German DM Award Goes to AOL

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BERLIN - AOL Germany was a co-winner earlier this month of the prestigious EDDI award presented at the DDV's (Germany's DMA) annual meeting and prize dinner held here on April 7. The second EDDI went to Deutsche Post AG.

The acronym stands for "success through direct marketing" and AOL won for a campaign to win new customers using "the most modern database management tools" in line with the principle that "every customer is a target group." Since last September AOL has added 500,000 new customers.

The German post office won for its overall achievement as "the motor of direct marketing in Germany," DDV said in a statement announcing the winners. It cited the Post's data monitoring and its national network of 40 DM centers.

Holger Kalvelage, the award jury foreman, called Deutsche Post "the German institution that has helped make direct marketing into a dialogue marketing discipline." AOL, Germany, he added, was "a shooting star online and on the Internet."

Some 24 prizes in eight categories also were awarded at the prize dinner, held at the Intercontinental Hotel on Budapester Strasse near the famed Brandenburg gate that once divided the city.

This is the second year in a row that the DDV, which is based in Wiesbaden outside Frankfurt, has held its meeting and prize dinner in the old and new German capital.

But Holger Albers, the DDV managing director, said his association does not plan to move to Berlin. "It's a way of showing the flag and that ought to be enough. Opinions are still split about Berlin."

He noted that few trade and other associations had yet moved their headquarters near the new center of power. "Not everybody is convinced about Berlin as the new place to be, and we aren't either. The situation is very much in flux."

The annual conference drew about 200 member companies, some 25 percent of the membership, while 600 people paid to come to the dinner, a somewhat smaller group than last year. "We made it smaller this year so that people had more chance to network," Albers said.

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