The Drum PR Awards 2019 judging day has come to a close and we can now reveal the hopeful finalists for the inaugural year.
Chair of the judging panel, Michelle Lavipour, global head of brand communications at Diageo, says that the entries that impressed her were those that clearly defined objectives, set out a compelling strategy, showed creativity and demonstrated results beyond column inches alone.
"The best entries demonstrated how the most effective PR professionals are excelling at a broad range of communication disciplines, fully embracing a multichannel world and have an increasing focus on rigorous measurement," she explained.
"The standout entries also confirmed that at its heart PR remains what it has always been - great storytelling that cuts through the noise."
Many of the submissions showed campaigns that placed equal importance across all communication and storytelling platforms and channels, not just news pages, expressed Tangerine Communications' associate director, Lisa Hale.
"What was interesting to see was how some entries list media coverage as a prime result ahead of other more impressive and hard-hitting and impactful metrics," she said. "Even when the target audience was a younger demographic, press coverage was listed as the main hero result."
This year's finalists have really been hitting the nail on the head. Hale was particularly inspired by the Most Effective Use of Creativity entrants.
"I was hoping to read about never-been-done-before ideas that were innovative and got cut through as a result but still solved real business and brand objectives. The category included some amazing entries that did just that."
Finalists of the Most Effective Use of Creativity are:
Lisa Jeden, global head of brand PR and corporate communications, Bacardi was most taken by the B2B entries which demonstrated real creativity within corporate storytelling.
"These made us smile," explains Jeden. "Proving that B2B can be fun, entertaining and informative. I was particularly drawn to ideas that took advantage of digital and social tools or really identified strategies and activities that enabled the team to squeeze out every possible angle for pitching."
Finalists of the B2B category
Another category that caught judges eyes was the Best Event, Stunt or Promotional Activation. Lizzie Dewhurst, head of communications and PR at Publicis Group said that this category represented entries with powerful creative storytelling combined with effective business results for brands.
"With the stronger entries, the ideas had a clear and authentic connection back to the brand purpose; they brought new content, longevity and the ability to scale the concept to other channels."
Nominees for Best Event, Stunt or Promotional Activation
A full list of the finalists can be found here. Tickets for the awards show on September 17 at The Marriott Hotel, Grovesnor Square, London can be purchased now.
Partner of The Drum PR Awards is Winmo.