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August 21, 2019

5 tips from an Award-winning CEO

Brenda Jones Barwick, APR – President and CEO

“And the Silver Anvil winner is …” We all know the nearly breathless anxiety of hearing those words. One team will experience exuberance while the others will come away feeling proud of being finalists in the country’s most competitive and prestigious PR awards program.

As our industry evolves, new and interesting ways to reach audiences are arising and are going beyond traditional PR tactics. Entries today include owned-media strategies, as well as advertising and marketing initiatives.

Jones PR has won two Silver Anvil Awards throughout the years and has extensive knowledge when it comes to creating, building and submitting entries. Since PRSA has officially presented its 2019 Anvils, I’ve compiled five tips to remember before turning in your entries.

Read the entry closely
If you don’t have solid research and measurable results, the entry will not win an award. Judges reviewed several entries that had great planning and execution, but the entries lacked explanations of the research that had gone into the projects and how the success of the campaigns were measured.

Use bullet points
Since you have limited space to tell judges about your campaign, I recommend using bullet points. They help break up the text and make it easier for judges to read.

Have others proofread your entry
My number one tip is to have at least two sets of experienced eyes read your entry. Have someone who will edit specifically for grammar and punctuation while another edits for proper sentence structure and flow. You can never have too many eyes look over your entry. These awards are also often open for submission way before the deadline so get your entries in early if you have the capability to do so.

Don’t wait until the last minute
It’s obvious when entries are rushed, which leads to sloppy mistakes. If winning an award is important to your company or agency, then put the proper time and resources into it.

Become a Silver Anvil judge
The more awards that you judge, the better you become at writing entries. It’s easy to get bogged down in a campaign’s details, but writing an entry from a judge’s perspective helps you eliminate unnecessary information. It’s also a great opportunity to see what other PR professionals are doing for their clients. You can learn from their successes and bring best practices back to your own clients. Being a Silver Anvil judge is a great learning and networking experience all the way around.

The icon of the public relations profession, the Silver Anvil Awards recognizes the best public relations programs of the year and the highest standard of performance in the profession. Commonly referred to as “the Oscars of the public relations profession,” the Silver Anvils culminate in a prestigious awards show each spring in the heart of Manhattan.

The deadline for the 2020 Silver Anvil Awards will be Feb. 2020, but it’s never too early to put these tips into practice. For a deeper dive into Silver Anvil Awards, please visit PRSA.


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