It is important to remember that the Image Awards program is a public relations competition. As such, it is the public relations aspect of the entry that will receive the greatest scrutiny by the judges. To this end, the judges first read and evaluate the summary accompanying the entry. Seventy percent of the scoring is based on the summary that sets out the reason and need for the development of the public relations program or tool, how it was implemented and the results. The judges then review the support materials for professionalism, innovation and design to score the remaining 30 percent of the entry.
The judging method allows the judges to concentrate on the following criteria required in each two-page summary:
Two-page Summary Requirements:
Research/Situation Analysis (10 points)
-Defining the Problem (5 pts.)
-Employed Research Methods (5 pts.)
Planning (20 points)
-Goal-Directed Strategic Thinking (5 pts.)
-S.M.A.R.T. Objectives Provided (5 pts.)
-Strategies & Tactics Distinguished (5 pts.)
-Audience Identification (5 pts.)
Implementation (15 points) Two-page Summary = 70 points
-Defining the Problem (5 pts.)
-Employed Research Methods (5 pts.)
-Program/Plan Creativity (5 pts.)
Evaluation (10 points)
-Objectives Met (5 pts.)
-Goals Met (5 pts.)
Budget (15 points)
-Budget Documentation (5 pts.)
-Budget Justification (10 pts.)
Support Material (30 points)
When writing your two-page summary please reference the Judge’s Judging Rubric starting page 12.Division A
Public Relations Programs – A public relations program is defined as a broad-based communications endeavor using two or more public relations tools.
1A. Community Relations – Any program that improves the organization’s image in the community through support of charitable or service activities. The program can be limited to specific segments of the community and usually is aimed at improving specific aspects of community life. Basically, this includes community “good neighbor” or community betterment programs.
2A. Public Service – Any program developed to inform about issues of public concern. These programs often deal with larger issues that require public knowledge and action. Public service programs usually are aimed at educating the public and solving public problems.
3A. Institutional – Any program that creates a public image for the organization. Typically designed to generate support for and awareness of the organization’s mission, values, programs, plans or activities.
4A. Public Information – Any program developed solely to inform or influence target audiences through use of the news media. This could include news conferences, special tours or informational programs.
5A. Crisis Communication – Any program developed and/or implemented to handle a disaster or emergency. These programs outline potential effects of the problem, as well as the plans, materials and budgets allocated to develop and implement the program and evaluate its effectiveness.
6A. Internal – Any program developed to communicate with internal publics such as employees, shareholders, association members, etc.
7A. Promotional/Marketing – Any program developed to promote, publicize, introduce or create an identity for a specific product, service or idea. These programs are generally developed within a marketing framework and often include a purchase or user acceptance of a specific product or service among their objectives.
8A. Public Affairs – Any program directed toward government action or activities such as legislative activities, political campaigns, government affairs or relations with public bodies or regulatory agencies. In the broadest sense, this category includes everything meant by “lobbying” plus direct political activities.
9A. Integrated Marketing – Any program incorporating public relations strategies and tactics as part of an integrated campaign and demonstrating effective integration with other marketing/communication disciplines.
10A. Reputation Management – Any program or strategy developed to enhance or improve the reputation of an organization with its publics, either proactively or in response to an issue or event.
11A. Special Events – Any in-person event developed to commemorate a special occurrence, observance or one-time activity. These could include anniversary celebrations, open houses, dedications, awards ceremonies, parties or receptions.
12A. Virtual Special Event – Any program developed to commemorate a special event, conference, observance, educational opportunity or one-time activity that took place virtually. This event must have been shared using online video broadcasting, which is the distribution of video and/or audio content to an audience over the web or via live streaming, in real-time.
13A. Other – Any broad-based public relations program using two or more public relations tools that is not included in the above-listed categories.
Collateral of Public Relations – Public relations collateral is any material, printed or digital, used for a public relations purpose, either standing alone or as part of a public relations program. It includes written and electronic material and specialty items. In the case of regularly produced printed, or digitally printed materials, such as newsletters or magazines, one to three issues should be included in the support material.
1B. Annual Report – Printed or electronic internal and external reports.
2B. Brochure – Any printed folded or bound publication or digital PDF or flip-book publication produced for a single specific purpose.
3B. Magazine – Any periodical or regular publication, which may include articles of one page in length or longer. Publication is usually 16 or more pages in length and includes articles that are more in-depth than a newsletter.
4B. Newsletter – Any printed or digital report, that is produced, published and distributed on a regular basis by a business, institution, or other organization, that presents information and news to people with a specific interest in the organization or subject.
5B. News Release or Pitch – Any document, prepared statement or email communication released to the media as a news item, article or feature story on behalf of a sponsoring person or organization.
6B. Specialty Item – Any gift, premium, novelty or physical token used to convey an impression, make a point, establish an image or achieve a public relations objective. Examples include calendars, posters, promotional items and other novelties.
7B. Other – Any printed or digital public relations tool that does not fit into the above listed categories or Division C categories. Examples include postcards, rack cards and invitations.
Digital Tools of Public Relations – This division includes any online, audio or audio/visual presentation or program that serves a public relations objective. Audio, video or electronic presentations should be submitted with a copy of the script or storyboard, if available.
1C. Online Audience Engagement – The process of encouraging people to be interested or actively involved in your organization’s content. Examples include using blogging or microblogging, podcasts, crowdsourcing, influencer campaigns or similar mechanisms.
2C. Digital Promotion – Edited, finished-product display tools such as: online media kits, email marketing, e-promotions, PSA, ad placement/sponsored ads, boosted posts, digital marketing and paid content.
3C. Social Media – Any program or portion of a campaign developed for one or more social media channels, including Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, SnapChat, Twitter, Tik Tok, etc.
4C. Video – Internal – Any video that presents information to an organization’s internal audience. Examples include orientation programs, meeting openers, news shows, company updates, training, webinars, etc.
5C. Video – External – Any video that presents information to an organization’s external stakeholders with an intent to promote, publicize, introduce or create an identity for a specific product, service or idea. These tools generally are developed within a marketing framework and often include a purchase or user acceptance of a specific product or service among their objectives.
6C. Video – Public Service – Any video presented to inform or educate an organization’s external audiences on an issue of public concern.
7C. Video – Institutional – Any video used to support the public image of an organization. This tool typically is designed to generate awareness and support of the organization’s mission, values, programs, plans or activities.
8C. Website – Any external or internal website created to achieve a public relations objective.
9C. Other – Any digital, online, audio, audio/visual or electronic tool that is not included in the above listed categories such as a video news release, presentation, app, landing page, etc.
Student Projects in Public Relations – This division is restricted to entries submitted by full- or part-time students enrolled at accredited Florida universities or colleges. Student projects in public relations include printed or digital materials and campaigns created for public relations purposes, whether assigned for a course or completed outside the classroom. A photocopy of the entrant’s valid student ID must be attached to the entry from.
1D. News Release or Pitch – Any document, prepared statement or email communication released to the media as a news item, article or feature story on behalf of a sponsoring person or organization.
2D. Public Service Announcement – Any video or audio spot one minute or less in length that is designed to inform or educate an organization’s external audiences on an issue or event. Script must be included.
3D. Public Relations Campaign – Any broad-based communications endeavor that uses two or more public relations tools. Campaigns can improve or create an organization’s image, inform the public on issues of concern, handle disaster situations or communicate with internal audiences.
4D. Digital Communication – Any audio, video or other electronic tool used to achieve a public relations objective. Can include e-mail, video, website, presentation, etc.
5D. Social Media – Any program or portion of a campaign developed for one or more social media channels, including Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, SnapChat, Twitter, Tik Tok, etc.
6D. Special Event – Any event developed to commemorate an occasion either in-person or virtually. Special event examples include observances or one-time activities, such as anniversary celebrations, open houses, dedications, awards ceremonies, parties or receptions. Must be held live or live-streamed.
Rules for Entry
- Entries must be submitted in the most appropriate division and category.
- Entries for the same project may not be entered in more than one category in the same year; however, pieces from an entry may be entered into other categories. Entries that win Image Awards may not be re-entered in subsequent years unless there has been substantial change in the entry.
- Some part of the entry must have taken place between January 1, 2020 and Feb. 15, 2021.
- Entries must be submitted electronically in five separate files (Two-Page Summary .pdf, Support Material .pdf, Organizational Overview .pdf, 50-Word Summary .pdf, and one .jpg). The titles of all files should include the name of the entry, division and category.
- The first PDF, titled with the name of the entry, division, category and the word “Entry,” will be the two-page summary.
- The summary must address each of the following: Research/Situation Analysis; Planning; Implementation; Evaluation and Budget.
- The summary cannot exceed two typewritten pages.
- Summary must be created in Word using Times New Roman font.
- Type size must be a minimum of ten-point, one and a half-spaced lines (used to be double-spaced), with .75-inch margin (used to be one-inch margin) around the summary.
The second PDF, titled with name of entry, division, category and the word “Support,” contains materials that support or substantiate information provided in the summary.
- The first page of the support material PDF should be a table of contents page indicating information about the files contained within.
- News clippings, photos, publications and copies of materials used in the implementation of the program/tool are pertinent.
- Photographs may be incorporated into the “Support” .pdf to represent support materials not available electronically.
- Examples of audio-visual materials and video coverage may be submitted separately to support any entry in the Public Relations Programs division.
Entries in the Audio/Visual/Online Division should be submitted as electronic files titled with the entry name, division and category.
In this document, briefly list company background and PR staff size to better acquaint the judges with the submitting organization.
50-Word Summary Attachment
A 50-word summary of the entry must accompany your submission. Information provided in this document will be used when announcing winning entries.
The final attachment needed to submit your entry is a JPEG image representing your entry. This will be used in addition to your 50-word summary in the event your entry wins an award.
Payment for the entry fees can be submitted online or by check. See payment information on the Chapter Entry Form.
- Division and category are noted.
- Some part of the entry must have taken place between January 1, 2019 and February 29, 2020.
- Summary is no longer than two pages with 1.5 spacing and .75 margin around each page.
- Minimum type size is 10 points set as Times New Roman font style.
- Brief organizational overview is included as separate PDF file.
- All support materials, A/V and electronic requirements are met.
- 50-word summary is included as separate PDF file.
- Name(s) to be used on award are specified and properly spelled.
The judges reserve the right to reclassify entries if deemed necessary.
- Entries that do not follow all the Rules for Entry may be disqualified.
- No part of the entry may be submitted after the deadline.
- Fees for disqualified entries will not be refunded.
All entries are due by Feb. 15, 2021. Entries must be submitted at www.fpraimage.org. To ensure fairness to all entrants, no exceptions will be allowed.
Awards will be presented during a ceremony in April. Winners will be notified in advance so they can plan their attendance.
Award of Distinction
Presented to entries that meet the standards of excellence set by a panel of judges.
May be presented to the top-scoring entry in each category if the entry meets predetermined criteria of excellence set by the judges.
Presented by judges for an outstanding entry that achieves maximum results while using a minimum amount of money.
Grand Image Award
Presented to the best Image Award-winning entry in Divisions B, C and D.
Grand All Image Award
Presented to the best Image Award-winning entry in Division A.
Judging Process & Rubric
FPRA has recently revamped its Image and Golden Image judge scoring process to provide more specificity. The new judging instrument requires specific criteria to be met to earn an increasing level of points.
Because additional information is being asked to be addressed by entrants, the one-inch margin rule is changing to a .75 margin and the double-spacing requirement has changed to 1.5 spacing. These changes will provide entrants with the additional space needed to cover the new criteria outlined in the provided rubric. New requirements include the following:
- Goals are asked to be identified.
- Strategies and tactics should be provided.
- Audience identification should address psychographic and demographic information.
- Communication channels used to reach target audience should be included.
- Sequencing of events (or timeline) addressed within implementation section.
- Assigned responsibilities for plan execution should be addressed within implementation phase.
- Inclusion of communication messages used to reach identified target audiences.
For specifics related to these new judging metrics, please consult the following judging rubric.
The following rubric is grounded in our profession’s established body of knowledge. Sources used to develop rubric include the “Cutlip & Center’s Effective Public Relations, Eleventh Edition,” the “APR Study Guide from the Universal Accreditation Board” and “Public Relations and the Power of Creativity: Strategic Opportunities, Innovation and Critical Challenges.”
Each entry will be scored by a team of three judges. Judging teams will be assigned to the same set of entries within any given Division and Category to ensure consistency and fairness. All appointed Image judges must have won an Image or Golden Image Award and it is strongly encouraged that they be Accredited. Judges will score each entry independently and then work as a team for final award selection/confirmation.
JUDGING SCORING PROCESS
All Image entries must be submitted via FPRA’s online Image Awards platform to be considered as an official Image Award entry. Through this platform, judges will score entries by answering a series of questions that correspond with the provided rubric. Based on their answers, the system will assign a score to each section being answered. These scores and award assignments, based on the judge’s answers, will then be provided to the judging teams to review and verify.
Research/Situation Analysis Section (10 Pts.)
Research is the formal and/or informal gathering of information to understand a situation, check assumptions and perceptions, define the problem and publics and determine the appropriate course of action.
DEFINING THE PROBLEM (5 points)
Poor The purpose of the project is not stated. (0 points)
Fair Purpose of project is stated, but background information provided is insufficient to fully understand the scope of the situation. (2 points)
Good Purpose of the project is stated and defined. The situation’s history and forces operating on it were made clear. However, the entities involved or affected were not made clear or vice versa. (3 points)
Very Good The purpose of the project was provided and defined but should have been more concise. However, all information needed to understand the situation was provided. This includes history, forces operating on the matter and all those involved or affected were identified. (4 points)
Outstanding The purpose of the project was concise and clearly stated and defined. A collection of all that is known about the situation, its history, operating forces, and those involved or affected internally and externally were provided.
EMPLOYED RESEARCH METHODS (5 points)
Poor The summary did not address either primary (research you conduct yourself) or secondary (research that has already been compiled) methods used to gather information needed for effective planning. (0 points)
Fair The summary did mention that research was conducted but did not address what type of research was done. (2 points)
Good Either primary or secondary methods of research was identified for collecting data for planning purposes. (3 points)
Very Good Both primary and secondary research methods were identified for data collection and planning purposes. (4 points)
Outstanding The summary demonstrated that both primary and secondary research were conducted and were properly identified. Further, the results gleaned from the research presented useful information for the planning process. (5 points)
Planning Section (20 Points)
Among the planning elements are audience identification and setting goals and objectives based on research findings. Objectives should be specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and time specific. The stated goals and objectives should address the identified problem or issue. The planning section should distinguish goals, objectives, strategies and tactics. In addition, the program’s/project’s goal(s) should align with organizational mission and goals.
GOAL-DIRECTED STRATEGIC THINKING (5 points)
Goals are longer-term, broad, global and future statements of “being.”
Poor No goal(s) was provided, or goal(s) was provided but did not provide a clearly defined outcome. (0 points)
Good Goal(s) was stated and provided clear direction to address the identified problem/issue/opportunity. Unable to determine, though, if the stated goal(s) makes sense within the context of the organization’s broader vision, mission and operational goals, as this information was not provided. (3 points)
Outstanding Goal(s) was stated and provided clear direction to addressing the identified problem/issue/opportunity. The goal(s) makes sense within the context of the organization’s broader vision, its mission and its operational goals. (5 points)
S.M.A.R.T. OBJECTIVES PROVIDED (5 points)
*S.M.A.R.T. objectives are Specific, Measurable, Achievable (or Attainable), Relevant and Time Specific.
Poor Objectives contain only one or no elements* outlined above. (0 points)
Fair Objectives contain two elements* outlined above. (2 points)
Good Objectives contain three elements* outlined above. (3 points)
Very Good Objectives contain four elements* outlined above. (4 points)
Outstanding Objectives contain all the elements* outlined above. (5 points)
STRATEGIES & TACTICS DISTINGUISHED (5 points)
Poor Neither strategies nor tactics were distinguished for accomplishing the stated objectives. (0 points)
Fair Strategies and tactics were stated, but either the stated strategies and/or tactics were incorrectly identified (submitter did not demonstrate an understanding of strategies and/or tactics). (2 points)
Good Strategies were correctly distinguished for accomplishing the stated objectives, but not tactics or vice versa. (3 points)
Very Good Strategies and tactics were correctly distinguished for accomplishing the stated goal(s) and objectives. (4 points)
Outstanding Strategies and tactics were correctly distinguished for accomplishing the stated goal(s) and objectives. Strategies and/or tactics demonstrated a high level of creativity and/or innovation. (5 points)
AUDIENCE IDENTIFICATION (5 Points)
Poor Audience identification was not addressed. (0 points)
Fair Audience(s) was identified, and either psychographic (opinions, beliefs, attitudes, values, etc.) or demographic information was provided to give a better understanding of the identified audience(s). (2 points)
Good Audience(s) was identified. Both psychographic and demographic information were given to better understand the varying needs of these groups. (3 points)
Very Good Audience(s) was identified. Both psychographic and demographic information were given to better understand the varying needs of these groups. Appropriate communication channels/vehicles for reaching the target audience(s) were identified. (4 points)
Outstanding Audience(s) was identified. Both psychographic and demographic information were given to better understand the varying needs of these groups. Interests of influential institutions, groups and individuals were assessed, as needed. Appropriate communication channels/vehicles for reaching the target audience(s) were identified. (5 points)
Implementation Section (15 Points)
The implementation section outlines the action and communication employed for achieving the stated goal(s) and objectives. How and when the plan’s key message(s) were communicated should be addressed. These message(s) should work to motivate the receiver’s (identified target audience) interest, as determined by research, and cause a response (goal directed). Within this section, judges should be given enough information to understand the sequence of events (timeline) and assigned responsibilities for plan execution.
SEQUENCE OF EVENTS/TIMELINE (5 points)
Poor Sequencing of events (a timeline of activities) employed during the implementation phase was not identified. (0 points)
Good Plan addressed the sequence of events (a timeline of the activities) employed during the implementation phase. (3 points)
Outstanding Plan addressed the sequence of events (a timeline of the activities) employed during the implementation phase and outlined assigned responsibilities for plan execution. (5 points)
EFFECTIVENESS OF PLAN MESSAGING (5 points)
Poor No communication message(s) was provided for the situation, time, place and audience(s). (0 points)
Fair Communication message(s) for one of the identified target audience, not all, was provided. (2 points)
Good Communication message(s) for all identified target audiences was provided. (3 points)
Very Good Communication message(s) for all identified target audiences was provided and it was demonstrated that the message(s) was disseminated via channels used by the target audiences. (4 points)
Outstanding Communication message(s) for all identified target audiences was provided. It was demonstrated that the message(s) was disseminated via channels used by the target audiences and motivated the reciever to act/respond to the message(s). (5 points)
PROGRAM/PLAN CREATIVITY (5 points)
Demonstration of creativity in public relations may include, but is not limited to, the following:
- Program/project messaging is original and adaptive, new and functional
- Demonstration of originality and effectiveness
- Innovative ways of sending messages whose content is unconventional yet adaptable
- Sensitivity to problems (recognizing that several problems exist where it may appear to some that only one problem exits)
- Succeeded in earning trust, adding value changing the attitude, behavior and/or beliefs of the company’s/organization’s publics
- Use of visual storytelling vehicles
- Use of unexpected and unconventional strategies, tactics and/or tools
- Making everyday life more meaningful, simple, joyful and/or easier
- Conceptual blending – a campaign that aims to create a new space where the target group is very much aware of the fact that the campaign is for the good of the company/organization, but still aims to create a difference for the target group as well.
Point Value = 5 Did the project demonstrate creativity?
No (0 points)
Yes, there was demonstration of some level of creativity. (2 points).
I was impressed with the demonstrated level of creativity. (3 points).
I was very impressed with the demonstrated level of creativity (5 points).
“Very impressed” is defined by answering the following question. “Did the entry’s level of creativity have the ‘big idea’ factor?” Note: Creativity is still a vague concept for the public relations field. However, findings show that creative campaigns need to send messages that are original and adaptive, new and functional and potentially useful. The noted list above attempts to identify some, and is not considered all inclusive, of the characteristics that help to define creativity in the public relations profession.
Evaluation Section (10 Pts.)
The evaluation section determines if goals and objectives of the entrant’s program or project were met and the extent to which the results or outcomes of the program’s/project’s have been accomplished. This section is meant to answer the question “How well did the entrant do?”
OBJECTIVES MET (5 pts.)
Poor The evaluation of the program/project did not meet any of the stated objectives. or no objectives were provided to evaluate against. (0 points)
Fair The evaluation of the program/project met some of the stated objectives.
Good The evaluation of the program/project met all the stated objectives. (3 points)
Very Good The evaluation of the program/project met all the stated objectives and the results were well documented. (4 points)
Outstanding The evaluation of the program/project exceeded the stated objectives and the results were well documented. (5 points)
GOALS MET (5 points)
Poor The entry did not meet the stated goal(s) or goals were not provided
Good The evaluation of the program/project demonstrated that inroads were made to meeting the stated goal(s). (3 points)
Outstanding The evaluation of the program/project demonstrated that the stated goal(s) was achieved, or the problem solved. (5 points)
Budget (15 pts.)
To properly assess an award-winning program, all costs associated with the project/entry must be identified, either in dollar figures or the percentage/ratio of cost to the department’s or organization’s overall budget. This includes staff time and in-kind contributions, if applicable. The primary purpose for budget documentation, is to demonstrate why the submitted program/project equates to a worthwhile investment.
BUDGET DOCUMENTATION (5 points)
Poor No budget information was included. (0 points)
Fair Budget numbers (dollar figures or percentages/ratios) were included but no additional information or explanation of how budget was utilized was provided. (2 points)
Good Budget numbers (dollar figures or percentages/ratios) were included and itemized, per utilization, but did not include staff time or vice versa. (3 points)
Very Good Detailed budget information (presented in dollar figures or percentages/ratios) and staff time were included. The program/project did not exceed budget. (4 points)
Outstanding Detailed budget information (presented in dollar figures or percentages/ratios) and staff time were included. The program/project did not exceed budget. Or it came under budget and/or utilized funds in an exceedingly creative way. (5 points)
BUDGET JUSTIFICATION (10 points)
Demonstrated Return on Investment (ROI) = 10 Point Scale
A return on investment was demonstrated (a comparison of the program’s/project’s overall cost to the return received as a result of the implemented program or executed project)
ROI demonstration methods may include, but are not limited to, the following:
- Increased sales or usage of service achieved
- Comparing baseline analytics (web and social media) with analytics following program/project completion
- Increase in social media engagement and following increase
- Sentiment analysis of media mentions, before, during and after program program/project completion
- Survey result comparisons (benchmark data vs. follow-up survey data)
- Donated services quantified (if applicable)
- Costs comparisons to industry standards were made (if able and appropriate)
- Higher ranking for keywords achieved through comparison of benchmark data
- Increased website traffic using baseline data for comparison
- Increase in subscriptions (newsletters, email signups, etc.)
- Industry or local award given to business or professional associated with project
Did the project demonstrate an impressive ROI?
No (0 points)
I believe the noted return on investment was reasonable and justified the cost (time, money and other resources) employed to achieving the end outcome(s). (4 points)
I was impressed with the demonstrated ROI. (7 points)
I was very impressed with the demonstrated ROI*. (10 points)
*Triggers Judges’ Award Consideration
- “Impressive” is defined by answering the following question. “Did the entry’s ROI have the ‘wow factor’?” Only entries that exceed their stated objectives by what the judge considers to be a wide margin should be considered for a “yes” level response. Judges have the latitude to determine what they believe to be considered an “impressive” ROI.
- “Reasonable” is defined as what should be considered an expected gain for resources exchanged to achieve a desired goal/outcome.
Support Material (30 pts.)
This section should contain the materials that support or substantiate information provided in the two-page summary. An effective support material section works to quickly summarize the program/project entry for the reviewing judges.
3 points can be earned for a “yes” response for questions 2-11.
- No support material was provided.
- The support material section included a table of contents. (3 points)
- The support material was presented in an easy to follow format. (3 points)
- Research documentation (i.e. findings) were included with support material. (3 points)
- Support material reflected the implementation of the program’s/project’s strategies. (3 points)
- Support material reflected the implementation of the program’s/project’s tactics. (3 points)
- Representations of the program’s/project’s printed and/or digital content (tools) was included with the support material. (3 points)
- The support material reflected noted budgetary items. (3 points)
- The support material was professional looking. (3 points)
- The support material’s graphics supported the program’s/project’s key messaging. (3 points) OR, if graphics are not applicable, the answer the following:
The support material’s tools supported the program’s/project’s key messaging.
- The support material was creative and/or innovative. (3 points)