The Benjamin Franklin Award for Direct Marketing Excellence (Bennys) competition has been a proud Philadelphia tradition for more than 41 years with the "Benny" itself now one of the region's highest honors in direct marketing and advertising.
This year's event and presentation will take place on:
Thursday, May 4, 2017 5:45 P.M. to 9:30 P.M.
Hilton Philadelphia at Penn's Landing 201 South Columbus Blvd. Philadelphia, PA 19106
This is the prestigious event for all marketers and those who work within the industry! We hope to see you as a winner at this year's Bennys Award.
We are excited to announce this year's Award Recipients. This year the PhillyDMA Board of Directors is honored to announce our Direct Marketer of the Year (DMOY) as well as a Lifetime Achievement Award Recipient. And, for the first time we have established two well deserved awards, Future Business Leader Award (FBL) and Supplier of the Year Award (SOY).
Mark Mandia - Direct Marketer of the Year
Mark Mandia gets the big picture, and devises the game plan to manage and guide his direct marketing agency with a clear view of where the overall Direct Marketing industry is going. His personal commitment to “do right” (derived from his alma mater St. Joe’s magis to “live greater”) has enabled DMW to better serve clients. This ethic drives him to facilitate and support colleagues while keeping the agency strong, vital, and independent - as well as actively contributing to the profession and PhillyDMA through the years.
When Mark joined DMW in the fall of 2006, he joined an agency with proud tradition in mail, broadcast, and print with a fledgling digital practice. Since then, his influence and leadership have yielded numerous organizational achievements in his decade at DMW Direct:
Most recognizes that DMW’s success would not be possible without exemplary people. Mark is a facilitator and catalyst; he knows how team members work, what they do best, and arranges players and the playing field to enable the team to win and prospect. He champions his colleagues unwaveringly.
Mark places a relentless emphasis on professional and personal development through training. Today, nearly everyone at the agency regularly participates in on and off-site training events.
To drive focus and expertise in areas of core business, Mark created the Healthcare Practice Leader position, emphasizing the agency’s thought leadership in this area.
Mark has spearheaded and initiated significant growth in the agency’s digital practice over the past decade, recruiting senior strategic talent. In just the past few years, digital fees were up 91%.
Mark championed DMW Direct’s Linda Armstrong (EVP and Healthcare Practice Leader) as she was honored with the 2013 PhillyDMA Lifetime Achievement Award (June 2013).
More recently, Mark put forth DMW Direct’s Renee Mezzanotte (EVP, Client Services) to be recognized as one of Philly Ad Club’s Top Women in Advertising (February 2017).
He has nominated VP, Digital Marketing Justin Stauffer for consideration as one of the Philadelphia Business Journal’s “40 Under 40” Award (2017).
As evidence of his commitment to excellence, since Mark joined DMW Direct, the agency has been received 26 “Benny” awards.
Mark has consistently sought to not only empower and develop his colleagues and staff, but he has also demonstrated a sincere commitment to the industry and profession at large. Mark served as Treasurer and Board Member for the Philadelphia Direct Marketing Association (PhillyDMA) from 2009 to 2013 and again from 2014 to 2015. He is a member of the PhillyDMA, the DMA, the Philly Ad Club, and the American Advertising Federation (AAF).
He is also one to keep in touch, supporting, providing recommendations, and helping career growth to professional friends and colleagues outside DMW Direct. Whether through association at the PhillyDMA, St. Joe’s alumni, past co-worker, Mark is happy to be a reference source, gladly fostering the careers of so many.
Marjorie Bicknell - Lifetime Achievement Award
Our Lifetime Achievement Award recipient, is no stranger to any of us. She has been a longstanding member of PhillyDMA, has been the Committee Chair and has raised the bar for the Benny Awards. She served as Board President for three years, reestablishing some of the great programs you have all come to expect and has continued to help out The PhillyDMA even after her retirement from the Board with helpful suggestions for venues and program ideas. She is an outstanding copywriter and creative director with 30 years experience creating award-winning direct marketing and advertising campaigns. Has been honored with over 38 industry awards for her work including an Echo Honorable Mention, a Mobius, 8 Communicators and over 22 Benjamin Franklin Awards for Direct Marketing. Her specialties include experienced in the following industries: retail, insurance, banking and finance, telecommunications, technology, non-profit, retirement communities, publishing and collectibles. In addition, Marj is a published, award-winning playwright whose works have been honored by the Joseph Jefferson Committee (Frankenstein - 1981-82 Season), Pennsylvania Youth Music Theater, York Little Theater (2003 Pennsylvania Playwright for The Family Room), and TNT Pops National New Play Festival 2012-2013 for The Boys Club.)
Marjorie Bicknell is a founding member of The Playwrights Alliance of Pennsylvania and the author of a number of full-length plays including, "The Family Room," "Joint Custody," and "The Boys Club."
She holds a Master of Arts Degree in Speech from Northwestern University and also works as an actor and director.
Ashley Wetherhold - Future Business Leader - FIRST AWARD RECIPIENT
PhillyDMA’s Future Leader for her tireless commitment to best practices in direct response marketing, specifically in the emerging field of Content Marketing and Social Media Strategy. Ashley leads a team of content and social marketers committed to finding the most relevant, timely and engaging topics and executional strategies for any audience segment. She takes an analytic approach to parsing and analyzing social listening data to find competitive gaps, unique audience engagement opportunities, key influencer relationships, and innovative channel deployment strategies. She then turns those unearthed opportunities into successful cross-channel campaigns. Her team creates content, develops the optimal channel strategy, sets goals and budgetary limits, executes media buys, and monitors and analyzes both raw data and human response for real-time campaign optimization, interaction and amplification.
Ashley was promoted to this leadership role within the Quattro organization quickly. She joined Quattro in August of 2014 and within a year was leading her respective team. But even before Quattro, at SAP, her talents stood out and were quickly recognized with increased responsibility. She worked at Tag Communications as a Social Media Manager on the SAP account, and after only one year was tapped to take on a Digital Strategist role. Ashley’s insight and wisdom well beyond her years has made her a true “rising star” within every organization lucky enough to have her. Various brands have tapped Ashley’s unique ability to find the content and social "gems” that will create brand engagement – from healthcare organizations like Independence Blue Cross, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Nebraska, and Evergreen Health to financial corporations seeking a deeper brand presence such as Ditech Mortgage.
When we consider what a “future leader” looks like in today’s multi-channel marketing world, Ashley demonstrates everything that the PhillyDMA embraces: the ability to analyze data, develop segmentation strategies, create personas and then develop effective communication strategies that reach the right person, at the right time, with the right message.
Independent Graphics - Supplier of the Year - FIRST AWARD RECIPIENT
The PhillyDMA recognizes the Ciampi family and Independent Graphics as our first Annual Supplier of the Year Award. The Team at Independent has been a long standing embassador to the direct marketing community and consistently achieves outstanding accomplishments. They continue to make contributions to the PhillyDMA and our industry on all levels. And if that wasn't enough, they have demonstrated involvement and support of the association through their available resources (financial and personnel).
Independent Graphics, Inc. was founded in 1980 by Lou Ciampi, Sr. The company was just a one man operation, with Lou Sr. at the helm. He oversaw sales, manufacturing, delivery, and bookkeeping; he did it all. During those early years, Independent ran a few “two up” spot color presses and had very modest capabilities in the finishing arena.
They produced mainly stationery, forms, and one and two color brochures and manuals for the insurance company which was housed in the same location. Lou Sr. had a vision of providing his clients with a product that was delivered on time, every time. He had the foresight to provide his customers with the marketing solutions that helped them effectively sell their products.
Since then, Independent has grown into a 30-person company that operates five days a week/24 hours per day. Their 29” sheet fed presses and 26” igen provide their clients with the quality, price, and turnaround needed to thrive in today’s fiercely competitive market. Today, Lou Sr.’s sons run the business with Lou Jr. as the President and Jim Ciampi as the vice president. They lead the Independent team of marketing and direct mail professionals who have an uncanny knack of getting your printed material where you need it, when you need it. Independent prides itself on being your go-to source for exceptional quality and fast turnarounds. Independent Graphics is strategically located in Northeastern PA, with their trucks delivering jobs to the Philadelphia suburbs five days a week. Manuals, brochures, catalogs, and direct mail pieces are all delivered where you need it and when you need it.
Independent Graphics, Inc. has been a member of the PhillyDMA for over ten years. They are also members of the PSDA, PBBA, and Idelliance. Independent offers the best of both worlds: seasoned print professionals with old-fashioned family-type customer service. We are honored to provide this award to Independent.