The standard of submissions for the second quarterly award was so high that we have two winners for this quarter. Sandra Taylor, Head of PR & Events for Waterstones, was judging this award and felt these two very different campaigns were both equally worthy of being awarded the winning campaign.
The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas
Rosi Crawley (Walker Books) and Emma Draude (Ed PR)
Undeniably, the publicity campaign was a major driving force behind The Hate U Give becoming one of the bestselling YA debuts of the year so far. Securing the front cover interview in the Observer magazine for an unknown US debut author was particularly impressive, as was the necessary agile approach taken by the publicists when the snap election announcement inevitably shifted the news agenda away from their own. They still managed to secure the coveted sofa slot on BBC Breakfast, as well as key profile-raising and sales-driving BBC broadcast programmes.
Also notable was the carefully considered and inventive events strategy which showed, particularly with their City Hall evening, a genuine drive to reach an audience who wouldn’t necessarily attend book events. Reading about all that was achieved in this submission was a real joy and I’d like to say a huge congratulations to the publicists for an extremely impactful and considered campaign.
World Book Day
Caitlin Allen, Adele Minchin, Katy MacMillan-Scott, Thi Dinh, Laura Curtis
The 20th anniversary campaign for World Book Day was a masterstroke in strategic planning. With 522 pieces of print coverage, 242 of broadcast coverage and 75 key online ones, there’s no denying the energy that went into securing blanket media coverage, but it was the focus on ensuring that this coverage was as on message as possible – highlighting the role that World Book Day plays in getting books into the hands of children who otherwise might not have the opportunity to own one – that should be particularly commended. As should the partnerships strategy – teaming up with organisations and brands such as Nickelodeon and the National Trust – to further broaden reach of World Book Day beyond the classroom. Beautifully planned and executed, there’s no doubt that Riot’s campaign helped to continue to cement World Book Day as one of the biggest and most eagerly anticipated moments in the book trade calendar.