Media Research Awards 2020: BBC wins Grand Prix
Thinkbox, MediaCom, Reach Solutions and Wavemaker were among the winners of the sixth annual awards from Mediatel
World-class research innovation was celebrated on Wednesday (19 Feb) as the winners of Mediatel's 2020 Media Research Awards were announced.
This year BBC World Service led the winners, taking home both the Grand Prix prize and Best International Media Research Project for its entry 'Fake News and the Ordinary Citizen'.
The entry stood out as "remarkable", the judges said, succeeding in drawing the eye to an aspect of fake news that is frequently overlooked: the role played by the public in its proliferation.
"Its findings make essential reading and have implications around the world," said judge Paul Kennedy, research director, Rajar. "It was a brave, ambitious and relevant project, and is a worthy, timely and very appropriate winner."
The international broadcaster was also awarded Best Use of Data Sets for its project '426 million: The making of the BBC's Global Audience Measure'.
The judges praised the entry for its "sophistication and scope" - which delivered a cross platform single customer view for a "whopping" 240 countries.
TV marketing body Thinkbox also won in multiple categories - first, in the Best Custom Media Research Project - Trade Body category for 'A Matter of Time: Understanding the short and long of TV ads'.
The judges praised the work for revealing the clear differences in how short and long ads work, and the need for both - which, the judges noted, is good news for all AV players.
Later, Thinkbox also took home Media Owner/Trade Body of the Year.
"As the media industry goes through so much rapid change, Thinkbox drives industry attitudes and perceptions, showing innovation in their approach and clarity and focus in the way they communicate their work," said judge David Brennan, founder, Media Native.
"Thinkbox has shown all those qualities consistently since they first burst onto the scene more than 12 years ago and they continue to set the pace."
Meanwhile, due to the volume of high quality entries in the category, Best Custom Media Research Project - Media Owner gave out Bronze, Silver and Gold prizes this year.
Channel 4 took home Bronze for 'Mirror on the Industry: How diverse and inclusive is TV advertising in 2019', while UKTV and MTM together took Silver for 'Predicting Consumer TV Journeys of the Future'.
However, it was Reach Solutions and house51 who won Gold in this category for their entry: 'The Empathy Delusion'.
The judges described the submission as "standout" and an "excellent example" of a provocative initiative designed to create debate and challenge conventional wisdom.
"It delivered on all of its objectives and returned great ROI - it really got people talking about how well we understand consumers," said judge Belinda Beeftink, research director, IPA.
In the Best Custom Media Research Project - Agency category, MediaCom claimed the prize for its submission 'Game Changers', which focused on the 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup.
"The team uncovered huge misconceptions about the preferences of women’s football fans and highlighted the potential impact of this in terms of the approach to both content and advertising," said judges, adding that they unanimously agreed MediaCom was a "brilliant" winner.
Elsewhere, OMD UK and Ipsos won Excellence in Measuring Effectiveness of a Media Campaign for 'Christmas planning, Then and Now'.
"What I loved about this was how OMD UK created a really successful virtual circle – where the research was used to not only evaluate past activity but set up a framework for planning and measuring future activity," said judge Denise Turner, insight director, Newsworks.
"The solution, which used Ipsos's Mediacell technology, also provided tangible evidence that fed into campaign planning, helping to deliver positive business results for Google Home."
The Outstanding Data Communication category was won by Magnetic for its submission 'Pay Attention: Magazines' Role in the Modern Media Mix'.
Describing the project - which was at the heart of a wider campaign - as "innovative and eye-catching" in its approach, the judges noted that the magazine industry came together to generate real buzz around the research.
Meanwhile, the prize for Media Agency of the Year was taken home by the team at Wavemaker.
"Wavemaker's accomplishments were striking and various," said judge Jonny Protheroe, head of market insights UK at Google.
"We were impressed by the team's track record of successful pitch support and growing revenues, whilst also developing their people via an exchange programme and supplementary roles."
Finally, the Rising Star award - a new award for 2020, celebrating a media researcher with less than five years' experience - was won by Katherine Nicholls from Natives
"The Natives research team is only three strong but it’s small and mighty, having delivered over 40 research projects in 4 years," said chair of the judges and founder of Research the Media, Richard Marks.
"Katherine's contribution has been nothing short of outstanding. From writing algorithms to mentoring students, or creating large-scale surveys and supporting colleagues, she stood out in a shortlist of incredible quality."
Commenting on the overall standard of 2020's competitors, Greg Grimmer, CEO, Mediatel Group, said: “The innovation on display at today’s awards mark the UK out as a world leader in media research.
“A huge congratulations to all of the winners, and indeed everyone shortlisted – the quality of submissions remains extraordinarily high. Indeed, it is the intellect and creativity of problem solving put on display that makes hosting these awards such a pleasure.”
In 2019 the winners were led by Thinkbox, which won the Grand Prix along with Best Custom Media Research Project - Trade Body for its entry 'Profit Ability: the business case for advertising'.