INTERNET BOOKSELLER Bertelsmann Online (BOL) gave away 20,000 books - even postage and packing was free - in a single afternoon in a promotional bonanza worth a claimed £140,000. Said to be a ‘thank-you’ to customers for making BOL’s first six months’ trading a success, all 20,000 books were claimed within two hours and the giveaway was twice over-subscribed [thereby presenting the ever-canny BOL with data and e-mail addresses for a handy 60,000 prospects]. Bertelsmann, one of the world’s largest media groups, controls 90% of UK book club sales thorough its ownership of Book Club Associates.
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