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2022 Award winners spotlight: Grand Prix and Digital Expert of the Year Awards

David Murphy

All this week, we are taking a closer look at the winning campaigns and platforms in the 6th edition of the Effective Digital Marketing Awards. The winners were announced at an Awards Ceremony held last Friday. We start with a look at the winners of the Grand Prix Award and out two Digital Exert of the Year Awards.

Grand Prix
MSF UK and Crafted – Afghan Crisis Appeal 2021

Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders (MSF) has long had a presence in Afghanistan, but now, their help is needed more than ever. The struggling healthcare system is at breaking point after years of instability, devastating conflict and a lack of funding, with international aid for Afghanistan having been withdrawn. MSF UK is one of the few international medical charities working in Afghanistan in part because it has no political affiliation and simply goes where help is needed most. But it’s work would not be possible without public donations, which was the focus of this campaign, which aimed to increase awareness of MSF and its work in Afghanistan, and dpaid advertising donations to support the overall target of £1.2m.

Before the campaign started, MSF UK’s creative agency KROW ran a creative workshop day. At this, all teams were randomly mixed up to work on their own messaging ideas and spoke about how they could be integrated across all channels. The key for Crafted was making sure the digital element was considered from the beginning of the creative process. At the end of the workshop, everyone presented their ideas and then the MSF team and KROW worked together on the idea they liked best, which turned into the Afghan Crisis Appeal messaging and approach.  

The campaign embraced a full-funnel strategy, from awareness to retargeting, running across DRTV, press, radio, podcasts, direct mail, email, influencer marketing, display, video, social, and search. All agencies involved utilised the same in-house designed creative and messaging to ensure consistency across all channels. The digital fundraising campaign was designed to capture every bit of awareness from all channels and convert it into donations.

Awareness activity ran on Facebook, Bing Ads, Google Ads, display and video 360, influencers, Instagram, Pinterest, Pocket, Teads, Twitter, YouTube, Quantcast, Nextdoor, and on podcasts. The conversion element ran on Facebook, Bing Ads, Google Ads, display and video 360, Instagram, YouTube and Quantcast. Retargeting activity ran on Facebook, display and video 360, Instagram and YouTube. The Google search campaign included more generic Afghanistan keywords to lead users with high donate-intent to the MSF website.

Creative content was curated from the best performing formats from previous campaigns, such as shorter, 15-second videos. Creative also used a variety of video and imagery from photography from the centre of the crisis and MSF’s work to illustrative approaches when MSF were unable to acquire video and images owing to the complex situation in Afghanistan.

The campaign generated more than 139m impressions, over 337,000 clicks and 1.8m video views. In just over two months, it generated £1.2m in donations through paid media activity alone, 120 per cent up on the previous year. The total amount donated came in at £2,774,242, a 37 per cent increase on the previous year. Overall, 41 per cent of all Afghanistan campaign donors were new, and of the new donors, 34 per cent were acquired through digital channels. The campaign directly contributed to MSF’s best month ever (December) for donations through the charity’s website.

As one of the judges summed it up: The campaign was well strategised, executed and implemented, the emotional layer attached to it reflecting the harsh reality. Using the right communication channels and executions helped deliver better-than-expected results.”

The campaign also took the individual category awards for Most Effective Performance Marketing Campaign and Most Effective Integrated Campaign.

Digital Expert of the Year – North America: Inmar Intelligence
The Digital Expert of the Year Awards are determined by over 5,000 brand marketers that have attended Masterclassing events in person and virtually around the world during the last year. At each event, attendees complete a feedback form and comment on the most effective presentations and compelling roundtable discussions. The results have been tabulated to determine the Digital Expert of the Year.

The award for the Digital Expert of the Year – North America went to data platform company, Inmar Intelligence. Here’s what attendees at Masterclassing’s North American events said about the company…

“This was exactly what I needed to put the team and me back on track”

“I really enjoyed the quality presentation”

“Super helpful insights and expert-led discussion”

“I loved the interactive and engaging speaker and content.”

Digital Expert of the Year – UK, EMEA and APAC: Sinch
For our second special award, we turn our focus to the Digital Expert of the Year for the Masterclassing events conducted in the UK, Europe, the Middle East, Australia, and Singapore. The award for the Digital Expert of the Year – UK, EMEA and APAC, went to cloud communications firm, Sinch. Here’s what attendees at Masterclassing’s UK, EMEA and APAC events said about the company…

“The content was really engaging and thought provoking as to how we could use these ideas within my organisation”

“I really liked the approach they took to start a discussion asking the audience questions, facilitating engagement and really driving home their point”

“My favourite breakout room – most relevant for me and my daily business. Had good slides with takeaways that I could share with my team. Engaged host and really enjoyed listening to him!”

“Interesting insights and data presented. Captivating speaker. It was spot on!”

We’ll be back with a look at more of the winning entries tomorrow. In the meantime, you can see a recording of the Awards Ceremony here.