Digital PR Nuggets: 3 Proven Rewards Of Winning Awards

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I am publishing this digital PR article the day after the Academy Awards broadcast. So what does Digital PR have to do with the Oscars? Well, plenty, actually.

The Oscars is THE publicity event of the year in the entertainment industry. And whether you watch them or not, they’re BIG news. So how can you best leverage awards with your business and your industry?

I’ve identified 9 proven ways that awards can benefit your company, your image, your brand and your ability to generate quality leads. Look for my top 3 ways later in this article.

The good news with all this? No fancy black tie event or androgynous golden man statues are required. Your award event can be 100% virtual. And much more.

But first, a reality check. Because nothing substantial happens without an awards strategy. After all, the real benefit of  awards is far more tangible than an ego “pump-up.”

Do know that digital PR is the perfect vehicle to communicate your award news. Especially when creating your very own awards program. There’s already an entrenched award for your industry? No matter.  There’s always room for more. Especially when you go negative. (All in fun of course.)

Case in point: The Razzies. Razzie winners have the dubious distinction of being the worst in the entertainment industry. (Heard of “giving someone the raspberry? That’s the idea…)

And it’s no accident when the Razzies announce their winners. That’s right. The day of the Oscars! (And in so doing, grab a ton of digital PR and offline publicity.) Want to capture a lot more attention? Time your awards announcement so it “piggybacks” another awards show’s visibility. In this case, the Razzies are riding the wave of Oscar Buzz. And getting a TON of digital publicity via news sites, film sites and more.

From a conceptual standpoint, the Razzies positioning is brilliant.  Simply put, they are the “anti-awards.”

Not convinced going negative is the right approach? Ever hear of Mr. Blackwell’s Ten Worst Dressed Women List?” According to wikipedia, the list started way back in 1960. Publicity wise, “By its third year every television and radio network and virtually all news services worldwide began to cover it.” The list ran for 47 years until the death of Mr. Blackwell in 2008.

Now that you have some context on awards (and maybe some ideas brewing) I present…

Digital PR Nuggets: 3 Proven Rewards Of Winning Awards

Reward #1: Credibility and Authority

My previous business background was in creative direction and copywriting for ad agencies. (Including my own.) It’s been 18 years since I’ve worked for another marketing communications company. Yet, my digital PR bio, my resource box (for articles) and the “about” section (for my press releases) still mention the awards I garnered some time ago.

Why? Because of the credibility and the authority that comes with winning those awards. Obviously, not all awards stand the test of time but many of them do. And many of them are very digital PR-able.

Example:  “The Clio Awards.” This is one of the most prestigious awards in the ad industry. Many people outside of the industry know of them because the winners are often profiled on network TV shows.

I’ve won two Clios for some public service television commercials. And because it’s part of my background and history, and people know them, I still reference them.

Which leads us to the next reward…

Reward #2: Longevity

How long have The Oscars been around? This year marks the 83rd Academy Awards. And the Grammys? A relative youngster at only 53 years. Curious about why they’re called the Grammys?

The Grammys comes from “gramophone,” which was an early name for a Victrola, which was an early name for a record player. (You know, that’s how we listened to music prior to CDs, DVDs, and iPods.)

Now what about marketing and digital PR?

You’ve seen how one marketing tactic is hot one year and not the next? Well Awards are timeless. Every year there’s the 25th annual or 10th annual or whatever annual award. And the fact I talk about my awards even years latter is further testament to their staying power.

That’s especially important if you’re considering your own awards. Sure, you’ll invest more time getting it off the ground. But then you’ve got a system for generating publicity every time the awards season comes around.

Which leads us to the next reward…

Reward #3: Built-in Perpetual News

Whether it’s an award you win or an awards program you create on your own awards is a proven vehicle for digital PR news. In fact, you can use your clout as award winner or award program creator to comment on other awards!

And every time you mention awards it’s further branding of yourself as an expert authority.

BONUS! Reward #4: New-Found Access To Industry Leaders

When you win an award, you are in select company. This is an ideal opportunity to network with other winners of the same or similar award. It immediately gives you something in common with one another.

And if you have your own awards program, you’ll need judges, right? What better way to connect with leaders in your industry then to ask them to help judge award entries?

So how and where do you start? With these three action steps:

Action Step #1: Brainstorm award ideas and programs. (Based on what you’ve learned via this article.)

Action Step #2: Inventory what awards you’ve already won.

Action Step #3: List 3 ways you can newly leverage your awards in your content and marketing materials.

Are you now at awards with new eyes? Good. Now lets continue the conversation…

What award have you won that you are most proud of—and why?

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