The Drum Awards for PR recognize excellence in the public relations and communications industry. Guiding the successful communications of companies, governments and organizations is a vital role of the media industry. Here, the judges of this year's awards share what they look for in a winning entry, and their thoughts on the importance of awards altogether.
If you would like to enter The Drum Awards for PR in 2021, you can still do so by applying for an extension here. You can also check out last year's winners for inspiration on the website.
The Sway Effect
The Sway Effect is a network of independent marketing and communications agencies. Under Jennifer’s leadership, it focuses on “swaying” opinion and influencing outcomes on behalf of clients while putting diversity, equity and inclusion at the center of everything. The agency was recently names PRovoke’s 2021 North American New Agency of the Year.
I am excited to be selected again to judge the PR awards. I love this time of year when we can take a moment to review and learn from some of the best work happening across our industry.”
founder and director
Charlotte has 20 years’ experience working alongside brands and agencies, from start-ups to global networks, creating strategies and hands-on executions that make businesses successful. She’s also Founding Partner of 40 Over Forty, an initiative tackling ageism in the advertising, media and marketing industry as well as a mentor and ambassador for SheSays 'Who’s Your Momma’.
I’m always intrigued to see what work is being done in our industry and I especially like understanding the strategy and thinking behind campaigns. Great work deserves to be recognised and celebrated! I’m hoping to see work that has delivered on the brief, that showcases great thinking and execution and that gets real results for the investment.
senior vice president, head of corporate communications & PR
In his current role, Ashok leads the communications strategy and execution across Audacy’s entire portfolio of assets. He has held leadership positions in corporate communications at media, marketing and entertainment companies including Publicis Media, NBCUniversal, Viacom, Product(RED) and others. Ashok also holds board positions at the India Center, which aims to strengthen the connection between India and the United States through the arts and public affairs, and the 4As Foundation, which endeavors to increase diversity within the advertising, media and marketing industries.
I’m honored to be on this jury. There’s never been a more exciting time to be a communications professional, and I look forward to the opportunity to evaluate the work of my colleagues across the globe and across so many different industries.”
communications and external relations director
With a background in broadcast, agency and in-house roles, Tamara has extensive communications experience and is currently Group Director of Communications and External Relations at Virgin, working across global communications for the Virgin Group and the Branson family. Prior to joining Virgin, Tamara worked as a researcher, presenter and director for ITV1 West Country. She then worked for Nike and MTV1 on the launch of their national #justaddmoves campaign.
Last year I was the chair of these awards, it was an exhilarating, challenging and inspirational day – so many brilliant entries to assess with some very heated debates along the way. Choosing the winners was a tough job! This year I’m hoping for more the same.
head of consumer communications, Australia
Joe Satari is an internationally award-winning consumer comms PR professional. He spent a decade in London’s agency scene specialising in consumer lifestyle and consumer technology. He was a member of the launch team at the award-winning Talker Tailor Trouble Maker, which is one of London’s fastest growing agencies. For the last three years he has led the Deliveroo consumer comms function in the UK and more recently Australia. He is passionate about delivering meaningful PR campaigns that drive extensive media coverage, consumer awareness and love for the Deliveroo brand.
Having attended The Drum Awards since the beginning of my career, and won many myself, the opportunity to be a judge presents a chance to be inspired by the amazing output from one of the world’s top PR hubs. I'm looking for campaigns that respond to a brief in the most effective way. This doesn't necessarily mean stories that generated tonnes of coverage - although that is impressive - a winning campaign should stop you in your tracks and engender the a strong reaction.
brand communications director
At bespoke ethically sourced fine jewellery brand Vashi, Camilla oversees all PR, brand marketing and media, Advocacy (from customers to employees to VIPs and influencers), social media and events. Camilla has also held global PR, advocacy and event roles at Charlotte Tilbury, Benefit Cosmetics and Halpern PR (part of The&Partnership, part of WPP).
One of the best parts of my career is being inspired by the incredible talent around me - both those with whom I work every day, but also those in the wider industry whom I admire from afar. Judging The Drum Awards for PR is always a highlight - the entries never cease to amaze me and make me proud to work in the industry. I am always looking for a campaign that approaches the brief in an unusual way, that leaves you with an element of surprise. It’s often the business challenges solved with little money that are the most impressive!
The North Face
PR manager, EMEA
As PR Manager for The North Face, EMEA, Jack looks after everything PR and Influencers for the brand in Europe. Over the past two years his focus has been on developing the influencer programme, ‘The Explorer Team’ and using that programme to support other areas of the business, from e-comm to social and everything in between.
For the opportunity to take a moment away my own world of work and appreciate the brilliant work of others and hopefully be inspired by it. Awards are a way of recognising hard work, talent and commitment that can sometimes be forgotten too quickly amongst the push for the ‘next campaign’. I am looking for work that has an impact not only on brands, but consumers - what it changed, and how did it did it.
Kyle runs the NYC office of Codeword (formerly Knock Twice), a PR and advertising agency specializing in content and messaging strategy. His clients range from early-round tech startups to some of the biggest, most visible companies in the world, including YouTube, Google, Qualcomm, IBM, Accenture, Netflix.
People have been talking about "the changing media landscape" since we first started drawing pictures on the walls of our caves. But the past 18 months has really, legitimately, this-is-not-hype-at-all been a revolution in how people communicate, stay connected, shop, interact with media, and experience the brands they love. So I think this will be a fascinating awards season, and I'll be looking for brands and agencies that really took advantage of the moment, threw out the established playbooks, and pushed the industry forward.
head of communications
Dot joined Vevo in 2015 as communications manager out of the London office, serving as the international PR lead for a series of key initiatives around Vevo’s original programming and events, raising Vevo’s brand awareness throughout the UK and Europe. In 2017, Dot moved to Vevo’s San Francisco office to lead communications for the product, sales and research departments, before taking on her current role. Prior to Vevo, Dot was head of campaigns and communications for the industry body, UK Music, representing the collective interests of the UK music industry. She was one of the creators of the Music Week Women in Music Awards, the first awards program to recognize the top women artists and leaders within the UK music industry.
Effective storytelling is make-or-break for a brand, so I am excited at the opportunity to review the best of PR from this last year. While I am analyzing and judging, I hope to also learn from and be inspired by these entries. I’ll be looking at how campaigns combine creativity, and research and data, to create results - and ultimately drive their brand or initiative forward.
Elvove Associates LLC
Roy is the former executive vice president and director of worldwide communications for BBDO. Roy served in this role for 20 years, leaving at the end of 2019 to set up his own communications consultancy, Elvove Associates LLC. Roy is a past co-chairman of the 4As Communications Committee and one of the original recipients of the Advertising Council’s GD Crain Award for outstanding contributions to public service.
The contributions of communications practitioners have never been more important or meaningful to a client’s business. Yet it’s never been more difficult to achieve, or required more skill and dexterity. I am in awe and proud to be a cheerleader for the PR industry.
creative partner and chief executive officer
Named by Adweek in 2011 as one of the world’s top 10 creative minds in digital, Nick Bailey has held leadership positions as ECD of AKQA Amsterdam, CEO and CCO of Isobar London and Creative Director at Digitas LBi. Along the way he’s picked up over 100 international awards and sat on juries for the Cannes Lions’ inaugural Glass Lion, D&AD, eurobest and the One Show.
It’s a slog sometimes in this industry, putting heart and soul into your work and then dashing to the next thing. Being a judge is a great way to give back - so that our peers know their work is appreciated! Also, for selfish reasons, it’s a great way to get inspired by all the great work. Creativity is the world’s only inexhaustible resource, but to keep delivering it must be nurtured. That’s what these processes are all about. I am looking for freshness above all, and a feeling that the team enjoyed themselves. It’s important to remember this industry is supposed to be rewarding.
managing director, Scotland
Natalie is a leader in strategic communications with 18 years’ consultancy experience. She delivers executive counsel and integrated communications campaigns for domestic and international clients, with particular expertise in the cleantech, energy, fisheries, sustainable business and tourism sectors. Natalie is passionate about developing people and is particularly focused on equality in the workplace. She is the chair of the the Scottish Apprenticeship Advisory Board’s Gender Commission, and was chair of the Public Relations and Communications Association (PRCA) from 2016 until 2019. She was named a PRCA Fellow in 2020.
Judging campaigns my peers in the industry have given their all to create and deliver is a true privilege, this year more than ever, when submissions will tell the tale of unbelievable strength and ability through adversity. I’m looking for entries that root creativity in strategy to deliver true impact – be it on business, behaviour or sentiment.