Veterinary practices, industry marketers and PR agencies can showcase their PR campaigns by entering this year’s Veterinary Marketing Association (VMA) PR Award.

The aim of the award is to recognise the value media and public relations can add to the marketing mix, according to award sponsor, Splash Communications. 

Last year’s joint winners were Bayer Animal Health and multi-branch practice, White Cross Vets.

Co-founder of Splash Communications Jane Manning said: “Bayer’s hugely successful campaign, Be Lungworm Aware: Slime Watch, was promoted by joint agencies Pegasus and Markettiers4dc.

“The campaign by White Cross Vets and its agency Candid PR reached national coverage when a foul-mouthed parrot was found and taken to its Guiseley practice. 

“Both campaigns generated television, radio and online coverage, as well as national and regional press.  

“The White Cross Vets campaign, which reached an audience of more than 3.7 million people and resulted in the parrot being reunited with its owner live on ITV, demonstrates what can be achieved with the right approach, even on more limited budgets,” she added.

Justin Phillips, marketing manager at White Cross Vets, said as soon as he heard the parrot’s penchant for swearing he knew they could combine White Cross Vets’ compassion and concern for the parrot and its owner with a level of humour that would appeal to the media.

“Within a few hours we were able to plan and execute a campaign to maximise positive coverage and exposure across every type of media – both regionally and nationally,” he added.

The PR award is given to the company, organisation or veterinary practice that has delivered the most innovative and effective PR campaign during the previous year, as judged by a panel of industry professionals.

This can be a single “one-off” event or article, or a sustained campaign over a given period.

The winner and two highly commended entries will be announced at the VMA Awards at 12 noon on March 13, 2015, at The Lancaster London hotel.

Deadline for entries is January 30, 2015.

Further information on the awards and ticket application forms are available at the VMA’s website www.vma.org.uk or by telephoning 0844 561 6157.

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