The British Media Awards are over for another year, and we’re sure some of the winners are still nursing sore heads from the ceremony.
But their victories – and the achievements of every team that made it onto our judges’ shortlist this year – are worth sharing, since the reasons behind the wins provide clues about the trajectory of the wider media industry.
So here’s who’s won industry recognition at the British Media Awards this year, and the reasons behind some decisions our judges felt were especially worth highlighting.
Pioneer of the Year – Katie Vanneck-Smith
Chief customer officer and global managing director of Dow Jones Katie Vanneck-Smith only took the role in September of 2014, but has already redefined the brand.
As the industry grapples with the notion that being a big player isn’t enough to secure sustainability, Dow Jones has shifted its focus back to the individual consumer. That doesn’t mean the company is shrinking its ambitions, however, as the global expansion of the Wall Street Journal’s exclusive subscriber membership program WSJ+ demonstrates.
Initiatives like the expansion of the Customer Group, new collaborations with News Corp and an increased focus on video projects ensure that Dow Jones is blazing a trail to innovate new revenue models with Katie Vanneck-Smith at the helm
Media Company of the Year – Dennis Publishing
Dennis had a great year with both turnover and margin growth in 2015; the judges felt that Dennis was a company that was very clear about what it was good at and had diversified well around its strengths.
Launches of The Week Junior and Coach took successful existing platforms (The Week and Men’s Fitness) and looked for clever ways to extend the brand. There is a feeling of both innovation and pace within the company. Nothing stands still and their corporate culture clearly shone through in the entry.
Dennis now has an unusual corporate structure – with profits run for the benefit of a charity, The Heart of England Forest – but the underlying spirit that Felix Dennis brought to the business is still running through the DNA of the company he created.
In this category our judges had a really hard time picking a winner with the entry from The Drum also very strong. They would like to mention that, as a British company, how great it was to see The Drum expanding overseas and growing influence in America and Singapore.
Outstanding Contribution award – Alan Rusbridger
During his 20 year tenure as editor, Alan Rusbridger oversaw the growth of the Guardian from the ninth-largest newspaper in the UK to the third-largest news brand in the world. During that time he was instrumental in defending the Guardian from threats to its existence, from high-profile lawsuits to WikiLeaks, and undeniably helped define and promote the concept of ‘open journalism’.
Rusbridger, in concert with his team at the Guardian, also helped to pioneer many digital publishing endeavours which we now take for granted, in addition to delivering on the mission of liberal journalism with endeavours such as the phone-hacking scandal, Edward Snowden, and the Keep It In The Ground campaign.
The outstanding contribution to the British Media award, like all our awards at the BMAs, is about rewarding bravery and innovation in an industry that is changing rapidly. Nobody yet has the answers, but we feel it is important to reward those who take bold steps and who have undeniably changed the media landscape along the way.
Editorial Campaign of the Year
Judges said Grazia’s ‘Mind The Pay Gap campaign is a shining example of an important and innovative editorial endeavour. It took the needs of its audience – a need of which many of them were unaware – and brought it to widespread attention. More importantly, it had a tangible effect on the lives of its audience and represents an undeniable victory for the thousands of people who got involved as a direct result of Grazia’s campaign.
The judges were as impressed by the quality of the campaign as they were by the strategy behind it, which has strengthened and bolstered Grazia’s standing as a brand.
Silver: Dennis Publishing/Den of Geek: “Geeks vs. loneliness”
Bronze: Independent/Evening Standard: “#refugeeswelcome”
Commercial Campaign of the Year
Purple: Time Inc. UK: “Changing the Face of The British Army”
Silver: JCDecaux: “Jurassic World”
Bronze: Factory Media: “The Indestructibles”
Sales Team of the Year
Purple: DODS Group Plc Sales Team
Silver: Open Door Media Publishing – Investment Europe
Bronze: Centaur Media – The Profile Group Content Sales Team
Ad Tech Provider of the Year
Purple: Grapeshot – Grapeshot Advanced Keyword Technology
Silver: Captify – C3 – Search Intelligence powered advertising
Bronze: Unruly – UnrulyX
Print Product of the Year
Purple: Bauer Media – MOJO Magazine
Silver: Ascential – The Architectural Review
Bronze: The Drum – The Drum Magazine
App of the Year
Purple: Economist – Espresso
Silver: Reuters – Reuters TV
Bronze: The Guardian – The Guardian
Product Team of the Year
Purple: Time Inc. UK – The Lab
Silver: Dennis Publishing – Dennis Digital
Bronze: The Guardian – The Guardian Digital Development Team
Marketing Team of the Year
Purple: YOOX NET-A-PORTER– PORTER – Marketing Team
Silver: UBM EMEA – Safety & Health Expo
Bronze: Immediate Media – Subscriptions Marketing Team
Event of the Year
Purple: The Drum – Do It Day
Silver: Open Door Media Publishing – Funds Society Fund Selector Summit 2015
Bronze: Centaur Media – Festival of Marketing
Content Team of the Year
Purple: Guardian News & Media – Guardian Professional Networks
Silver: Startups.co.uk – Editorial team
Bronze: WGSN – WGSN Content
Purple: Centaur Media – Faye Bell
Silver: Startups.co.uk – Megan Dunsby
Bronze: Dennis Publishing – Nick Flood
Video Project of the Year
Purple: The Economist – Economist Films
Silver: VICE Media – VICE News – Europe or Die
Bronze: Dezeen – Future Makers
Website of the Year sponsored by Acquia
Purple: Ascential – Nursing Times Website
Silver: Telegraph Media Group – telegraph.co.uk
Bronze: WGSN – WGSN Influence Strategy
Digital Launch of the Year sponsored by Affino
Purple: Business Insider – Business Insider UK Launch
Silver: Retail Week – Retail Week Prospect
Bronze: Dennis Publishing – Alphr.com
Launch of the Year sponsored by Plural Strategy
Purple: Dennis Publishing – The Week Junior
Silver: Lions Festivals – Lions Innovation
Bronze: BMJ – Rethinking Student BMJ
Media Brand of the Year
Purple: Immediate Media – Radio Times
Silver: Dennis Publishing – The Week
Bronze: First News (UK) Ltd – First News
Technology Provider of the Year
Purple: Smartology – SmartMatch™
Silver: Affino – Single-source Media Business Platform
Bronze: Zapnito – Building branded expert knowledge networks
Best Commercial Use of Data – Sponsored by LiveIntent
Purple: Squawka – Match Day Data
Silver: Zoopla Property Group – AdReach
Bronze: Financial Times – The Financial Times reader engagement metric