‘Best Healthcare Campaign’ at the CIPR PRide Midlands Awards

I’m really pleased to announce that a research-based campaign I led at Slimming World received the Gold award for ‘Best Healthcare Campaign’ at the CIPR PRide Awards for the Midlands on Friday (14 November).

The ‘What’s Your Tipping Point?’ campaign was designed to encourage people to be mindful of how drinking alcohol past a certain ‘tipping point’ can lead to us drinking more than intended, making more unhealthy food choices and cancelling physical activity plans. I think the full English breakfast and lack of a Park Run on Saturday confirm that there is at least some truth in our findings.

The event took place at Coventry’s Ricoh Arena on Friday night, which had just been purchased by the Rugby team ‘Wasps’ (an announcement was published by The Guardian at about the same time as we arrived at the venue). Yet while we definitely detected a buzz in the room, for the 300 attendees, tonight was all about the CIPR PRide Awards.

This was the first CIPR event I had attended but having learnt so much from their Diploma course I already had a pretty good impression of them. After watching these two dudes do football tricks on stage that positive impression was set in stone.

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It was a well-presented event with an air of professionalism that matched the CIPR’s reputation. There was an interesting video about the CIPR council, a three-course dinner and, for once, free wifi! Could it get any better?

Our shortlisted ‘What’s Your Tipping point?’ campaign was released back in April and we had been delighted with the results achieved. Our report generated more than 150 news articles, led to more than 70,000 people taking an online quiz to find out how alcohol might be affecting their weight and kick-started ongoing discussion among politicians and health experts about the benefits of adding calorie counts to alcohol labels. A campaign evaluation showed that 29% of the UK population heard about the report in the 2-weeks after the launch and, of those, 23% reported drinking less as a result. So it was a strong campaign, but we still didn’t expect to win.

There seemed to be a gap of X Factor proportions between announcing the nominees and revealing the winner, but fortunately our campaign struck all the right notes with the judges (ba-dum-ch!) and we were announced as the Gold winners. The CIPR commented:

“Strong objectives with defined measurability, this was a campaign talking about something people often deflect from engaging with – drinking too much. The team used research well to understand the audience and how best to reach them – through creative and equally main stream channels. Excellent results showed true behavioural change and impact on people’s health.”

The CIPR PRide awards recognise excellence in public relations and communications work, so it’s a real honour to win one of their awards. Having also been named ‘In-house PR Team of the year’ for the Midlands at the PRCA DARE awards in April, it’s been a pretty good year! Here we are on-stage collecting our award.

CIPR Pride awards photo
Slimming World’s PR team collecting our award from CIPR Midlands chairman Lisa Jones (far left) and Sky News presenters Tom Parmenter (second from left) and Lisa Dowd (far right). From left to right in-between, Slimming World PR and Public Affairs team members Megan, Jenny, me, Amy, Nicala and Sarah.

So there you have it, our second award of the year and the perfect end to a very busy week. We’d hit the majority of the papers on Wednesday with our announcement of a remarkable lady called Bríanán McEnteggart, who lost 20st, as Slimming World’s Woman of the Year 2014. So, as you can imagine, after winning the ‘Best Healthcare Campaign’ award we were even more in the mood to celebrate. There was champagne and we definitely passed our tipping point!

ps – you can see our entry used a case study on the CIPR website here.

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