Winning an award should be a big deal for any business or organisation

by Raymond Notarangelo

Monday, December 5th, 2016

Why Media Understanding is Key to Success – the approach of Holyrood PR Edinburgh

Coverage for the Scottish Business Resilience Centre and their award ceremony. 
IT IS an acknowledgement of excellence in your field – and recognition from your peers on the quality of your product or expertise.

Sadly, the media don’t always see awards in the same light as the happy winner.A surfeit of awards events has created a ‘fatigue factor’ among the media; a feeling of here is yet-another-award-ceremony, causing them to generally switch off to the notion of any PR.

So how do you make an awards event a PR success? Even more challenging, is how do you make it a PR success when the client is hosting the awards for the first time and the desire is to position them in the highest possible way so that there is every chance of sponsors coming forward to support them year-after-year?

That was the challenge set to us by Scottish Business Resilience Centre who were behind the first Scottish Cyber Awards, an event aimed at rewarding the great work that is happening in Scotland to protect businesses and individuals from the threat of e-crime.

Thanks to our close relationship with Scottish Business Resilience Centre we have built up an exceptional bank of knowledge about cyber crime. Indeed our work in raising the profile of Scottish Business Resilience Centre’s work in highlighting the dangers of cyber crime won us two top industry awards.

Read how we turned Scottish Business Resilience Centre’s cyber strategy into to two Gold Awards at the CIPR Scottish PRide Awards

The first stage was to build up a buzz of interest in advance of the event. That involved securing the information on the finalists from each category to issue a general release; and then creating a separate local media release for each of the regions that the finalists were located in.

This activity delivered a range of high impact coverage that reached more than 160,000.

Check out the coverage achieved when we announced the finalists in the inaugural Scottish Cyber Awards

The next phase of the campaign was to attend the awards night to manage the announcement of the winners and co-ordinate photography – for security reasons the winners were not able to announced until the night. We also worked with Scottish Business Resilience Centre to have two key journalists to attend the ceremony, buying their support for the event and also ensuring they delivered valuable coverage.

An expertly-written media release was planned in advance – complete with key messages and agreed quotes from key partners which focused on the significance of the awards rather than simply reporting on the winners to try to address the fatigue factor issue – thereby eliminating the need to secure last-minute sign off or risk delays in trying to track people down on the night or the following day. The release – with the names of the winners – was issued immediately after the event.

To maximise the interest, each of the winners had a release tailored specifically for them to be issued to their trade and local media with their winner’s image from the night – this included sourcing individual comments for each of them to ensure the materials were truly bespoke.

The post-event media successes was superb:

– 16 news articles, creating an approximate 470,000 opportunities to see. 

– Key regional coverage, with features in the Edinburgh Evening News, Glasgow Evening Times and Ayrshire Post
– Business press coverage, with features in Scotsman, Daily Business, The National and SBNN
– Important trade coverage, recognising winners in academia and legal circles, including publicnow, Scottish Legal News and Journal of the Law Society of Scotland

– Positive, feel-good press recognition for all winners 

Feedback from Scottish Business Resilience Centre was that the awards were a complete success – a sell-out event with wide profile that has already resulted in many sponsors coming forward to the make the 2017 Awards bigger and better.

Is YOUR next award ceremony in need of a boost? Could your sector benefit for PR success?

The Scottish Business Resilience Centre has seen a significant growth in public awareness through its work with Holyrood PR. We’d love to speak to you about your business.

Get in touch with one of our Scottish PR experts by using the form below or calling us on 0131 561 2244.

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Raymond Notarangelo

Raymond Notarangelo, co-founded Scottish PR agency, Holyrood PR after spotting a gap for colourful and innovative public relations in Edinburgh. He now leads a team providing media relations, social media, video, photography, brand newsrooms, crisis communication and media relations.

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