Our already packed awards shelf is going to need reinforcing following last night’s Chartered Institute of Public Relations’ (CIPR) Yorkshire & Lincolnshire PRide Awards where we picked up our 9th and 10th awards since setting up in business seven years ago. We scooped Gold in the Best Use of Content category for our work with SME manufacturer Nova Tissue, and Silver in the Outstanding Young Communicator category for our amazing Account Manager Chloe Greenwood.

The CIPR PRide Awards are the leading regional PR/comms awards and recognise the outstanding work delivered across the region, marking winners out as industry leaders.

We are particularly proud of our Account Manager Chloe Greenwood for coming second in the race to be named the region’s Outstanding Young Communicator; an accolade that our Founding Director Helen Gill won back in 2010. The award recognises the most talented young professional under the age of 30 in the PR/comms industry in Yorkshire & Lincolnshire and, aged just 25 and having come into the industry through a non-traditional vocational apprenticeship, it is a huge achievement for Chloe to even be shortlisted let alone win a Silver Award.

Chloe joined Engage Comms more than five years ago when the business had been going less than two years and has been instrumental in its growth and success. She is now an Account Manager working on digital and traditional marketing comms projects across a wide range of B2B regional and national clients. Gaining this recognition at this point in her career is testament to what a talented young professional Chloe is and what a bright future she has ahead of her.

Not only has Chloe’s vocational education background, which she gained after doing well academically at school but chose not to go to university, benefited her and the business hugely in terms of her professionalism beyond her years; her ability to be an active learner, constantly updating her skills ‘on the job’; and the personal experience she has brought to working with clients in the education and skills sector, but she has also used her strong personal brand to champion Apprenticeships as a credible route into a professional career.

We also yet again beat off competition from a much bigger agency with a much bigger campaign budget in the Best Use of Content category to scoop Gold for our work with SME discount toilet tissue and kitchen roll manufacturer, Nova Tissue. We were recognised for not only our creativity but also our tangible impact on the business, contributing to a 20% increase in sales enquiries, almost all of which come via the website, and significant turnover growth from £6.5m in 2017 to £8m in 2018 and a projected £9.5m in 2019. Our cost effective, agile campaign also contributed to a net profit increase of 40% from 2017 to 2018.

Khurram Iqbal, Managing Director, Nova Tissue, said: “The engaging, creative content that Engage Comms has created and shared on our behalf over the last 12 months has helped us to stand out from our competitors, tap into new markets, and stay ‘front of mind’ with past and existing customers in a tough marketplace and turbulent political and economic environment. The fact that they are able to come up with new things to say that resonate with our target audiences in a non-salesy way has positioned us as a reputable company and trusted partner rather than just another supplier.” 

The judges commented: “This was a highly impactful, creative campaign that transformed a product-lead sales brief into a fun, engaging strategy with storytelling at its heart. Through its innovative, multi-channel approach to content development and deployment, the campaign successfully drove sales to the company’s website, resulting in impressive return on investment.” The full list of winners and winning case studies can be found here.

Finally, we were delighted (and still very sad) to see that Carol Rennard (nee Arthur), who recently passed away after battling cancer, was recognised for her contribution to our industry and region and were pleased to donate to the charities of which she was a Trustee. Engage Comms Founding Director Helen Gill, who previously worked with Carol and considered her a good friend, said: “Carol was so much more than just an excellent comms professional. She was a mentor to me and many others, not just professionally but personally. Her positive, pragmatic outlook on life, her unflappable professionalism under pressure, her ability to innovate and think outside the box, and her genuine kindness and humour, made her someone truly special. I still use the words of wisdom she gave me over the years in my work and life every day and will continue to remember and learn from her. I was so glad to see her charity work, which I know was very close to her heart, being recognised at the awards last night.”