2015 Digital PR Awards: Digital Communicator

Winner: John McInerney, Ruder Finn

As SVP of Consumer Marketing for Ruder Finn, John McInerney has spearheaded a number of integrated digital and social campaigns for leading brands across industries. For example, he led an omnichannel social campaign for The Home Depot, focused on rallying millennials around DIY and home improvement by engaging the brand in emerging platforms and shifting its social presence and voice.

And, by providing value through content that was on-brand while embracing cultural relevance and creating inherently social activations throughout the key seasonal portions of the year, McInerney and his team amplified a new target audience: the next generation of Home Depot customers.

He also led the development of social activations and campaigns that ranged from a partnership with Mashable, blogger conference activations, an event series, Vine influencer partnerships, Instagram challenges, a Jimmy Kimmel TV spot integration, app partnerships, and a video series and homepage takeover with The Onion, among other tactics. The campaign resulted in 1 billion impressions and 1.3 million social engagements – illustrating significant brand engagement with a growing key audience.

In working with Showtime Sports (SHOSports), McInerney managed the brand’s first-ever effort to live broadcast on social channels – including the launch of the brand’s Vine channel – to explore new and innovative ways to connect with both die-hard and casual boxing fans. Utilizing the behind-the-scenes footage from the Emmy-award winning real-time documentary series "All Access," McInerney and his team created social-ready, premium video content to post on SHOSports Vine and Instagram accounts, giving followers a peak into the world of boxing that they might not normally have access to.

The team also posted real-time content from Las Vegas in the week before the fight, with exclusive footage of the press conference, weigh-in and other fan-focused pre-fight events. These efforts led to stellar results for SHOSports with 178 million total impressions, 1.6 million total engagements and 33 percent overall community growth.

Honorable Mentions:

•             Victoria Bowness, Klick Communications

•             Bernhard Mors, MasterCard