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Discover Card to Promote Classical Music

Deutsche Grammophon (DG), the world’s oldest continuously running record label, Borders Books, Music & Cafe and Discover(R) Card have joined together to create the “100 Reasons You Should Be Listening To Classical Music” campaign which kicks off in early September and runs through the DG centenary in December 1998.

DG, the home of the “Yellow Cartouche,” the most recognizable emblem in classical music, embarks upon this program to illustrate how classical music plays an essential role in expanding a listener’s horizons and enhancing everyday life. With educational components, extensive community outreach and a multitude of individual promotions, this marks the first time a classical music label has participated in a program of this scope and magnitude.

Albert Imperato, vice president, Deutsche Grammophon and co-creator of the “100 Reasons” campaign, believes that classical music is a living, vital, content-rich genre poised to make major inroads in the U.S. marketplace. Discover Card and Borders Books, Music & Cafe are also convinced it’s time to “return to the classics.” That’s why they’ve aligned with Deutsche Grammophon to bring a unique synergy to the “100 Reasons” campaign.

Borders Books, Music & Cafe offers a true nineties shopping experience to its customers through a stimulating environment integrating comprehensive retail areas, cafes and thoughtful promotional tie-ins. “It is the perfect complement to this lifestyle-based program,” says Imperato.

“The synergy of our three entities provides the consumer with a multifaceted positive experience,” says Jaime Certilman of Universal Marketing and Promotions and co-creator of the program.

Discover Card is a progressive service provider with a great interest in the arts and a keen interest in music. “Discover Card has made a major commitment to projects that support music education,” says Lisa B. Lampert, vice president of Discover Card Marketing, NOVUS Services Inc. “We are proud to establish a partnership with Deutsche Grammophon and Borders Books, Music & Cafe in order to bring classical music into communities across the nation.”

Vicki Marshall of Borders adds, “Borders is thrilled to partner with Discover Card and Deutsche Grammophon. All three parties clearly understand the importance of highlighting classical music to our customers.”

The campaign will combine carefully selected CD releases with slogans that link the classical music listening experience with the pursuit of a heightened quality of life.

“Get Away From It All,” “Be a Part of History” and “Get in Touch With Your Feelings,” are just a few of the enlightening reasons offered.

The campaign goes interactive with a click to the 100 Reasons web site (http://www.polygram-us.com), where listeners new and old can get involved. Want to “Meet Interesting People?” Try “Dvorak for Two.” Got the urge to “Travel to Exotic Places?” Slip Faure’s “Pavane” or “Piazzolla for Two” into your CD player.

Buy your classical music at Borders and charge it on your Discover Card. And make sure it’s a DG recording.

The campaign is aiming to reach and educate potential classical listeners beyond the traditional boundaries, targeting broad mainstream media — from high end national publications to local college newspapers. Discover Card is also offering complete coverage in a “music newsletter” that will be seen by millions of Cardmembers this year, including a chance to win two hundred Borders shopping sprees.

As title sponsor, Discover Card will be featured on posters, brochures, and point-of-purchase materials. CD samplers will be handed out at sign-up tables for the Discover Card. The sponsorship could also extend to tie-in concert events, radio programs, and souvenir books.

Borders’ stores are the venue for the bulk of the “100 Reasons” activities, most prominently the in-store gondola listening stations which will feature five slogans and their corresponding CDs. The slogans and titles will rotate every three months, offering five new reasons to listen, and five more classical CDs to explore. Borders will also be the vehicle for many more promotions from shopping sprees to an offer for a 50 cent Mocha Freeze in their cafes to further the “100 Reasons” experience. Deutsche Grammophon has already begun “seeding” the marketplace with samplers and posters. A groundbreaking eighteen month ad campaign for “100 Reasons” is already under way.

DG artists will make in-store appearances at Border Books, Music & Cafe stores. A cassette sampler will be inserted into each of the 25,000 educational brochures being distributed by the stores within their local communities.

Best-bet and must-have recording from DG’s incomparable catalogue will be featured in colorful, multipage retail brochures. T-shirts, posters, banners, and flyers will all promote the “100 Reasons” campaign.

There are lots of reasons classical music is ready to explode in the U.S. marketplace. Perhaps even 100. Entertainment Weekly has already reported that at least 10 major film and theater projects will be merging traditional classical music stories and images into mainstream entertainment over the next three to five years. The appeal of classical music has survived for centuries. Its beauty, substance, and lifelong appeal are now headed for a broader new generation of listeners.

Deutsche Grammophon, with international headquarters in Hamburg, Germany, is the world’s largest continuously-operating record company. Founded in 1898 by gramophone inventor Emile Berliner, the famous “Yellow Label” is devoted exclusively to classical music. One of the oldest companies in a relatively young industry, Deutsche Grammophon, and its sister label Archiv, is dedicated to recording the world’s premiere musicians and strives to maintain the highest possible artistic and technological standards.

Discover Card, issued by a business unit of Morgan Stanley, Dean Witter, Discover & Co., is a general purpose credit and financial services card that is accepted nationwide wherever the NOVUS(R) sign is displayed.

Founded in Ann Arbor, Michigan in 1971, Borders stores have become places for social gatherings and forums for ideas and entertainment. Now with over 170 locations nationwide, Borders is committed to bringing local and national authors, musicians and celebrities to its stores. The company successfully went public in 1995 (NYSE:BGP), and today over 90 percent of full-time Borders employees with six months tenure have stock in the company.

Borders is part of Ann Arbor-based Borders Group Inc., which also owns Waldenbooks Co. Inc., the nation’s largest chain of mall bookstores with over 900 stores throughout the United States.

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