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2014 Thoth Call for Entries

         2014 THOTH AWARDS CALL FOR ENTRIES

          Public Relations Society of America
          National Capital Chapter

 

 

EARLY BIRD FEES: Received by Friday, May 23, 2014
• PRSA-NCC Members: $120 for first entry, $100 for subsequent entries                                         
• Non-NCC Members: $160 for all entries

STANDARD FEES: Received May 24 to June 24, 2014 (extended from June 20)
• PRSA-NCC Members: $160 for first entry, $140 for subsequent entries
• Non-NCC Members: $200 for all entries

Download the Complete Call for Entries Package as a pdf file.  Please note that this document has not yet been updated to reference the new deadline of June 24.

WHAT ARE THE THOTH AWARDS?

Named for the Egyptian god of communication, the Thoth (pronounced “tot”) Awards recognize the most outstanding, strategic public relations programs and components developed and produced in the Greater Washington, D.C. area.  Achievements are recognized in 35 categories, including 16 program categories that celebrate the very best PR campaigns and 19 component categories that highlight top accomplishments in PR tactics.
    
The Public Relations Society of America’s National Capital Chapter (PRSA-NCC) sponsors the local annual Thoth competition to recognize and reward outstanding achievement in public relations and to encourage continued excellence in the field. Finalists in each category will be notified by email in August following judging of the Thoth entries by senior practitioners. From these finalists, the Thoth Award and the Award of Excellence winners will be announced at the Thoth Award’s Gala that will take place on September 9, 2014 at the Artisphere in Arlington, VA.

Did you enter PRSA’s National Silver Anvil or Bronze Anvil Awards program?
If so, please note that the Thoth program and components category definitions and requirements closely follow the PRSA Silver and Bronze Anvil awards. By taking a little extra time to repurpose your Anvil entry for submission in the Thoth Awards competition, you’ll be maximizing your chance of winning an award and gaining recognition for your organization and your outstanding work.  In other words, one campaign or project can be submitted as a program AND as a component, which increases the chances of a winning entry.
 

PREPARING YOUR ENTRY
Please follow all the instructions carefully. Failure to comply may lead to disqualification.

We will notify you by email to acknowledge receipt of your entry. Should you become a finalist, we will contact you again by email., and winners will be announced the night of the gala.  The email address you provide when entering the competition will be the address used for these purposes. Please notify PRSA-NCC if your email address changes.

Remember to enclose the following:
1. Entry fee (entry fees are not refundable), including both the payment and information forms attached to this package. Checks should be made payable to PRSA-NCC.
2. Entry form (photocopies are acceptable). Please make sure the entry category you assign to your entry on this form matches the category list provided in this document.
3. One hundred-word summary statement (used to describe your entry during awards presentation).
4. Two-page summary for program entry or one-page summary for component entry, as described in next section (minimum of 10-point typeface and one inch margins).
5. Entry binder (limit to three inches, please).  The binder should include the following information:

  • Page 1, entry form
  • Page 2, 100-word summary as page 2
  • Pages 3 & 4,  the two-page summary for program entry as pages 3 and 4

OR

  • Page 3, the one-page summary for component entry as page
  • Pages that follow should be in labeled, tabbed sections behind the initial 3 to 4 pages. This would include any supporting materials cited in the one- or two-page summary. Examples of supporting materials are videos, research reports, surveys, news releases, clippings and samples of tactical materials.

6. Electronic copy (on CD or DVD) of your 100-word summary, your two-page program summary or your one-page component summary and a 300 DPI JPEG of your company, client and/or project logo(s).
7. Note that budget information is a required and essential item for your entry to be properly judged.   

 
ENTRY DEADLINE & FEES

Submit Early and Save
To save even more on entries, consider taking advantage of Thoth’s EARLY BIRD fees, which are $120 for members and $160 for non-members.

MEMBERS BENEFIT: Subsequent Early Bird entries from members (the same individual or organization) are $100 each.
All Early Bird entries submitted by non-members are $160 each.
In order to qualify for reduced rates, all EARLY BIRD entries must be RECEIVED by 5 p.m., Friday, May 23, 2014.

Standard Fees
The standard entry fee for the 2014 Thoth Awards competition is $160 for members of PRSA-NCC, $200 for non-members.

MEMBER BENEFIT: Please note that the more you enter, the more you save on entry fees.  Subsequent entries from the same member (individual or organization) are $140 each.
All entries submitted by non-members are $200 each.  
All entries must be received by 5 p.m., Tuesday, June 24, 2014.  Entries postmarked on that date will be acceptable.

Send your entries to:

Thoth Awards, PRSA-NCC
10378 Democracy Lane, Suite A
Fairfax, VA  22030
703-691-9212

Pay by credit card or check. Checks should be made payable to PRSA-NCC. American Express, Visa or MasterCard accepted.

THOTH CONTACTS
2014 Thoth Awards Judging Chairs: Amy Goodwin at agoodwin@jhmi.edu; Jill Landsman at jlandsman@nvar.com
2014 Thoth Awards Chair: Jasmine Smith at jasmine.r.smith@gmail.com

PROGRAMS (Categories 1-17)
A two-page summary should be typed using no smaller than a 10-point typeface and one inch margins.  Please note: Criteria closely follow that used for the national PRSA Silver Anvil Awards.

Below are questions to answer when writing a winning entry. The number one reason entries are disqualified is that the summaries do not address all criteria listed.

Research:
• Describe the situation on which the program is based. When addressing the actual research component, describe who specifically initiated the research.
• Was it in response to a problem or to examine a potential problem or challenge?
• Did research help to re-define the situation in any way?
• How was the research relevant to shaping the planning process?
• How did the research help define the audience(s) or the situation?
• Did you conduct an audit of the media climate?

Planning:
• How do the plans correlate to the research findings?
• Who was involved in the planning? In general terms, what was the plan? For example, what were the specific objectives of the program?
• Who were the target audiences?
• What was the overall strategy employed? What materials were used?
• What was your budget? Be specific. What other resources were used? Include staff time.

Execution:
• How were the plans executed and what were the results?
• In general terms, how did the activities flow?
• Were there any difficulties encountered? If so, how were they handled?
• Were other organizations involved?
• Were other non-traditional public relations tactics (i.e. advertising) employed? (Unless you are entering this program under “Integrated Communications,” advertising costs should not exceed one-third of the budget.)

Evaluation:
• What method(s) of evaluation were used?
• How are results related to research findings?
• How are results related to strategic objectives?

COMPONENTS (Categories 18-35)

Develop a concise summary, no longer than a single page, which should include objectives, audiences, budget and results. Enclose an actual copy of the component in the form used. For example, if the item is a printed piece, please include a sample of the printed material; do not just provide an electronic copy. If you are entering the same piece in more than one category, you must submit separate entries and forms for each category, along with an appropriate number of samples with each category entry submitted. Please note: Criteria closely follow that of the national PRSA Bronze Anvil Awards.

ELIGIBILITY
Quality, creativity and resourcefulness in public relations or communications programs are the hallmarks of the Thoth Awards. The competition is open regardless of budget, to any company, association, counseling firm, government agency or other organization in the Washington, D.C.  Metropolitan area and entry is not limited to PRSA members. This year’s competition covers programs carried out entirely or in large part between January 1, 2013, and December 31, 2013.

PROGRAM CATEGORIES

Did you enter the National PRSA Silver Anvil awards competition? Use your Silver Anvil entry as a starting point as the program criteria for the Thoth Awards closely follow the criteria for the national PRSA Silver Anvil Awards.

These categories provide an opportunity for full programs or campaigns to be recognized for excellence. Designate on the official entry form the category that most closely fits the primary purpose of your entry. You may submit more than one entry per category or entries in several categories, but each entry must be packaged separately.

1. Community Relations: Programs that seek to win the support or cooperation of, or that aim to improve relations with, people or organizations in communities in which the sponsoring organization has an interest, need or opportunity. “Community” in this category refers to a specific geographic location or locations. Campaigns designed to promote products or services should be entered in either category 7 or category 8.

2. Reputation/Brand Management: Programs designed to enhance, promote or improve the reputation of an organization with its publics, either proactively or in response to an issue, event or market occurrence.  

  • 2A. Business
  • 2B. Government
  • 2C. Associations/Nonprofit Organizations

3. Events and Observances (seven or fewer days): Programs or events scheduled for one to seven consecutive days (not including planning and preparation). Events may be commemorations, observances, openings, celebrations or other special activities and must occur within a time span of one week.

4. Events and Observances (more than seven days): Programs, events, or activities that take place for longer than a one-week period, such as a yearlong anniversary (commemorations, observances, celebrations, etc.).

5. Public Service: Programs that advance public understanding of a societal issue, problem or concern. Similar programs conducted principally to enhance an organization’s standing or to otherwise serve its interests directly should fall in Category 2: Reputation/Brand Management.

6. Public Affairs: Programs specifically designed to influence public policy and/or affect legislation, regulations, political activities or candidacies—at the local, state or federal government levels—so that the entity funding the program benefits.

  • 6A. Business
  • 6B. Government
  • 6C. Associations/Nonprofit Organizations

7. Marketing Consumer Products and Services: Programs designed to introduce new or promote existing products and/or services to a consumer audience.

8. Marketing Business-to-Business Products and Services: Programs designed to introduce new or promote existing products or services to a business audience.

9. Global Communications: Any type of program (institutional, marketing, events, etc.) sponsored by a U.S. agency, a U.S. organization, or a global organization with a U.S. presence. The program demonstrates effective global communications implemented in two or more countries (e.g., one could be in the U.S. but the program must include one other country).

10. Crisis Communications: Program undertaken to deal with an event or issues that has had or may have an extraordinary impact.

11. Issues Management: Programs undertaken to deal with issues that could extraordinarily affect ongoing business or organization strategy.

12. Internal Communications: Includes programs targeted specifically to special publics directly affiliated with an organization (i.e., employees, members, affiliated dealers or franchisees).

  • 12A. For organizations with fewer than 10,000 employees or members
  • 12B. For organizations with 10,000 or more employees or members

13. Financial and Investor Relations: Programs directed to shareowners, other investors and the investment community.

  • 13A. Companies with revenues up to $500 Million
  • 13B. Companies with revenues of $500 Million or more

14. Multicultural Public Relations: Any type of program (i.e., institutional, marketing, or community relations) specifically targeted to a cultural group.

15. Integrated Communications: A program that employs the creative and effective integration and leadership of public relations strategies and tactics with other promotional marketing communications. It should demonstrate the integration of strategies, plus the budget and measurement of return on investment of the communications to any stakeholder group including employees, consumers, the media, investors and shareholders.

  • 15A. Consumer Products or Services
  • 15B. Business to Business
  • 15C. Government
  • 15D. Associations/Nonprofit Organizations

16. Pro Bono Public Relations: A public relations program created on behalf of or by a non-profit (501(c)(3) organization . This program must be created, developed and executed by an individual practitioner or an agency without financial compensation to that individual or agency.

17. Independent Public Relations Practitioners and Small Independent Firms’ Media Relations Programs and/or Campaigns:  Any media relations campaign created and executed by public relations practitioners or counselors in the Washington, D.C. Metro area who own or operate a sole independent PR business or consulting firm or a PR firm having three or fewer employees, not counting the owner.


COMPONENT CATEGORIES

Did you enter the National PRSA Bronze Anvil awards competition? Use your Bronze Anvil entry as a starting point as the components criteria for the Thoth Awards closely follow the criteria for the national PRSA Bronze Anvil Awards.

These categories provide an opportunity for individual elements of larger programs to be recognized for excellence. Designate on the official entry form the category that most closely fits the primary purpose of your entry. You may submit more than one entry per category or entries in several categories, but each entry must be packaged separately.

Your one-page summary for each entry should include objectives, audiences, budget and results as well as usage statistics, metrics or other means to quantify measurement of results to support stated objectives.

18. Integrated Media Relations: Tactics, programs and events driven entirely by media relations that generate news coverage across full spectrum of online, broadcast, print and social media outlets. Provide a one-page summary that includes measurable objectives, rationale for the strategy, and statistics or other means of quantifiable measurement to support stated objectives. Submit any supporting materials, such as press releases, media advisories, satellite media tour materials, pitch letters, relevant tweets or posts, requests for coverage, outgoing messages to bloggers, etc., along with evidence of the resulting media coverage.  For online coverage, provide URL for actual sites that still are live and relevant to the project. For television and radio broadcast coverage, submit materials on DVD or USB flash drive. For print articles, blog posts or other online coverage, provide screen captures or PDFs on a CD, DVD or USB flash drive.  

  • 18A. Campaigns on Budget under $25,000
  • 18B. Campaigns on Budget of $25,000 and up

19. Media Relations:  Proactive outreach campaigns designed to target and leverage a specific type of media community on behalf of a product, service or organization. Provide a one-page summary that includes measurable objectives, rationale for the strategy, and statistics or other means of quantifiable measurement to support stated objectives. Submit any supporting materials, such as press releases, media advisories, satellite media tour materials, pitch letters, relevant tweets or posts, requests for coverage, outgoing messages to bloggers, etc., along with evidence of the resulting media coverage.  For online coverage, provide URL for actual sites that still are live and relevant to the project. For TV and Radio broadcast coverage, submit materials on DVD or USB flash drive. For print articles, blog posts or other online coverage, provide screen captures or PDFs on a CD, DVD or USB flash drive.  

  • 19A. Television Campaign
  • 19B. Radio Campaign
  • 19C. Print Campaign
  • 19D. Blogger Campaign

20 Social Media:  This category includes the use of Smartphone applications, web widgets, Twitter, Facebook and YouTube campaigns, and other forms of social media, which are used as part of public relations programs. The one-page summary should include rationale for the social media strategy, statistics, or other means of quantifiable measurement to support stated objectives. Submit any supporting materials, such as URL address of sites involved, screen captures, outgoing messages, news releases, audio or video files, etc., along with evidence of the results. Submit screen captures, audio and video materials on DVD or USB flash drive.

  • 20A. News Release/Announcement – activities where social media was leveraged to share news or information directly with your audience.
  • 20B. Video – a successful initiative driven through videos on YouTube, Vine or Instagram that built awareness with internal or external audiences.
  • 20C. Advocacy – share how social media spread information related to an issue or cause.
  • 20D. Events – for events primarily promoted through social media outlets.
  • 20E. Apps – use of an original app to build brand awareness, to promote an initiative, sway public opinion or achieve another goal.

21. Podcast/Webcast: The one-page summary should include rationale, strategy, statistics, or other means of quantifiable measurement to support stated objectives. A copy of the actual podcast and/or webcast being entered on an audio CD or DVD, as well as the actual site URL, or other audio or video program must be submitted as part of the entry.

22. Blog: Web-based journals, or blogs, which communicate either a corporate, public service or industry position. The one-page summary should include rationale for blogging strategy, target audiences and statistics, and quantifiable measurement to support stated objectives. Screen downloads of the blog being entered, as well as the actual site URL, must be submitted as part of the story.

23. Brochures: Pamphlets, booklets or other small publications designed to inform a target audience about an organization, product, service or issue. The format can be electronic or print.  The one-page summary should include the audience, measurable objectives, rationale for the brochure, and statistics on results, or other means of quantifiable measurement to support stated objectives.

  • 23A. Print – Submit one copy of the publication along with one-page summary.
  • 23B. Electronic – Submit entry on a CD or USB flash drive with a one-page summary.

24. Press Kits/Media Kits: News releases, photographs and other background information compiled for an organization, product or issue. The one-page summary should include the audience, measurable objectives, rationale for the press/media kit, and statistics on results, or other means of quantifiable measurement to support stated objectives.

  • 24A. Print – Submit one copy of the publication along with one-page summary.
  • 24B. Electronic – Submit entry on a CD, DVD or USB flash drive with a one-page summary.

25. Newsletters and Magazines: Publications (either print or electronic) designed, written and published periodically to provide timely information to target audiences while supporting an organization’s overall objectives. Submit three consecutive issues. The one-page summary should include the audience, measurable objectives, rationale for the newsletter or magazine, and statistics on results, or other means of quantifiable measurement to support stated objectives.

26. Publications: Single-issue publications designed for a special purpose. The format can be electronic or print.  Category includes annual reports that report on an organization’s annual performance, books and other publications not eligible for consideration in other categories. The one-page summary should include the audience, measurable objectives, rationale for the publication, and statistics on results, or other means of quantifiable measurement to support stated objectives.

  • 26A. Print - Submit one copy of the publication along with one-page summary.
  • 26B. Electronic - Submit entry on a CD, DVD or USB flash drive with a one-page summary.

27. Direct Mail/Direct Response: Communications that are designed to solicit a specific, immediate response by the target audience. This can be a single communication or a series. Quantifiable measurement, including the target audiences specific actions or behavior changes resulting solely from the sponsor’s communication, should be detailed in the summary. Submit one copy of the publication along with one-page summary.

28. Public Service Announcements: Audio or video productions of one minute or less distributed to radio or television stations, or print ads distributed to newspapers or magazines as non-paid public service announcements. Single productions or a series addressing the same issue may be submitted on a DVD or USB flash drive, or an actual copy of the print PSA must be submitted. The one-page summary should include documentation of results that support stated objectives.

Please note:  Entries in categories 29-35 must be written in their entirety or substantively by the entrant and not merely “pitched.”

29. Speeches: Submit text of speech along with one-page summary. Summary should include information on audience, purpose of speech, and any documented results against the stated objectives.

30. Feature Stories, Editorials, Op-Ed Columns: Submit text of feature or opinion article as well as documentation of publication and placement. The feature article should have been written by the practitioner and submitted and published through his/her efforts. The one-page summary should include target audience, measurable objectives and any documented results.

31. Advertorial: Paid advertising written as editorial matter to gain support for a product, issue, program or organization. Submit text of editorial matter and documentation of publication. The one-page summary should include target audience, measurable objectives and budget.

32. Research/Evaluation: The Institute for Public Relations will judge and present this award for research that provides a meaningful contribution to a public relations program where the research preceding the program was well-designed, where the program had measurable objectives, where measurement and evaluation were integrated into the program, and where the methodology was effective.  Methodology and key findings should be included in the entry, along with a one-page summary.

33. Web Sites (external, internal or extranets): Use of a Web site as part of a public relations program. Include screen grabs or copies of key pages to support your one-page summary. In addition, include the Web site address for external sites.

34. Internal Video: Video programs targeted toward internal audiences such as employees, members, etc.   Entrants should submit programs on a DVD or USB flash drive as a reasonable representation. The one-page summary should include the targeted audience and documentation of results that support stated objectives.

35. External Video: Video programs targeted primarily at external audiences, including b-roll packages and satellite media tours.  Entrants should submit programs on a DVD or USB flash drive as a reasonable representation. The one-page summary should include the targeted audience and documentation of results that support stated objectives.

Thoth Checklist

To improve your chances, be sure to go through this checklist prior to submitting your entry.

• Program took place in 2013.
Programs have an improved chance of winning if submitted near their completion, when results against initial objectives can be measured.

• Entered the most appropriate category.
In deciding which category is most appropriate, entrants should examine program objectives and target audiences. Judges will not move entries into other categories.

• Submitted each entry in a hardcover, three-ring binder.
Leave the binder cover and spine free of lettering, labels, drawings, etc.

  • The competition entry form should be page one of your binder. This applies to every program and component entry.
  • The next page of your entry should be the 100-word summary that outlines your program or component.  This applies to every program or component entry.
  • If you entered a Program category, the next two pages of your entry should be the two-page summary if it is a program category. It should include a description of research, planning, implementation and evaluation, in that order. Also in the summary include total budget, including information related to staffing or percentage of manpower and percentage of purchased media to overall expenses; the program’s geographic scope; and time frame or duration of the program.
  • If your entry is a component, page three of your entry should be a one- page summary and should address objectives, audiences, budget and, results, if available.  

• Provided a CD, DVD or USB flash drive containing the two-page program summary or one-page component summary; the 100-word summary of your entry (so we may best describe your entry if it receives an award); and a 300 DPI JPEG of your company, client and/or project logo(s).

• For program entries, incorporate supporting materials such as photographs, prints, slides, letters, scripts, storyboards, clippings and sample evaluation data. These items must fit into your binder. Sleeves may be used to hold odd-sized support materials such as folded posters, CDs, DVDs and USB flash drives. Advertising materials will be accepted if you can demonstrate that the advertising supplemented the public relations program and the advertising costs amounted to no more than one-third of the total program budget.

• For program entries, use labeled tabs to separate your binder into four sections (research, planning, implementation and evaluation) and include introductory or analytical statements at the beginning of each section followed by supporting documentation.

• If your entry documentation includes video, submit a copy on DVD or USB flash drive. You must prepare a one-page summary outlining the video’s contents and also label the DVD or USB flash drive with the name of the entry, the program title and award category.

• Submit entry with payment to arrive no later than Friday, June 20, 2014, at 5 p.m. Checks should be made payable to PRSA-NCC. American Express, Visa or MasterCard accepted.

Send entries to:
Attn: Thoth Award Competition
PRSA-NCC Chapter Office
10378 Democracy Lane, Suite A
Fairfax, VA 22030
703-691-9212

BEST OF SHOW

All program entry winners are automatically considered for special recognition as the “Best of Show.”
 

HAVE A QUESTION?

Email Thoth Awards Judging Chairs Amy Goodwin at agoodwin@jhmi.edu; or Jill Parker Landsman at jlandsman@nvar.com who will answer your questions or connect you with someone who can provide further guidance on preparing your Thoth entry.

 


 

2014 Thoth Awards Enty Form
Make copies of the form for multiple entries

Category Name:     
Category Number (note: be sure to include subcategory letter if applicable. IE: 2A or 2B)                                                                                  
Title of Entry:  
Name of organization for which this program was conducted:  
Name of assisting agency/agencies or counseling firm(s) if any:   
Indicate the individual’s name and/or company name that should be engraved on the award in the event that your entry wins:   
Name of the person authorized to submit this entry (and who will serve as contact regarding entry):     
Contact email address:  
Phones (office & cell):  
Business Name:  
Business Street Address:    
Business City/State/Zip:     
Are you a member of PRSA/NCC?  
If yes, enter PRSA member number (please refer to your member ID card or call the NCC office at 703.691.9212)     

I certify that this program was carried out entirely or in part between January 1, 2013 and December 31, 2013  Signature of entrant or representative:    

 

2014 Thoth Awards Entry Payment Form

Fees:
Early Bird: - must be received at the chapter office by 5:00 p.m. on May 23, 2014
PRSA-NCC Members: $120; $100 for subsequent entries
Non-NCC: $160 for all entries

Final Deadline - must be received at the chapter office by 5:00 p.m. on June 24, 2014.  Entries can also be posmarked on June 24.

PRSA-NCC Members: $160; $140 for subsequent entries
Non-NCC: $200 for all entries

Payment:
Mail entry with payment by Tuesday, June 24, 2014 to:

Attn: Thoth Awards
PRSA-NCC
10378 Democracy Lane, Suite A
Fairfax, VA  22030

Entry Fees may be paid by check made payable to PRSA-NCC or by credit card
(American Express, Visa, MasterCard)

Method of payment
indicate check or credit card
 ___    check      ___ credit card                
Total Amount to be billed $_________
Name on credit card (please print):  
Email address of cardholder (for receipt)  
Credt card number:  
Expiration date:  
Signature of cardholder: