DIRECT MARKETING: DMA PRESENTS 55 ECHO AWARDS AT 80TH ANNUAL CONFERENCE: OTIS WINS DIAMOND ECHO; COOK TAKES GOLD MAILBOX

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Otis elevator kicked off the Direct Marketing Association's annual meeting this week by winning one of the direct industry's biggest awards, the DMA Diamond Echo.

United Technologies' Otis unit was honored for a campaign including a brochure, CD-ROM, press release, art poster, newspaper art and satellite video news release purporting to have found a "lost" letter from famed architect Frank Lloyd Wright. The letter outlined Odyssey, Otis' new product touted as the world's first integrated building transit system.

In addition to two special awards-the DMA Diamond Echo and the USPS Gold Mailbox Award-the association presented 55 International Echo Awards. Ten gold, 19 silver and 26 bronze Echoes went to winners culled from more than 1,000 applicants.

The Oct. 5 presentation of the Echoes, the direct marketing world's highest advertising honor, kicked off the DMA's 80th annual conference and exhibition. The four-day convention in Chicago was expected to attract 12,000.

$2.5 BIL SALES LEADS

The winning Otis campaign, at a cost of $350,000, generated $2.5 billion in qualified sales leads for the elevator company and its agency, Decker, Glastonbury, Conn.

Thomas Cook Direct went home with the USPS Gold Mailbox Award for its "Thomas Cook Direct Short Breaks," a direct mail program aimed at encouraging travelers to take short holiday trips with the average price of $512.

The $55,000 campaign used actual vacation photos to bring home the message and garnered a response rate of 18.5%. Barracloush Hall Woolston Gray, London, is the agency.

The 1997 Gold Echo winners are: Children's Memorial Hospital, "Life of a Child" program, via Rapp Collins Worldwide, Chicago; Overseas Adventure Travel, via Tepperman/Tay Associates, Metheun, Mass.; Falter Verlag, "Falter X-Ray Mail," via Palla Koblinger & Partner, Vienna; Royal Mail, "The Morning Post," via Ogilvy & Mather Direct, London; Land Rover, "Discovery Days," via Craik Jones Watson Mitchell Voelkel, London; Otis Elevator, "Odyssey-It's Time for a New Paradigm," via Decker, Glastonbury, Conn.; Pepsi-Cola Canada Beverages, "Keeping the Switchers," via Ogilvy & Mather Direct, Toronto; Guinness Import Co. relationship program, via the Chapman Agency, New York; Mercedes-Benz of North America relationship marketing, via Lowe Direct, New York; and Davis/Panzer Productions, "Highlander 1997 catalog, via Worthington Levy Creative/M-One, Los

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