The secret to winning a B2B Marketing Award
Looking for some inspiration while entering our B2B Marketing Awards? Well, we’ve got just that with an exclusive interview with twogether about their outstanding 21 wins over the past 4 years. Kavita Singh spoke with Alex Webber, marketing manager at twogether.
KS: Just this year, you won an award for a new category we started doing at our martech awards called "Best use of martech for brand building". What was the reaction from your team?
AW: It was huge! This was the first time you had released this award category, but it was also the first time we had entered that specific campaign into any awards. It was amazing to get the recognition, and there are a few reasons for our delight.
Firstly, we loved that you included a brand-building category during a time when marketers were reluctant to spend on brand campaigns. With more companies deciding to channel their budgets towards demand generation, this win demonstrates how the balance between brand and demand is key to success.
On top of that was the fact this award showed how much of a role martech has to play when it comes to brand building. Martech teams are usually quietly supporting brand building so to be able to get recognition for their usually unseen effort was amazing. Martech’s role is to manage the technology and identify opportunities for improvement, but it’s the combined knowledge of everyone involved that has made this win possible. Across our internal teams, as well as within O2 and their supporting teams all working together.
KS: What was the goal with that campaign and what was one key highlight?
O2s’ goal was to drive acquisitions, fame, differentiation, and consideration in the SMB market around their new brand narrative “We’re here to help your business flex”.
For us, this was a great opportunity to implement and enable new channels and technologies bringing a fresh perspective to the program. With the expansion of these new channels, we were able to tangibly track the success of the content and context of each element – ensuring that we enhanced the reach of the brand awareness activity.
This also meant that we were able to append lead data with the information needed for O2’s existing tech stack, not only transferring leads quickly but automatically activating nurture activity, based on the content of engagement.
KS: You also won for "Best use of martech in demand generation" The results were outstanding! What was your reaction to the results?
AW: The demand generation piece for us was a part of a much bigger picture of the martech support and integration we’ve been supporting O2 with over the last 24 months. So first and foremost, winning both categories was just brilliant because it just goes to show exactly why you need a balance between brand and demand generation to produce the best results.
The results were outstanding, and it goes to show you don’t have to be a specialist Martech agency to be effective and get award-winning results. Our team is working in a much bigger integrated model and working with the clients and working with the partners we’ve been able to get this holistic view of every piece of the puzzle to make the campaign work.
KS: You have won a total of 21 B2B Award wins over the last 4 years! Is there a specific award that stands out as being especially rewarding?
AW: Any recognition is truly humbling. The impact it has on the team and all our clients has been so rewarding.
Winning ‘Best Multichannel Campaign’ with KPMG was very special because at the time we had recently invested in our services as a fully integrated agency, and the ‘Changing Futures’ campaign used every single service and all the different channels in the most inventive ways possible. The campaign is still ongoing, having started back in 2018, and still generating amazing results today.
To receive recognition for that in such a competitive category where it’s hard to stand out and win the Gold was really special.
KS: Can you tell me about winning 'Agency of the year' twice and why you think you nabbed those specific awards?
AW: To be honest, the first time we won, it felt like we were the underdog. We called ourselves the biggest success you’ve never heard of. We were doing some incredible work, but no one knew about it, and we didn’t think we had any chance of winning.
We felt passionately about everything we were doing and truly believed that it was our time for people to hear more about it, and I think the judges picked up on that. We had such a strong story of growth and innovation but if I’m honest, I think we are still surprised as it was the first award we ever won - ‘Agency of the year’.
When we won the second one, we knew we had another incredible story to tell about our work since winning the previous award. I personally think we nabbed it because we had two fantastic years of redeveloping our agency proposition. We also developed our teams internally and we smashed client results.
KS: Can you tell me how the pandemic has shifted the company? Were there any shifts in terms of growth?
As the pandemic happened, there wasn’t a shift in our approach. It just made the need for our solutions a higher priority. We had to be that partner to lead the way for our clients. We had to decide whether we were going to take our foot off the pedal to protect ourselves or take it head-on as a challenge and be bold and deliver at an increased pace, which we definitely did.
Clients put their trust in us at a time when people were spending cautiously. So being #1 fastest growing agency says it all. We also used that revenue, and client wins, and we invested it into our talent and services. We increased our headcount to 22% which is an incredible achievement given the circumstances.
We’ve also seen the need and appetite to focus on innovation. There’s this terrifying stat that 44% of B2B marketers say they are going to struggle to help customers overcome digital fatigue. Our whole lives are online. Innovation for innovation’s sake doesn’t work. We’ve had to find new ways to engage audiences that have seen success that will continue for years to come.
KS: What are some top tips for highlighting your case study & campaign and making it stand out from other award entries?
AW: If you are proud of your campaign and have an authentic story to tell, and you have some incredible results to back it up, but you’re put off because you’re seeing all these ‘big dogs’ entering - don’t be. The judges want to read the most incredible stories, they want to see variety in your work, and what’s going on in the market. So don’t be put off from entering it, just because you see bigger names. We hadn’t won a single award, and then we won agency of the year.
But that being said, authenticity is key. We had a strong story to tell, a real one. A lot of the time, when I read award entries I see that people try to market their campaigns to marketers. These judges are at the top of their game, and they know when they’re being marketed to.
KS: We have our Awards submission coming out today! Are you entering?
AW: Of course we are! Last year, we didn’t enter awards at all. We gave our budgets to charities that we felt needed recognition more than we needed a title. As a marketer, it was a little hard to swallow. With the world around us, it was the right thing to do. This year, with the resilience of our teams and clients this year, we produced some amazing campaigns, which definitely deserve an entry.
What are you waiting for? Enter now for a chance to win a B2B Marketing Award! Last year saw some of the best work in B2B grab the trophies.
If you think you can fill those shoes with your own award-winning work, then we want you to submit and show the world exactly what you’re made of!