It’s awards season! Sort of...

Across South Africa, marketing agencies are waiting with bated breath to hear who the nominees are for the different competitions.

Many brands submit their work to be judged by a panel of experts who know what it takes to achieve success. During award ceremonies, creative and successful campaigns are celebrated and the public gets to hear who the nominees, winners and honourable mentions are.

In this way, these events also act as a form of marketing; firstly, because sponsors are promoted, and secondly, because various brands are celebrated for their achievements.

Although each award ceremony and its respective categories have different aims and objectives, there are a few key areas where these events create value within an industry. Let's take a walk down the virtual red carpet to look at the value of award ceremonies:

Award ceremonies shift marketers’ focus to achieve better results

Executing a campaign that’s going to meet the goals of your brand’s marketing strategy can be stressful — you may even start to feel like a writer staring at a blank page. The task itself might not be daunting, but the worries of the result definitely are.

So, when the focus of an entry is shifted away from the success of a campaign and towards the creativity of marketing teams, it leads to better results.

This means that, year on year, participants are pushing the limits of their own capabilities and creativity, as well as showcasing what the industry is able to achieve. In this way, marketing teams are rising to new heights and innovating memorable outcomes.

Award ceremonies boost marketing for an agency

Brand awareness is particularly important in these times. There are many challenges that agencies are facing due to the pandemic, and the marketing industry is feeling this in multiple ways.

Marketers are finding that they need to juggle fluctuating budgets as well as ever-changing campaign strategies. But, by participating in award ceremonies, sponsors and entrants create awareness about their work and agencies, while contributing to the growth and innovation in the industry.

Even though these events are now mostly virtual, they still form part of a brand's digital strategy — and determining the reach of their audiences is so much easier to measure! Why? Because you can see who joins the virtual event and how many people attend. The beauty of the virtual event is that attendees are no longer limited by geographical constraints or limited tickets. Can it get any better? Yes, yes it can!

Entrants who win in their respective categories get an extra marketing boost through these kinds of awards. This is because people want to work with winners. And, whether you are the winner or not, celebrating during these events makes everyone — even people outside of marketing — see the industry in a positive light. This is an added bonus.

SA’s creativity is highlighted through these events

SA is a unique country filled with many cultures, languages and people. It’s no surprise then that these influences are echoed in our local brand’s work and campaign strategies — after all, they are created by South Africans, for South Africans.

Award ceremonies are the ideal platform to showcase the richness of SA creativity and reward campaigns that deliver measurable results for these equally unique and local brands. Thus, it is both the local creative influences and out-of-the-box thinking that is celebrated during these events

Because of the way these awards are evaluated, brands and agencies can also compare themselves to their peers in the local market, meaning that they continually raise the bar on their own work, as well as create new benchmarks throughout the industry.

For example, if Brand A wins within a category such as the Best Social Media Marketing Award for its campaign that was created by Agency X, competitors can pay attention to why and how the brand achieved its success.

Those who also entered in the same category can measure themselves against the winners to assess where they can improve in the future or where they are on par.

Do you also think that award ceremonies have a positive influence on the marketing industry as a whole? Tell us your thoughts in the comments below.

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Now that you know why award ceremonies are important, check out The value of awards and sponsorships in marketing.
*Image courtesy of Canva