By Adam Wakefield and Michelle Strydom

Prior to the judges breaking off into eight clusters, Bridget von Holdt, convenor of the PRISM Awards since 1998, addressed those assembled to cover issues relating to award submissions, the working process, and any concerns posed by those judges present.

With that taken care of, the judges went to their assigned clusters to debate among themselves the awards assigned to them.

The judges had adjudicated all the submissions assigned to them in a set criteria prior to collaborating with their peers.
What does it take to win a coveted PRISM Award
  • The quality of the award submissions were judged on grammar, spelling, word count and content; 
  • The entry must have been read, edited and signed off by the relevant senior manager;
  • Engaging with and understanding target audiences;
  • Having references from a variety of sources added value to the entry.  The quality of those references was imperative;
  • The individual entries are where judges looked for the “wow” factor and story-telling.  Those entrants who did more than expected of them were recognised;
  • It was one thing to claim a particular campaign success, however without the adequate measurement figures, such a claim lost credibility;
  • Identification of return of investment (ROI) was considered important;
  • Entries that went beyond the prescribed length of 1300 words, including the opening statement, were heavily penalised;
  • Entries were prone to too much duplication and still depended on many traditional channels even though social media was available; and
  • An additional 10 points was allocated for the intangible “magic” in the Campaigns of the Year categories.

The rising of these themes above the crowd, and the energetic debate among the judges in the different clusters, emphasised the PRISM Award’s commitment to excellence.

The awards will take place on Sunday, 17 April, at the Indaba Hotel in Johannesburg.

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