Monday, May 29, 2006

Update from the 2006 European Sabre Awards

Last week, Berlin was host city to the second annual European Sabre PR Awards. As a guest of our German agency, Hotwire PR, I had the pleasure of attending this award dinner for the first time, and seeing the results of some great PR campaigns from Europe.

The award ceremony was hosted by Paul Holmes, editor of The Holmes Report, and recognized best-in-class campaigns and agencies throughout Europe.

The variety of the entries across the 50 categories was as fascinating as it was broad, and it was all the more interesting to get a ‘behind’ the scenes view of the judging process from Hotwire’s Co-Founder, Kristin Syltevik, and BEA’s Director, Public Relations EMEA, Sarah Atkinson – both of whom I shared a table with.

They said that the winning campaigns – examples like “The Amazing Bank Account Case Study” and the “Tired of Your Dog? Need to Make and Extra Buck?” campaigns – were compelling, both in the messages they were trying to get out and the results they achieved. They talked about the importance of having clear objectives for a campaign, and demonstrating measurable results – not merely in volume of clips alone, but how these initiatives effected attitudinal and/or behavioural changes in the target audience.

It was a timely reminder that PR is broader than press coverage alone. PR is ultimately about building relationships and trust, with media, influencers, industry bodies and all of an organisation’s publics; whatever form they may take.

It was an inspiring evening with many examples of imaginative work. Congratulations to all the winners for raising the bar and giving us all new examples in excellence to aspire to.


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