CIPR PRide Awards: Scottish superstars

PRide Award winners in Scotland include Weber Shandwick and VisitScotland

Corporate Responsibility

Specsavers in Scotland supports VisionAid Overseas by Specsavers and Beattie Communications
In 2007, Specsavers stores throughout Scotland supported charity VisionAid Overseas by hosting the first ever dedicated fundraiser day.

Beattie and Specsavers’ in-house team were charged with raising money for the charity, raising awareness, and promoting the message that customers could recycle their old glasses to help those with poor vision in developing countries. An exclusive interview with Ken McDonald, store director and VisionAid Overseas volunteer, was set up with the Daily Record and press releases were sent to regional media. The campaign raised £76,000 for VisionAid Overseas and hundreds of pairs of glasses were collected. In total 44 press cuttings were generated.

Not For Profit

Whistling Ban by Tricker PR

Tricker had just £500 to promote the Scottish Traditional Boat Festival, an annual community event in Portsoy, north east Scotland. The team researched maritime superstitions and found whistling at sea was said to encourage bad weather. This led to the idea of banning all whistling in Portsoy in the run-up to the festival.

A press release was issued to all UK and Scottish media and was picked up by the Press Association. More than 50 pieces of local, regional and national coverage were generated and the story appeared on BBC Radio 4’s Shipping Forecast.

Outstanding PR Consultancy

3x1 Public Relations

Glasgow-based 3x1 Public Relations broke through the £1m fee barrier in 2007, representing a record 42 per cent increase on 2006. Its fees have more than doubled over the past three years.

Outstanding In-house PR Team

National Library of Scotland

‘A close knit unit that has performed extremely well against objectives and budget alike,’ said the judges. ‘While being proactive, the team has been equally reactive in times of crisis.’


Best Website by Falkirk Council

Falkirk Council’s new website was launched in 2007. Since then traffic to the site has increased from 91,000 to 170,000 visits each month. The site is designed to be easily navigated, with the most high-profile sections – council tax and benefits – easy to find through quick links. It is even fully accessible to visually impaired users. Judges were impressed by how easy the site is to navigate and the good use of photography.


Consumer Relations

Haggis Hotdogs Hit New York by VisitScotland

Tartan Day on 6 April commemorates the signing of the Declaration of Arbroath in 1320, the basis for the Declaration of Independence in the US.

Over the past several years VisitScotland has ‘hot-housed’ New York to capitalise on interest in Scotland and has extended the events programme from Tartan Day into Scotland Week. In 2008 VisitScotland was unable to use its usual venue – Vanderbilt Hall at Grand Central Station – due to refurbishment work.

Faced with no focal point in New York, VisitScotland’s PR team created a series of mobile events. The ‘haggis cart’ – a Scottish version of the traditional New York hotdog cart – was born. The coverage generated had an estimated audience reach of more than ten million.

Best Use of Photography or Design

Demolition of Sawmill at Fort William by Weber Shandwick

In April 2008, BSW Timber had a big problem. A 210 ft problem to be exact.

A 1960s power house, containing two steel boilers weighing more than 150 tonnes, stood directly in the way of BSW’s proposed new ‘supermill’, which was to be built on a former papermill site in the shadow of Ben Nevis, near Fort William.

The concrete and steel monolith stood as an ugly testament to the area’s industrial past. It also provided the most visual representation of a legacy of environmental mismanagement by the site’s former owners. The Weber Shandwick team decided the demolition should be promoted as an end of one era and the start of a new one for BSW Timber, the Fort William area, and for the Scottish timber industry.

‘Weber Shandwick managed to captive the media’s attention with this cleverly managed photocall,’ said the judges.


Internal Communications

Green Week ’08 by VisitScotland

VisitScotland’s Green Week aimed to increase staff awareness of green issues and create a programme of activities and information. Activities during the week included goodie bags filled with sustainable products, plants added to communal areas, use of local food in the staff canteen, and an increase in recycling options. The campaign began by recruiting green champions and built hype in the run-up to Green Week with a teaser campaign and recyclable information posters.

As a launch event, a viewing of An Inconvenient Truth was arranged at a local cinema. In total 96 per cent of staff said they would like to see Green Week become an annual event. Judges said the campaign was ‘creative, successful and exciting’.

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