Client: Securicor Cellular Services
PR Team: The Reputation Managers
Campaign: The Winning Business Awards
Timescale: September to May annually
Cost: pounds 40,000
TRM wished to promote mobile phone service provider, Securicor Cellular
Systems (SCS) to small businesses which represents a large potential
market for mobile phone services. However SCS was not considered to have
any real news to communicate. Since the small business sector is a very
diverse market to reach, the creation of a national business award was
considered a useful means of attracting the interest of a wide range of
industries. The Winning Business Awards are now in their fourth year.
To promote SCS as an ally of small businesses, establish a small
business database and build a relationship between them and SCS dealers.
Gaining the support of the Federation of Small Businesses gave the award
scheme valuable third party endorsement and provided SCS with a database
of 80,000 small businesses.
Following launch publicity using all types of media, small businesses
were contacted through their local SCS dealer from whom entry forms have
to be collected, thus establishing a local relationship.
Regional media contact and press releases also highlighted local SCS
dealers and their location. The diversity of industries taking part in
the awards gave opportunities for a wide range of trade press to be
targeted with customised press releases.
Creative photography shoots were organised for this year’s winners and
will be used for next year’s publicity. This year’s winners are also
being encouraged to use the award logo on their stationery.
This year’s campaign generated 115 articles and radio and TV coverage
over a nine month period. The effect on SCS has not been measured. The
client does not think that there has been a direct benefit to the bottom
line but believes that the awards have created greater awareness of its
services and established relationships between dealers and small
The profile of the awards has risen significantly in the last four years
and next year’s awards will probably uses SCS in the title to ensure
that they are more firmly identified with the company. The scope of the
awards is also being increased with banks with small business advisers
being circulated with details.
The awards wisely ensure that small businesses have to contact their
local SCS dealer which opens up a valuable communications channel. It
also provides almost year-round coverage. However, this year’s winner,
La Baguette du Jour is not a SCS user and service endorsement by winners
would be useful.
Dealers find the awards a useful point of contact with potential clients
although one said that it should be publicised better as more applicants
are needed. While the client is happy with the level of media coverage,
there could be some attempt to gauge the effect of this on business
volume and on small businesses. It may be that supplementary PR
programmes are needed to cement relationships.