Let me put it out there right away. I GET why industry awards are important for those of us in the PR business.
They’re a stamp of approval from people who know a lot about PR. An honor that separates us from other agencies. Proof that somebody appreciates all those long hours and skipped lunches. A signal to prospective clients that those people at Matter know what they’re doing when it comes to PR.
I get all of that. But I’ll be honest: award submissions for Matter’s own work aren’t my favorite part of the job.
Here’s what I’d rather be doing. I’d rather be brainstorming story ideas that’ll yield coverage for a client. I’d rather be providing advice about the direction a client’s PR program should take. I’d rather be talking to a prospect about how Matter’s approach to PR could boost their business and sell more of their stuff.
My favorite “awards” aren’t given out at black-tie dinners.
I prefer the office high-five when a great New York Times article hits for a client. The excited shout from across the hall when a colleague lands an NPR interview. The celebratory beer when an interesting company decides to trust us with their business.
I like the banter on a client update call – the talk about the Red Sox or the lighthearted back-and-forth – that comes only with a comfort level achieved when the client is really satisfied with our work for them.
No framed certificate can bring the satisfaction of being part of a PR agency that’s growing quickly because of the good work we do for clients.
I think of the clients who served as enthusiastic references last week when I asked them to speak with a prospect.
“I’ll gladly be a reference any time. You guys are doing a great job,” said one.
“We LOVE Matter,” wrote another.
THOSE are the “awards” that make my job fun.