More tips for submitting to Best in Maryland

We have more tips from past winners on how to make sure you take home that award.

#5: Research and evaluation determine the winner.

“All creative being equal, the research and evaluation portions of an award entry determine the winner.” Claudia Ciolfi, Chesapeake Employers Insurance

#6: Hold your entry to the same standards as your other communications products.

“The Cystic Fibrosis Foundation’s Communications Department is laser focused on producing high-quality products in support of the CF community. Naturally, when we created our PRSA BIM Blog submission, we held it to the same high standard as any other communications product. We carefully reviewed application criteria and provided thoughtful answers, which were backed up by data. For those considering applying for this year’s PRSA BIM award(s), if you do one thing, remember that quality always matters, so create a best in class submission – one that answers all questions precisely and comprehensively, demonstrates creativity, and shows that you listened well to your audience.” Amanda Sobanet, Cystic Fibrosis Foundation

#7: Don’t disqualify yourself before you even try.

“I think the judges understand every project is unique and has limitations, often in terms of budget and/or client flexibility. I would urge those thinking about entering BIM not to overly worry about these things and not to disqualify themselves before they have even tried. We were very excited to win and it meant a lot.” Adam Shapiro, ASPR

#8: Follow directions!

“It sounds so simple, but follow the directions in the call for entries. You don’t want your entry to be disqualified for a reason not at all related to your work. Make sure you include all of the required components, and submit it exactly as it’s requested. It’s worth it to spend the time putting together a thoughtful, complete entry.” Kelsey Pospisil O’Planick, News Generation, Inc.

Click here for tips #1-4

Click here to get started …

Call for Nominations for Professional Awards is Open!

The Best in Maryland Awards program is not just about the call for entries. The Professional Awards are a major part of the program, honoring new and seasoned PR pros for their individual contributions and successes. You can be part of this by submitting a nomination in one or more of the following categories …

Lifetime Achievement – PRSA Maryland’s top award recognizes long-time PR pros who have exhibited extraordinary achievements and demonstrated outstanding leadership in the field. Past LT winners include Louise Lake Hayman, APR, Fellow PRSA; Ralph Crosby; Bonnie K. Heneson; Helen Szablya; Jody Aud, and more. Help us continue this tradition by submitting your choice for this top honor.

PR Team Award – We all know that most great PR programs are a team effort. This is a chance to honor your high-performing communications team for its outstanding support of your clients’ and your organization’s communications objectives. New last year, it was a tough competition with Chesapeake Employers’ Insurance Company taking home the honor. Nominate your team and be the second to receive this award.

Rising Star (formerly New Professional of the Year) – This award is like a jump start to those just starting out in PR or communications by honoring their dedication and commitment to being the best. This year, we’ve extended the requirement from three or fewer years to five or fewer years, which should make it even more competitive. This category heats up so don’t delay.

Educator of the Year – Educators are an integral part of our industry building strong public relations/communications programs and inspiring PR pros of tomorrow. This award is for those teachers/professors who go above and beyond that task. Past recipients include educators from Loyola University Maryland, Towson University and Stevenson University. There are many more great programs out there; nominate your favorite teacher.

Partner of Distinction – Let’s not forget another important team member – our vendors. This award honors those organizations which through their services have shown overwhelming support of a public relations/communications program or the profession as a whole. They go above and beyond to make your program a success. Let us know who they are by submitting a nomination.

And our newest award named in honor of past Chapter president and long-time PRSA member …

Paul E. Welsh Award – We can’t forget our colleagues that are mid-career stars. This award honors PR pros who are successful in the field with at least 10 years’ experience. Paul E Welsh is credited with creating our state’s nickname, “America in Miniature.” What better way to honor the past and the present.

Click here for more information and nomination forms!

 


Sponsorship Opportunities … 

Want to show your support of these awards while getting in front of the Maryland PR community?  Become a PROFESSIONAL AWARDS HOST. Not only will you be featured on the PRSA Maryland Web site and in 2017 BIM magazine (new this year), you’ll also present the awards during the 2017 Best in Maryland Gala on December 6 at the Royal Sonesta Harbor Court.

Not interested in being an awards host? We also plenty of other sponsorship and advertising opportunities. Click here for a full list.

Best in Maryland Sponsors to date …

 

DESIGN

 

PHOTOGRAPHY

Tips for Submitting to Best in Maryland

Are you starting to think about what to submit to this year’s Best in Maryland awards competition? Or have you started working on your entries? Either way, here are a few tips from past winners on how to make sure you take home that award …

#1: Start early!

“The biggest piece of advice we can give is to start early. You may be surprised by the amount of time it takes to craft a solid, compelling entry – it isn’t something you want to rush!” Kendall Blair, Vitamin

#2: Find your “best fit.”

“Carefully review all of the award categories to determine what would be a “best fit” for any nomination you might be planning to submit. Also, having previously served as an award judge, I recommend that nominations be as concise as possible; having clearly stated measurable objectives and results.” Dan Dunne, Erickson Living.

#3: Have a sound strategy and measure!

“One piece of advice for someone entering this year’s BIM awards is to focus on 2 things: sound strategy and measurement early and often.  The digital landscape allows us to have access to more data than we know how to handle – showing that you used some type of data insight to develop your campaign will position you well. And get creative with measurement. The number of free tools at your disposal allows us to measure PR impact better than ever before, and even more creatively than ever with the use of free infographic tools and dashboards.” Caitlin Wolf, Planit.

#4: Use this as a PR exercise.

“Have a good product. Don’t enter because you want to win an award. Enter because it is a PR exercise. You get recognition from an established group and brand exposure. Our team was very proud of our win – and our teamwork.” Brooks Paternotte, Irvine Nature Center

Read tips #5-8 here.

Click here to get started …

2017 Best in Maryland Call for Entries is here!

What makes a winner “Best in Maryland”?

 

Best (adj): of the most excellent or desirable type or quality.

Best in Maryland winner (noun): a superior PR professional that nailed it!

Does this sound like you? Then you’ll be happy to hear that the 2017 Best in Maryland Call for Entries is now open!

The Best in Maryland awards celebrates the diverse and unique work in our area. PR professionals who have creatively navigated a communications challenge with precision and ingenuity are encouraged to enter any number of categories including:

  • Community Relations
  • Crisis Communications
  • Integrated Communications
  • Pro Bono
  • Public Service
  • Social Media
  • And so, so much more!

Click here for more information!

Who will be the “Best in Maryland?” That’s for the judges – the members of PRSA Central California Chapter – to decide. Let’s show them what the Best in Maryland can do.

We are also accepting nominations for our Professional Awards! Categories include …

  • Lifetime Achievement
  • Rising Star
  • PR Team Award
  • Educator of the Year
  • Partner of Distinction

And our newest award for PR pros with a minimum of 10 years experience …

  • Paul E. Welsh (NEW)

Nominate someone today! Click here for more information.

And be sure to mark your calendar for December 6 and join us for the party of the year – Best in Maryland Awards Gala. This year, we’re headed to the Royal Sonesta Harbor Court in Baltimore.

Early bird prices end on August 29th. Final deadline is September 12th

A Special Thanks to our Sponsors…

Design – Devaney & Associates

Photography – Coyle Studios

 

Lisa Brusio Coster to chair 2017 Best in Maryland

 

“Research has shown that people who volunteer often live longer.”
– Allen Klein (Am. author and humorist).

“Fact or alternate fact, join me as a Best in Maryland volunteer to find out! The team is forming now.” – Lisa Brusio Coster

Lisa Brusio Coster

Lisa Brusio Coster

We’re excited to announce that Lisa Brusio Coster, president of Coster Communications, Ltd. is our 2017 Best in Maryland (BIM) chair.

Lisa is an experienced PR pro, event planner and a past BIM award winner and Chesapeake Conference co-chair. (Meet her!)

And she’s ready to talk about the committee and volunteer opportunities!

PRSA Maryland’s annual awards program, BEST IN MARYLAND, is the creative work of a team of PR professionals. The BIM Committee and volunteers are tasked with creating a celebration of the public relations profession through a program that recognizes both the work of and the individuals behind that work.This is your opportunity to be part of the creative team behind the program.

Mugging it up at #BIM16

Mugging it up at #BIM16

Who Can Join the Team?

Any PR pro who is interested in helping create the chapter’s signature program. Skills needed vary with your role, and we have roles for all skills. Looking to build skills in event planning or awards program? This is a great spot. Want to get an inside look at great PR programs and tools? Judging provides that.

Simply click here to learn more.

News Generation and American Bankers Association Honored at PRSA Maryland’s Best In Maryland Awards Gala

 

Here’s a peek into News Generation, Inc.‘s winning campaign in Media Relations – Assoc/Nonprofit/Govt category: Educating and Empowering Americans with Financial Literacy. 

Finances. It is a frequent, sometimes difficult, but necessary topic of conversation between spouses, parents and children, and adults and their parents. The American Bankers Association (ABA) works to make this necessary conversation and subsequent action and preparedness as seamless and easy to understand as possible. Representing banks across the United States, the ABA works to educate, inform and empower people to take control of their finances, or those of family members in their care. To leverage the newsworthy and timely resources, tools and information it offers, ABA engaged a media strategy heavily focused on earned radio outreach. ABA partnered with News Generation, a broadcast media relations firm based in Bethesda, to develop, pitch and implement an effective media relations outreach campaign.

Together they launched a cohesive campaign of six messages, and six resulting radio media tours, working toward the goal of educating the public on the role hometown banks play in helping economic growth and empowering Americans with financial literacy. Sixty radio interviews were secured, with highlights including interviews that aired nationally on NBC News Radio (formerly 24/7 News Source at the time), Bloomberg Network, Compass Media Networks, and American Urban Radio Network. As well as airings on statewide or metro-area interviews with 16 different networks, and airings on the top news and top news-talk stations in Atlanta, Detroit, San Antonio, Fargo-Valley City, and Rapid City, as ranked by Nielsen.

The radio media tours reached a total of 74,754,470 listeners, almost 25 percent above the initial goal set out by the collaborating teams. The campaign delivered an incredible cost per point (CPP) of $.00037, or less than four one-hundredths of one penny, to reach each listener. The American Bankers Association saw engagement in the areas the radio media tours focused on, largely contributing to the advancement and awareness of the association, its focus and multi-faceted expertise.

According to Nielsen, the leading company on global information and media measurement, 93 percent of people 12 years of age and older listen to the radio each week. In addition, radio interviews allow reporters to engage the spokesperson, seeking clarity from experts and steering content towards their anticipated audience needs.

News Generation compiled the most relevant and newsworthy information into the media pitch. The pitching team extensively researched the most appropriate national and statewide networks, as ranked by Nielsen, as well as media markets in which the most relevant coverage would best represent its largest news or news-talk station. News Generation personally pitched each reporter, host and producer via telephone and email to secure the most relevant interviews based on top listenership and market rank. This all earned-media strategic approach focused on securing quality interviews with highly-ranked networks and stations to maximize on-air time for ABA.


News Generation, Inc. received an Award of Excellence for its work with ABA. Click here for a list of all 2016 Best in Maryland winners.

Public Relations Society of America Maryland Chapter Announces 2016 “Best in Maryland” Award Winners

 

A. Bright Idea Wins Best in Show Award

 
Communications excellence and the effective practice of public relations took center stage at the 2016 Best in Maryland Awards gala recently hosted by PRSA Maryland at the Belvedere Hotel. Top honors this year went to A. Bright Idea, LLC, advertising and public relations agency headquartered in Bel Air, Md., for its integrated communications program – “U.S. Army National Guard Action Events” – and, to the communications department of Chesapeake Employers’ Insurance Company, which won PR Team of the Year award.

Several individual public relations practitioners also received top honors: Louise Lake Hayman received the Lifetime Achievement Award; Loyola University’s Veronica Gunnerson was recognized as Educator of the Year; and, AECOM’s Lauren Michelotti was honored as PRSA Maryland’s New Professional of the Year.

The awards were presented at the 2016 Best in Maryland Awards gala, which was held at The Belvedere Hotel on Thursday, December 8, 2016. This year’s event emcee was President and CEO of Clapp Communications Barb Clapp and National Geographic Magazine Editor-in-Chief Susan Goldberg was the event’s keynote speaker.

In addition to presenting awards across multiple categories for communications and public relations excellence to more than two dozen area businesses, nonprofits, associations, and government agencies, PRSA Maryland also recognized outgoing President Dan Dunne, APR, of Erickson Living, and welcomed incoming President Claudia Ciolfi, manager of public relations and strategic communications at Chesapeake Employers’ Insurance Company.

A complete list of honorees and award recipients can be found by clicking here.

A. Bright Idea wins Best in Show

A. Bright Idea wins Best in Show

Photo caption: Pictured left to right are: (A. Bright Idea representatives Leanne Eck, interactive designer, and Kevin Hess, communications events specialist, accept the Best in Show award from PRSA Maryland Chapter President Daniel Dunne, APR, Director of Communications, Erickson Living, at the association’s awards gala in Baltimore.

Photo courtesy of Harry Bosk PR & Photography

A Special Thanks to our #BIM16 Sponsors, VIPs & Volunteers

 

It’s hard to believe that after months of planning and some finger-crossing on behalf of the entrants/nominees, the Best in Maryland program came to a close last week … and what a close it was! Coupled with high quality entries and tough competition on the awards side, and a top-notch venue, an outstanding keynote, and some exciting surprises on the Gala side, this year’s awards program was a resounding success. A great finish to the Chapter’s 55th year. (Check out Jeff Davis’ recap of the Gala.)

Of course, none of this can happen without the support of our sponsors and volunteers so we would like to take a few minutes to once again thank you all:

To our #BIM16 sponsors, because none of this can happen without your contribution and support …

Clapp Communications
for helping us put on this great event

Vitamin
Premier sponsor and VIP
for your continuing support of the Chapter

Van Eperen
for creating our #BIM16 design

Harry Bosk PR & Photography
for giving us your time and expertise
(pictures coming soon!)

PCA | An RR Donnelley Company
for providing all our printing needs with a smile
(even those last-minute items)

Flowers & Fancies
for providing our wonderful centerpieces

Erickson Living
for sponsoring the keynote Susan Goldberg
(she was amazing!).

We also want to thank our VIPs – your support helped us afford those few extras that made the evening sparkle … A. Bright Idea, LLCBGEChesapeake Employers’ Insurance CompanyCrosby MarketingErickson LivingPlanit, and Lifetime Achievement Honoree Louise Lake Hayman, APR, Fellow PRSA.

To our #BIM16 volunteers for finding a way to balance our needs with your day jobs …

  • Dana Cohen, Clapp Communications
  • Lauren Moyer, Clapp Communications
  • Sarah Tuccitto, Clapp Communications
  • Timmy Ruppersberger, Clapp Communications
  • Daniel Dunne, APR, Erickson Living
  • Claudia Ciolfi, Chesapeake Employers’ Insurance Company
  • Amanda Nolan, The Associated
  • Nancy Sherman, The Caroline Center
  • Dani Baldassare, Erickson Living
  • Lisa Coster, Coster Communications, LTD
  • Blaine Dunford

See you all next year!