UK DMA Advances Environmental Awareness Drive

The United Kingdom's Direct Marketing Association formed a working party of industry experts responsible for developing efforts to reduce direct mail waste through increased use of suppression files by direct marketers, the association said last week.

The announcement came at the International Direct Marketing Fair, held March 2-4 in London.

Mark Roy, chief executive of the REaD Group, is deputy chair of the working party. Other members include David Robottom, DMA director of postal affairs and industry development; Tessa Kelly, DMA director of compliance operations; Lara Shannon, head of Planet Ark Foundation in the UK; and Tony Lamb, managing director of Lamb Direct Consulting Limited and chair of the DMA Data Council.

The move is part of an effort between the UK DMA and the Planet Ark Foundation, an Australian organization that works to show people how to reduce their daily impact on the environment.

Focusing on direct marketers and suppliers, the effort aims to help the UK DMA reach environmental targets set out in its Producer Responsibility Agreement for Direct Mail and Promotions Waste. Under the agreement, 30 percent of all waste direct mail must be recycled by the end of 2005. This rises to 55 percent by 2009 and to 70 percent by 2013.

Part of the campaign is to raise awareness of the Mailing Preference Service, which lets consumers sign up to be removed from up to 95 percent of direct mail lists in the UK. The service has 1.2 million names registered, the DMA said.

The campaign also will highlight the need for direct marketers to consider brand damage caused by poorly targeted direct mail, the long-term cost savings associated with using suppression files and the issue of corporate social responsibility.

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