2010 Platinum PR Awards: On a Shoestring Campaign

Winner: Marketing 24/7 Inc. – “Business Makeover Birmingham”

Ruwena Healy, president of Marketing 24/7, joined with Dent, Baker & Co. and Corsini Consulting Group to launch a business makeover contest in 2009 that would provide $30,000 worth of professional services over a six-month period to the winning company. Most of the PR and marketing efforts were pro bono, but the payback was considerable, and not just for the winner of the contest. The project partners were associated with all media coverage of the contest, resulting in higher profiles in the business community and new inquiries from potential clients.
Business Makeover Birmingham’s site attracted 1,730 unique visitors over seven months, and 15 articles were placed in various news outlets. And a final live event was attended by 120 businesspeople—which was maximum capacity. The ultimate measure of success: The 2010 contest is already well under way.
Honorable Mentions:
Adfero Group - SNM Annual Meeting Press Conference: Adfero and the Society of Nuclear Medicine drove attendance to SNM’s annual meeting press conference by taking advantage of the recent Chalk River nuclear facility shutdown. Adfero positioned SNM as a source of insight as the media tried to learn more about the worldwide medical isotope shortage.
American Airlines - “Black History in Aviation”: American Airlines used traditional media outreach and its existing corporate social network vehicles to affordably—and respectfully—observe Black History Month and position American as a company interested in attracting minority students to aviation careers.
GolinHarris - McDonald's Richmond Commuter Program - McCafé Frappé Launch: GolinHarris created a partnership with the primary bus system in Richmond, Va., to provide commuters with cards for free bus rides and free Frappés as part of the product’s launch.
Jumpstart - “Jumpstart’s Read for the Record 2009”: Jumpstart pursued low-cost strategies such as social networking and pro bono advertising placement to support its campaign to ensure that preschool children in low-income communities are ready for school.
Molina Healthcare Inc - Yo-Yo Break the Record. Break the Cycle: Molina created buzz about its entry into the managed care market in Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties in Florida by using its surplus of yo-yos from a previous rebranding project. The toys were thematically tied to yo-yo dieting use to break the Guinness World Record for the number of individuals yo-yo’ing simultaneously.
Southwest Airlines Company – WOW! Sale: With an advertising budget of zero, Southwest turned to Twitter, Facebook and its Nuts About Southwest blog promote a 36-hour offering of one-way fares that were as low as $25.

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