Award Entry & Judging Criteria

The information below refers to the 4 new Awards. For information on the New Marketing Talent (NMT) Award please refer directly to the NMT section of the website.

Entry Rules

  • Entries not submitted in accordance with the details set out below will not be judged.
  • Entries for the Awards must have been used for promotional purposes between the 23rd March and 31st December 2020.
  • AN ENTRY WILL BE REFUSED IF IT HAS BEEN FOUND TO BE IN BREACH OF THE NOAH CODE OF PRACTICE AT THE TIME OF JUDGING, OR IT IS SUBJECT TO A COMPLAINT THAT IS SUBSEQUENTLY UPHELD.
  • The VMA reserves the right to refuse entries submitted after the closing date of Friday 26th March 2021.

Entry Submissions

  • All entries must be submitted online at www.vma.org.uk before the closing date of Friday 26th March 2021, 17:00.
  • Each entry will need to include:
    • A formatted entry board image file (JPG/JPEG or PDF) capable of being printed to A2 size (594mm x 420mm). Files should be high res (300 dpi) but not exceed 25MB.
    • The required details for the category into which the piece is entered – you will be prompted for the details when submitting your entry.

Entry Fees

  • There is a fee of £87.50 (+VAT) for each entry submitted, with the exception of the Best B2C Campaign which is FREE to enter. Charges are to cover the costs of administration of the awards, the judging expenses plus the production of your entry board for displaying at the event. After submission you will be sent an invoice for payment by BACS, using the following details: a/c number 22953388; sort code 60-04-23. Note: the invoice may take 24 hours.
  • Entries cannot be accepted until full payment has cleared. Entries submitted without payment will not be accepted and will not be judged. Please send remittances or payment questions to accounts@vma.org.uk

Entry Process

  • Please complete the requested information – all fields are compulsory.
  • Upload your entry board – JPG/JPEG or PDF capable of being printed to A2 size (594mm x 420mm). Files should be high res (300 dpi) but not exceed 25MB. You may wish to submit short video’s or links to similar media to demonstrate your entry. Videos should be no more than 2 minutes in length and be utilised to further demonstrate the entry. Note: videos will be judged on content only they do not need to be of production quality.
  • Complete the payment – by BACS.

Judging Process

We will once again be conducting a first phase of online judging to enable a larger number and more diverse panel of judges to review entries ahead of the judging day which will either be held by Zoom or at the IPA, depending on COVID restrictions at the time. The process is as follows:

  • Stage one, 12th April 2021 – 7th May 2021: All entries reviewed and scored online by a panel of judges in accordance with the judging criteria for the category. Up to ten entries from each category will be put forward for stage two judging.
  • Stage two: 19th May 2021: Judging day via Zoom/at the IPA, London. The shortlisted entries from each category will be further reviewed
  • There will be an appointed independent head judge on the judging day who will not express their views but will encourage other judges to express theirs and manage the debate, conducting voting when necessary.
  • On the judging day the overall winner and two highly commended entries will be decided for each category.

Judging Panel

  • There will be approximately 25 judges who will judge the first online stage and of these approximately 8 who will be involved with the second stage judging day.
  • The judging panel will contain a wide mix of demographics: Skill sets; experience and expertise; gender; age and geographic locations. Judges will include distinguished representatives from the veterinary profession, and prominent healthcare advertising figures such as creative directors within leading agencies.
  • Judges will be allowed to judge any category unless they have work in contention or any other conflict of interest.
  • Details of all the judges will be available on the VMA website prior to the commencement of the judging process.

Judging Criteria

Best B2B (Animal Health Manufacturer to Veterinary Practice/Animal Health Retailer) Support Campaign during the COVID Pandemic.

This award is intended for companies that have demonstrated initiative, innovation and agility in the marketing support of their products and/or services to veterinary practices/animal health retailers, during the COVID-19 pandemic. Eligible entries can include display advertising, direct mail, video, digital, social media activity, e-marketing, website, etc. or other marketing activity. The material must have appeared in the UK between March and December 2020.

Judging Criteria:

  1. Initial Impact: Does the entry stand out? Is there an overall wow factor? Is the entry engaging and interesting?
  2. Audience Appeal: Does the entry demonstrate a good understanding of the target audience for this category? Is the entry appropriate for the audience? Is the entry appealing to the target audience?
  3. Creativity/Originality: Specifically considering the animal health industry has the entry demonstrated creative thinking or delivery? Does the entry look/feel original?
  4. Messaging: Do the headlines draw you in? Is the copy well written? Is the messaging clear and appropriate? Does the messaging persuade to purchase or influence beliefs?
  5. Achievement: How well has the entry met its SMART* objectives? Do the results demonstrate achievement?
  6. Initiative/Innovation/Agility: Does the entry look and feel fresh? Does it demonstrate innovation or taking the initiative in challenging circumstances? Is it appropriate? Does the entry demonstrate marketing agility and adaptability?

*SMART Objectives: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Time-Bound.

Best B2C (Veterinary Practice/Animal Health Retailer to Pet/Equine/Farm Animal Owners) Support Campaign during the COVID Pandemic.

This award is intended for veterinary practices/animal health retailers that have demonstrated initiative, innovation and agility in the marketing support of their products and/or services to end users during the COVID-19 pandemic. Eligible entries can include display advertising, direct mail, video, digital, social media activity, e-marketing, website, etc. or other marketing activity. The material must have appeared in the UK between March and December 2020.

Judging Criteria:

  1. Initial Impact: Does the entry stand out? Is there an overall wow factor? Is the entry engaging and interesting?
  2. Audience Appeal: Specifically considering the COVID-19 pandemic environment, does the entry demonstrate a good understanding of the target audience for this category? Is the entry appropriate for the audience? Is the entry appealing to the target audience needs?
  3. Creativity/Originality: Specifically considering the animal health industry has the entry demonstrated creative thinking or delivery? Does the entry look/feel original?
  4. Messaging: Do the headlines draw you in? Is the copy well written? Is the messaging clear and appropriate? Does the messaging persuade to purchase or influence beliefs?
  5. Achievement: How well has the entry met its SMART* objectives? Do the results demonstrate achievement?
  6. Initiative/Innovation/Agility: Does the entry look and feel fresh? Does it demonstrate innovation or taking the initiative in challenging circumstances? Is it appropriate? Does the entry demonstrate marketing agility and adaptability?

*SMART Objectives: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Time-Bound.

Best Virtual Event

This award is intended for companies that have demonstrated initiative, innovation and agility in adapting previous face-to-face events to virtual events during 2020 due to the cancellation/postponement of live events OR utilising virtual events in a unique way to meet marketing objectives.

Judging Criteria:

  1. Initial Impact: Was the pre-event promotion, branding and delivery of the event engaging and relevant to the target audience? Did it cut through the on-line heavy traffic that occurred during the year and offer incentives through engaging content for delegates to want to attend?
  2. Audience Appeal: Does the entry demonstrate a good understanding of the target audience for this category? Was the content relevant to them. Were there live elements for them to engage with as they would in a real-life situation?
  3. Creativity/Originality and delivery: Did the event offer an exciting delegate journey through the use of creative branding, engaging content and technical ease for the user? Could they interact in real time?
  4. Follow up: Is there evidence of follow up with attendees post event? Does any follow up reflect and support the overall virtual event messages and aims?
  5. Achievement: How well has the entry met its SMART* objectives? Do the results demonstrate achievement? Did the event achieve its desired number of attendees? Was there positive feedback after the event and added value deliverables and support?
  6. Initiative/Innovation/Agility: Did the event demonstrate innovation or taking the initiative in challenging circumstances, showing marketing and technical agility and adaptability?

*SMART Objectives: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Time-Bound.

Marketing Team of the Year 2020

This award is intended to recognise and celebrate successful marketing teams; whether in terms of results, productivity or the support they provided to their colleagues or clients within the sector. This award is open to entries in relation to any business across the animal health and veterinary sector. Entrants are able to submit nominations for teams that they work with, or teams in which they play an active role. Entrants are encouraged to consider the impact their nominated team has had on their professional role considering the following judging criteria. Eligible entries should provide examples, statistics and tangible outcomes to demonstrate the achievements of the nominated team.

Judging Criteria:

  1. Impact: What positive impact has the team had on those they work with in the industry?
  2. Achievement: Considering the team achievements in the following identified areas.
    • Results – does this team consistently reach or exceed targets? Is there evidence of their success with a specific product or campaign?
    • Productivity – does this team demonstrate an admirable work ethic? To what extent have they played an identifiable role in their business or client’s success?
    • Support – Has this team been seen to be going to extra lengths to support their colleagues/clients during the COVID-19 pandemic? What effect or impact has this had on the working lives of others?
  3. Originality/Innovation: Specifically considering the animal health industry, does this team display a way of working that is innovative and original? Do they strive to be better or do better within the sector?
  4. Partnerships: Is there evidence that this team works to foster long-term partnerships with internal and/or external stakeholders.

What Happens Next?

  • Your entries along with judging criteria will be made available for the stage one online judging in April.
  • Entries will then be either be printed/ digitally made available together with their scores from stage one for the judging day in May.
  • NO entrants will be notified of the results in advance of 18th June 2021.
  • All entries will be on display at the awards ceremony on 18th June 2021, unless specifically requested not to – please contact secretary@vma.org.uk should this be the case.
  • ONLY the top five from each category will be included in the stage presentation at the ceremony.
  • At the ceremony there will be an Award for the company and agency submitting the winning entry in each category and highly commended certificates for runners-up in each category.

Good luck!!

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