Awards rewards: Christie McCarthy

As part of our push to remind you marcomms folk to get your entries in for the 2013 TVNZ-NZ Marketing Awards (entries close 5pm this Friday, but extensions are available  by clicking here), we're asking some past winners to tell us about their glorious victory, what it meant to the business and why these awards are different. Christie McCarthy, one half of Dollop Puddings alongside Julia Crownshaw, looks at it from the small business perspective. 

What did you win? Dollop won the Judges Choice award for Insight based on our successful PR strategy. Our key insight was that existing dessert brands on the market were, in the words of one of our focus group participants, 'common as muck'. Consumers wanted a return to the real thing: real ingredients, real recipes and real flavour.

What was it about your entry that stood out? Probably the fact that we were completely bonkers. Who in their right mind would attempt to launch a brand into the fiercely competitive FMCG market with a 12 month marketing budget of $6,000? Seriously though, I am very proud of what we have achieved with so little, reaching over four million people in the first year with our clever, unique approach to PR, branding and marketing.

How did winning help your company, your staff or your career? Aside from the obvious business credibility and brand awareness we gained from the win, it also gave us a huge confidence boost and was something really special we could celebrate. There are a lot of hard yards in the first two years of business so to be judged by the industry for all your hard work and come out on top is immensely satisfying.

Would you recommend other brands, businesses and agencies enter the awards? Absolutely. The awards are a great way to review your performance, reassess your strategy and identify what you are bloody good at (and not so good at). I also believe they play a hugely important role in the wider field of marketing. The awards demand excellence, encourage competitiveness and reward success and achievement. This can only be a positive thing for the industry and for New Zealand.

What are some of the major differences between the TVNZ-NZ Marketing awards and other awards? I think the phrase 'everything marketing' says it all and our win is testament to this. Unlike other marketing and creative awards whereby you need multi-million dollar budgets to be able to compete, the TVNZ-NZ Marketing awards judges every entry on its own merit. I believe this approach has the potential to add huge benefit to young businesses and entrepreneurs and I encourage more of them to enter.

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