2011 Platinum PR Awards: Online Communications

Winner: NEI and Burson-Marsteller – Digital Crisis Management for U.S. Nuclear Industry during Japan Crisis

In the immediate aftermath of the devastating March 2011 earthquake in Japan, American public opinion shifted from 57% in support of nuclear energy to seven out of every 10 Americans being concerned about the chance of a nuclear disaster in the U.S. It was a crisis of confidence that needed to be addressed quickly. NEI, in partnership with Burson-Marsteller, launched the @NEIupdates Twitter account, the “NEI Nuclear Notes” blog and developed video content within a branded YouTube channel to ensure that NEI would position itself as a credible source on nuclear safety and information.

The Twitter account essentially became NEI's newsroom as journalists followed the account and reported on information distributed on that social media channel. Furthermore, the "NEI Nuclear Notes" blog received over 74,000 unique visitors in March 2011. NEI received much praise for being a credible source and shifting public opinion as evidenced by an April poll that revealed that 58% of Americans believed U.S. nuclear plants were safe—SP

Fast Fact: NEI's Twitter posts were re-tweeted in total of over 1,200 times.

Honorable Mentions:

Chrysler Group LLC – Dodge Rock ’n Roll Half-Marathon: To launch the 2011 Dodge Durango, Chrysler live-tweeted and posted videos (viewed over 62,000 times) during a 700+ mile road trip from Chrysler Headquarters all the way to Virginia Beach, where the Durango was the pace car for Dodge's Rock 'n Roll Half-Marathon.

Denison University – TheDEN: TheDEN uses Web 2.0 technologies, including descriptive tagging and social networking, to drive engagement among stakeholders. Entirely run by university staff, students and freelance hires, the site was on pace to hit 300,000 views in its first year.

O’Malley Hansen Communications – Sara Lee Deli: Solving the Mama Saga: After bringing back the “Saga Moms,” OHC created videos for Sara Lee’s branded Metacafe channel in which the moms discussed ways to solve common lunchtime issues. Facebook was also used to host live chats with each expert and hold contests where moms could submit their biggest lunchtime challenges to be solved by the experts.

Siemens Industry Inc. – Plantville, a Siemens initiative: Siemens created a free, interactive online game, Plantville, that simulates a plant manager’s experience. Five weeks after the game’s launch, Plantville had 9,400 players and had made 46 million ad impressions on the social media site.

U.S. Census Bureau – 2010census.gov: The official Web site for the 2010 Census averaged 2.3 million page views per week, topping out at 23 million in the first week of April 2010. To ensure greater accessibility, the Census Bureau also provided a complete Spanish version of the Web site along with modules for 59 other languages.

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