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The Drum PR Awards to be judged by professionals from L’Oreal, Unilever, Sony, Google & GSK


By Dani Gibson, Senior Writer

April 4, 2019 | 6 min read

L’Oreal, Diageo, Unilever, Sony, Google, GSK and Yo Sushi are some of the brands from which communication and marketing professionals are set to judge The Drum PR Awards as they launch for the first time.

PR judges

The Drum PR Awards to be judged by professionals from L’Oreal, Unilever, Sony, Google & GSK

In its inaugural year, the awards will scout for excellent examples of good practice, innovation and creativity but most importantly, we want to see the PR craft and thinking behind the work.

The scope of PR has grown significantly in the last few years, insists judge Nicky Wang, managing director and head of strategy at WE Red Bridge.

“Public relations for the first time, can truly be differentiated from media relations, which are activities specifically designed to engage with journalists,” Wang explained. “We now work in a far more complex media ecosystem, with more opportunities than ever before to communicate directly with our stakeholders through content marketing and community building. This brings PR even closer to the business. It allows us to be more holistic in our approach and be more creative in our delivery.”

The Drum PR Awards have been endorsed by the ‘The Awards Trust Mark Scheme’, accredited by The Independent Awards Standard Council. This validates that we are running a transparent, trustworthy and credible competition. These awards are open globally as you will see with our wide spread of judges to ensuring diversity of experience and opinion.

From this year’s submissions, member of the judging panel Rema Gouyez-Benalla, head of digital content and engagement at L'Oreal UK is hoping to see examples where communications have integrated into wider marketing plans to drive brand or product awareness as well as brand love.

“Social engagement is a real driving force behind PR right now. Where we were once limited with understanding the impact of our campaigns, we can now see, in real-time how the public perceive a new launch or campaign.

“These awards are a chance to showcase your PR efforts and more importantly – drive best practices for the industry as a whole.”

Wang added: “Having worked very closely with c-suite clients around the world, it is absolutely crucial that the work generates tangible results at the end of the day, being it business performance, brand perception, or consumer behavioural change.”

PR can be a misunderstood discipline, and these awards will remind the world at large of the importance PR plays in helping drive business success. Categories include: Diversity and Inclusion Company of the Year, PR and Communications Agency of the Year, PR and Communications In-house Team of the Year, Rising Star, Finance and Professional Services, Not for Profit, Leisure and Travel, FMCG, Reputation Management and Crisis PR, Stunt or Promotional Activation, Digital, Influencer Relations, Corporate Social Responsibility and more.

Charmaine Huet, marketing and communications, director, Southeast Asia, Discovery Networks Asia Pacific is keen to see how PR professionals are effectively conveying their message today, in a highly competitive space where everyone is clamouring not just for visibility but also engagement.

She said: “I would be looking for entries that leap out at me with a story that is cleverly told – whether in words, images, sounds or even the absence of all these – to achieve its desired purpose.”

What are you waiting for? Download your entry pack and be in with a chance to win at the inaugural The Drum PR Awards. Make sure you submit your entries before Thursday 9 May.

The judging panel includes: Lani Lavin, head of sustainable business and communications, Unilever; Dr Colin D'Silva, head of Asia Pacific, communications and Government affairs, GSK; Michelle Lavipour, global head of marketing and diversity communications, Diageo; Rema Gouyez-Benalla, head of digital content and engagement, L'Oreal UK; Karen Yew, head of corporate marketing and communications, Mediacorp; Paul Fabretti, director of communications, Microsoft; Victoria Needs, director of international marketing, Sony Music Entertainment; Ken Hein, chief communications officer US, Dentsu Aegis Network; Grant Mitchell, corporate communications manager, Verizon Media; Paul Mallon, head of major brand activations, Paddy Power; Shakira Payne, communications and sustainability manager, Sonos; Suzanne Blackburn, global communications and public affairs, Google; Anna Dalziel, marketing director, Momentum Worldwide; Phil Wade, chief marketing officer, Jetstar Airways; Susie Penner, senior director of corporate communications, Go Daddy; Laura Sutherland, founder and director, Aura PR; Stephen Waddington, managing director, Metia; Jenny Chan, vice president, head of public affairs, Asia, WeWork; James Herring, managing director, Taylor Herring Ltd; Su Min Sng, head of communications, Grab; Ross Matthews, chief marketing officer, Ice Lolly; Arline Adeva, assistant vice president for brand communications, PR and digital marketing, Jollibee; Nicky Wang, managing director and head of strategy, WE Red Bridge; Nancy Maffucci, senior communications planner, Federal Reserve Bank of New York; Karen Tan, senior director, Ministry of Communications and Information; Charmaine Huet, marketing and communications director, Southeast Asia, Discovery Networks Asia Pacific; Luisa Fernandez, marketing director, YO! Sushi; Eric Pooley, senior vice president, Environmental Defense Fund, Gemma Cracknell, marketing director, Merlin Entertainments, Ruth Warder, general manager, Edelman and Ellie Graham, senior publicity director, Think Jam.

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