It s a Wrap! DMA07 Conference & Exhibition Pulled Together DMA's 'Five Pillars' of Member Services
October 26, 2007 — In a six-day whirlwind of activity, the Direct Marketing Association (DMA) integrated all five pillars of its member service into its flagship show of the year — DMA07 Conference & Exhibition, which took place October 13-18 at McCormick Place West in Chicago, IL.
The largest global gathering of multichannel direct marketers saw more than 12,000 attendees partake in more than 150 educational sessions, and view the wares of more than 575 exhibiting companies.
Chicago Mayor Richard Daley delivered welcoming remarks to delegates at the Opening General Session, the Direct Marketing Educational Foundation (DMEF) raised more than $500,000 during its awards dinner and Auction for Education, and stellar keynoters spoke.
Insights from innovative business leaders began with pre-conference keynoter John B. Adams, Jr., chairman and CEO, The Martin Agency, and wove through the speeches of general session keynoters Kenneth Cole, chairman and CEO, Kenneth Cole Productions; Shelly Lazarus, chairman and CEO, Ogilvy & Mather Worldwide; and the Jimmy “Jimbo” Wales, president, Wikia Inc.
“Our annual convention exemplifies the best DMA has to offer,” said Paul McDonnough, DMA group show director. “Advocacy, brand building, education, networking, as well as research and market intelligence were integrated throughout DMA07 — from the keynote speeches to the 2007 International ECHO Awards Gala.”
Day One — Saturday, October 13
DMA07 kicked off on Saturday with Pre-Conference Intensives. This two-day special DMA07 event presented in-depth learning in eight key areas: Creative Strategies & Execution, Database Marketing, Direct Marketing University, DRTV, Email Marketing, Mobile Marketing, Online Optimization, and Search Engine Marketing Primer.
From there it was on to the Hyatt Regency where conferees connected and danced at the scat-themed inaugural kick-off party. The “Old School Chicago”-themed DMA07 Launch Party relived the energy of the roaring ‘20s — minus Prohibition — at Club 151 in the Hyatt Regency Chicago.
Simultaneously, black ties prevailed at the Direct Marketing Educational Foundation’s (DMEF) Annual Awards Dinner, where the Foundation presented its Edward N. Mayer Educational Leadership Award to Litle & Co. Chairman and Founder Tim Litle, and its Corporate Leadership Award to Draftfcb. The Foundation raised more than $500,000 that night, courtesy of “Direct Marketers Gone Wild!” — its live and silent Auction for Education.
Earlier that day, the Foundation re-elected as Chairman Al Dyon, chief marketing officer of DMRA. Dyon was rejoined by Gary Laben, president and CEO of KnowledgeBase Marketing, as vice chairman/chairman-elect; DMA President & CEO John A. Greco, Jr. as vice chairman; and Thomas J. “Tim” Litle, chairman, Litle & Company, as secretary. Peg Kuman, president of PDS-Anchor, was elected treasurer and the Board also elected nine new trustees.
Day Two — Sunday, October 14
As Pre-Conference Intensives continued, The Martin Agency’s John Adams took the podium for his keynote, “Smart Advertising...It’s More Than Just the Campaign, It’s the Numbers: The Power of Direct Response Campaigns.”
That afternoon, hundreds of DMA07 attendees searched out the bleating bagpipes that beckoned them to the Exhibit Hall’s grand opening party.
In the midst of it all, DMA announced the election of new officers and Board members for 2007–2008. DMA’s Annual Business Meeting, which was held at The Ritz-Carlton Chicago, marked term inceptions for five new directors and new Board Chairman Donn Rappaport, who is also Chairman/CEO of the American List Counsel, Inc. Rappaport, who served as Board vice chairman in 2007, succeeded AKS Marketing & Media LLC Partner Markus Wilhelm, who will continue to serve on the Board.
Delegates noticed the DMA07 Show Daily available throughout McCormick Place West, as DMA and Target Marketing Group again partnered to bring the publication to Annual attendees on Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday.
Day Three — Monday, October 15
As the bulk of conferees arrived, Chicago Mayor Richard Daley welcomed direct marketers to his Windy City for DMA07’s opening general session. Presaged by the public servant’s words, DMA President & CEO John A. Greco, Jr. spoke about the Association’s commitment to protecting the public. Greco announced the Association’s new “Commitment to Consumer Choice” (CCC) guidelines that apply to all DMA members using mail to communicate with consumers. The CCC is DMA’s public assurance that all Association members will follow specific practices to honor consumer choice in the receipt of solicitations.
In addition to Mayor Daley and Greco, US Representative Danny Davis (D-IL), who is the chairman of the House subcommittee with jurisdiction over the US Postal Service, and outgoing DMA Chairman Markus Wilhelm spoke to those attending the opening general session.
They were followed by keynoter Kenneth Cole, who spoke about “Responsible Leadership in Responsible Times.” Cole, author of Footnotes: What You Stand For Is More Important Than What You Stand In, stressed that profits and principles should be merged business priorities.
Day Four — Tuesday, October 16
Shelly Lazarus wowed the DMA07 crowd with “Changing Faces of Direct — Reinventing the Client, the Consumer and the Agency,” as DMA honored similar “super star” leaders and campaigns that have contributed to direct marketing’s skyrocketing power.
Microsoft-MSN earned DMA’s 2007 Marketer of the Year Award, which is given to those who represent achievement, innovation, and leadership in the direct marketing community.
Later that morning, Ronald L. Bliwas, president/CEO of A. Eicoff & Company, the largest direct response television agency in the nation, and Charles D. Morgan, chairman of the board and company leader of Acxiom Corporation, a firm that integrates data, services, and technology, were inducted into the DMA Hall of Fame at a luncheon.
On Tuesday night, hilarious “Deal or No Deal” host Howie Mandel presided over the 2007 International ECHO Awards Gala, which was held at Chicago’s historic Union Station. This year, DMA handed out a total of 130 ECHO Awards.
Day Five — Wednesday, October 17
Jimmy “Jimbo” Wales outlined his ideas for “User-Generated Media: Leading the Marketing Mix in the Digital Era” during his keynote. The entrepreneur who is synonymous with Wikipedia, the user-generated online encyclopedia, elaborated on his vision for the coming Web universe of publicly-generated data.
The General Session wound down as the Post-Conference Intensives heated up.
Day Six — Thursday, October 18
DMA07 wrapped up on Thursday with Post-Conference Intensive tracks at the Hyatt Regency. The specialized workshops focused on: Achieving Breakthrough Opt-In-Driven Multichannel Marketing Results; Acquisition/Retention and Loyalty Marketing; Beginner's Guide to Database Marketing Analytics; Fast and Furious Creative Tune-Up; Marketing Automation; New Media; and Online Consumer Trust.
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