Honorable Mention was presented in the Direct Mail, Invitation to Inquire category.

The BirthdayPak integrates compelling direct mail, online, and e-mail marketing and leverages the powerful psychological consumer spending trigger – a birthday.  The program achieved remarkable results including a 12.8 percent response rate, 78 percent conversion (or opt-in) rate, and redemption rates ranging from 8 percent to 35 percent.  By hitting the right target audience with the right offers, the program gave participating advertisers a 340 percent return on marketing investment.

"We are extremely pleased to have our clients and our team recognized by peers as being among the best of the best in the direct marketing industry," said Dave Zamorski, Chief Operating Officer, Associates International.  "It is rewarding that the partnerships we've forged with our clients produce exceptional work and results."

The Benjamin Franklin Award for Direct Marketing Excellence competition has been a proud Philadelphia tradition for more than 37 years with the "Benny" itself now one of the region's highest honors in direct marketing and advertising.  A panel of direct marketing experts from the Direct Marketing Club of New York judged this year's submissions and awarded 33 winners and one honorable mention in categories that include direct mail, social media, Internet/interactive, multi-media, three dimensional, television, and print.