Opinion: How award wins such as Product of the Year help build a PRable brand story

Opinion: How award wins help build a PRable brand story

Antonia Goddard, marketing and communications executive at Product of the Year, explores how brands can leverage winning an industry award.

Antonia Goddard

In the age of instant digital celebrities, Love Island gossip, clickbait and fat-busting secrets, there’s more competition than ever to grab a few column inches, never mind a headline.

Journalists are time-pressured, so we condense our pitches into a few punchy tweet-length sentences in the hope of capturing their interest. It’s easy not to play the long game, but building a really robust story with multiple facets is always going to be PR gold.

For brands, innovation is all about meeting consumer demand, capturing shoppers’ imagination and demonstrating thought leadership. Sometimes, a radical new innovation launches and dazzles the consumers; other times, weird and wacky line extensions are more inclined to sparkle on Instagram feeds.

Either way it’s a win for the brand, as they grow sales and shopper interest with each new product. Often these new innovations provide valuable content for the media, however, without working these into a bigger story anything beyond product placement is unlikely.

As W’s Sean Allen-Moy said last month: “You’re going to have to work hard and smart to get your new flavour of peanut butter some broadcast coverage.” After all, what’s so exciting about announcing a line extension or that you’ve created a bigger pack?

The power of winning an industry award

One of the best ways to turn innovation into a story – and grab the associated coverage – is winning an award. Many product awards secure their own PR coverage, plus it gives you a conversation piece to promote across your own channels and impress influencers.

Also, when your award is backed by the votes of over 10,000 people – like Product of the Year – focusing exclusively on the most innovative products on the market, then you’ve got a story you can sell.

On top of this, brands that win awards are more likely than not to see uplift in sales. For example, our award winners report an average sales boost of 10-15%, with some seeing increases of as much as 135%. Now, which client doesn’t want to hear ideas that will directly impact sales?

Awards are often-underrated powerful PR and promotional tools. Not only do successes generate coverage for winners across the top consumer, trade, and digital titles, but it gives a brand the most important thing of all in PR – a story to tell.

Research from Nielsen illustrates that consumers are most likely to buy products recommended by a third party. Award wins, particularly those like Product of the Year where the results are based on a public vote, are the best form of third-party recommendation.

So, if you haven’t already, find an awards ceremony which suits your brand to reap the benefits of having an “award-winning” product.

To find out out more about the power of winning industry awards, download this Cision white paper on the subject by filling out the form below.

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