BRUSSELS - The Belgian Direct Marketing Association (ABMD) has approved extending the Telephone Preference Service (TPS) to the fax. Consumers who do not wish to receive faxed mailings need only put their names on the FPS list. ABDM will manage the list.
The need for a Fax Preference Service arose because so many households in Belgium have one number for phone and fax and are seriously inconvenienced by fax mailings in the middle of the night.
ABMD is organizing a series of events around the FEDMA forum held in Brussels April 19-22. A DM Café will be held in mid-April to discuss direct marketing and sports. It's sponsored by ABMD's public relations council.
On April 28 the PR Council will do a reprise of the best of Europe DM awards to be handed out at the FEDMA forum. Arthur Bell is the featured speaker. The event will be held after ABMD's annual meeting.
ABMD has also decide to form a working group to help new practitioners get a better grasp of the direct marketing industry. It plans to set up a library and to offer a scholarship for the study of direct marketing.
UK DMA forms BTB Council
LONDON - The DMA in the UK is out to recruit members for its new business to business council.
Steven Jenkins, the chairman of the new group, explained that "the council is keen to recruit new members, not just from the agency and supplier sector, but from the client side marketing departments."
Formation of the council, Jenkins said, is long overdue. "It is quite clear from researching any text books on direct marketing that BTB is very poorly represented and it is tempting to believe that this is because it is not well understood.
"Words like 'problematic' and 'difficult' regularly crop up in the few pages of text allocated to the practice of BTB. So clearly we have a problem."
Jenkins noted in the booming British DM industry BTB already accounts "as much as 35 percent of turnover in key sectors. The fact that its practice is so badly represented is lamentable."
Key initiatives the council has underway include the use of BTB methodologies by small and medium size companies and the development of best practice guidelines.
DDV Reform: First Councils Set Up
WIESBADEN - Reform of the German DMA (DDV) is moving ahead briskly with the formation of four new councils that encompass the more cumbersome activities of the discarded specialized groups.
Interactive media was the first out of the gate in restructuring the hard core of agencies, online services practitioners and media, and adding members for other disciplines, a move necessitated by the rapid growth of new media and the industry's need to keep up with them.
The list broker council came next with 30 companies declaring their intention to join. After some lively debate it was decided to keep the council limited to the brokerage business without opening membership rolls to related DM disciplines.
A third council was formed to handle the overflow. This group will focus on "direct mail" and address such subjects as data protection, address management, software development, lettershop and fulfillment.
Telemarketers, call centers, audiotex providers and related enterprises formed a new call center services council. The idea is to attract practitioners as well as vendors to work in the new group.
The council has promulgated an ambitious set of goals:
Formulation and support of the business interests of council members.
Influence on the political, social, economic and legal conditions under which council members operate.
Public relations to boost the goals of the telemarketing industry.
In addition to councils the DDV has initiated a series of forums for discussion of relevant and timely issues. Members have already prepared forums on electronic commerce, call centers and online advertising. They should be organized next month.
Other subjects slated for later discussion include database marketing, address warehousing, BTB, customer loyalty programs and DRTV.
Irish DMA Ponders Full-Time CEO
DUBLIN - The Irish Direct Marketing Association is planning the most important changes in the association's ten year history - the appointment of a full time chief executive and the opening of an independent office.
An independent committee under the leadership of former IDMA chairman Jim Kidd drafted a strategy document late last year which will be discussed at an open evening to be held later this month.
Kidd and his people will seek opinions and ideas from IDMA members during a discussion of the document.
The IDMA's Pub Quiz drew 250 people and raised 4,100 pounds for the IDMA's charities. Hiberninan Group Marketing won the event. The association says this was one of the most successful events it has ever staged.
The events committee is looking for seminar subjects that will interest the membership so it is inviting everybody to suggest topics that interest them.
"We are also inviting those members who are experts in their own field to provide suggested layouts of seminars, which they themselves could present at a later date," a letter sent to the membership said.
At the annual meeting this past winter Bill Moss of Bill Moss & Associates was elected chairman and Michael Killeen of Dialgoue Direct Marketing as vice-chairman.