SYS-CON MEDIA Authors: Carmen Gonzalez, Sean Houghton, Glenn Rossman, Ignacio M. Llorente, Xenia von Wedel

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Making - Or Winning - Money The New-Fashioned Way

Making - Or Winning - Money The New-Fashioned Way

PORT WASHINGTON, N.Y., Sept. 14 /PRNewswire/ -- Betsy Tanabe of State College, PA, got a new computer last Christmas and has learned to surf the internet with the best of them. But, unlike hordes of young computer wiz's at neighboring Penn State who are financially strapped, Betsy is a senior citizen, and her affluence is newly enhanced because she won the Publishers Clearing House Sweepstakes by entering the direct mail giant's giveaway online -- at http://www.pch.com/.

"I'm sure glad I got that new computer," said Mrs. Tanabe as she celebrated her $1,000,000 win with family and friends on August 31st after getting the shock of a lifetime. Minutes earlier the Publishers Clearing House Prize Patrol had knocked on her door carrying the "big check," roses and balloons that are staples of the company's long-running TV campaign.

The video-taped excitement of Mrs. Tanabe's "winning moment" was further heightened when the Prize Patrol also delivered a new Ford Thunderbird, a bonus for entering the sweepstakes online. (While the winner's test drive was "wonderful," she chose a $43,570 cash option instead.)

For over fifty years, Publishers Clearing House has been sending out "bulletins" with offers of discounted magazine subscriptions and merchandise. Promises of sweepstakes riches were added to the mailings in 1967. Since then nearly $200 million in major prizes have been awarded -- virtually all to people who dutifully stuck colorful stamps on entry forms they returned via the U.S. Postal Service. This year that pattern is changing, with some lucky people winning the "new-fashioned way": through pch.com.

Besides Mrs. Tanabe, John Hultin and Dan Hillegeist have found pch.com to be particularly enriching. They both won thousands of dollars by entering the sweepstakes online.

Hultin was surprised by the Prize Patrol at his Minnesota home in April. Recovering from the shock of a $10,000 win, the 30-ish Hultin told bystanders and the attendant media that entering via pch.com is so much "fun" and "so easy" that he does so at least weekly. Thousands of others apparently agree, going online frequently to enter the Publishers Clearing House Sweepstakes. And many of them have won $1,000 prizes.

Like most companies, Publishers Clearing House recognizes the growing importance of the internet and is putting increased resources into it. Besides sweepstake entry opportunities, pch.com provides web surfers with shopping opportunities for magazines and merchandise plus a broad array of company information.

"Direct mail put Publishers Clearing House on the map, and we know that millions of consumers will continue to respond to our value and excitement- packed bulletins," said Andy Goldberg, president of PCH. "But pch.com also provides value and excitement plus entertaining games, profiles of our sweepstakes winners and more. In the future we'll be adding lots more contests so that web surfers of all ages will find new ways to win. We'll also be adding value-priced offers based on the specific interests of our customers," he said.

Publishers Clearing House sees "hits" to its website increase dramatically when its periodic TV campaigns are on the air. So PCH management anticipates higher pch.com traffic in October when new commercials will promote "a new Thanksgiving tradition" beyond turkey, parades and football: a million dollar Thanksgiving SuperPrize. Consumers can enter the sweepstakes for this prize by mail as well as at pch.com. Maybe that million dollar winner will provide further proof that "times are a-changing" and that the internet is here to stay.

Publishers Clearing House

CONTACT: Dave Sayer, Publishers Clearing House, +1-516-944-2644,
[email protected]

Web site: http://www.pch.com/

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