I’ve been hesitant to editorialize about Barack Obama receiving the Nobel peace prize, as the debate seems so obvious. Those on the right say he doesn’t deserve it, those in the center left are jubilant and those on the far left are somewhere in the center of this debate. But given that it is awards season here at PR News — with our Platinum PR, Nonprofit PR and PR People Awards being bestowed over the next few months — I thought I’d tie the Nobel to these lesser known awards. (That’s a first in the annals of PR – Nobel peace prize and Platinum PR Awards sharing the same sentence). The distinguished judges of our awards programs evaluate entrants on strategy, tactics and results: tangible results often with lots of numbers and statistics to back up why an entry should win a Platinum award, or a Nonprofit PR award. Preceding the actual results and weighing more heavily with the judges is the actual vision of the campaign or initiative: was it smart, did it move the needle, did it make a positive change? We can see through the entry write-ups in which the actual goal nicely matched the results (ie 120 million media impressions was the campaign goal — and the results? 120 million media impressions!). The PR News awards look for that somewhat intangible quality that separates a good initiative from a great one. There’s a plethora of good ideas and good results in the marketplace — just as there are good leaders and good policies. As with the Nobel and other awards programs, we need to benchmark the best, the boldest and the smartest — even if the campaign isn’t over yet.
— Diane Schwartz