How Much Do You Want an Award?

Sometimes I wonder why TV news keeps showing me Hollywood celebrities who lecture me on how to prevent cyberbullying, reduce plastic waste, and promote sustainable economic development across Central Asia. I assume that most film stars learned to dance, sing, and pull funny faces instead of studying the implications of endogenous growth theory for climate change modeling. But then I remember I am being silly, and that celebs can pretend to be experts on everything because (1) they are good at pretending, and (2) their natural attractiveness is reinforced by mind-bogglingly large marketing budgets. That is why I never read, see or listen to something just because it won an award. Literally everyone who has worked in the creative arts for more than three months has won an award at some stage during their career. The awards your teachers gave you at school were meant to encourage you to adopt habits that would help you succeed in adult life, but the awards they give you in adult life are just shameless attempts to boost revenues by persuading the ill-informed to buy more of the stuff you make. The only exception to this occurs when nobody wants to buy anything you make, irrespective of how good it is, and no matter how much you market it. RAFM professionals know all about the latter.

A Commsrisk reader recently wrote to complain about a particular business, and the (many) awards issued by one of their magazines. A representative of the magazine first contacted the reader by LinkedIn…

Hi [deleted] Magazine is soon to shortlist for our Telecom Awards. We have been pointed in your direction as a potential nominee, if you would like to hear more do let me know.

The next message from the magazine said a lot about the popularity of the awards, but nothing about the reasons why the recipient had been shortlisted for one them.

The 2019 Telecom Awards will honour and reward everyone who has had a positive influence and impact, within the industry, over the past 12 months. An essential industry to every business market and sector, we here at [deleted] Magazine believe it is essential that the innovators and industry juggernauts be furnished with the opportunity to receive recognition for their efforts. A key part of what we do is getting in touch with firms and individuals who we think need to be aware – market leaders, innovators etc. You have come up on our radar during this process – hence we wanted to invite you to form part of our shortlist. [Deleted] is a monthly publication, read by a worldwide network of CEOs, directors and other top-level professionals as well as investment professionals, spanning an array of industries and sector. With a global audience of over 130,000, our engaged and established readership stretches from around the globe. It’s a great platform for recognising and rewarding success! If you’re happy to be considered, please advise the best email address and we will send some further details across.

This message was obviously written by a Brit, despite the grammatical errors. Further instructions were then sent by email.


DEADLINE: 22nd April 2019

Thank you for accepting your nomination in the [deleted] Telecom Awards 2019!

Over the next few weeks our in house research team will be compiling a case file for submission to the judging panel in order to determine who will be successful in this years awards.

At this time we would like to give you the opportunity to provide supporting evidence to help us build your case file. By clicking the button below you will be taken to a short survey – compatible with PC / Tablet / Phone – with some standard questions we would like you to answer. Completing this survey is entirely optional and not doing it will not impact your nomination in any way.

A second email asked for ‘supporting evidence’ again, still without explaining why the nomination had been given in the first place.

I can now confirm that you have been shortlisted for the Telecom Awards 2019, proudly hosted by [deleted] Magazine.

Moving forward, you are encouraged to provide supporting materials and information via our optional survey. This is the opportunity for you to provide any information you’d like our panel to take into consideration when assessing [deleted]’s case file. We would also be happy to speak with you over the phone if this is preferable.

This is completely optional as we appreciate everyone is busy! Our in-house research experts will also begin preparations for your case file this year within the coming weeks.

We expect our panel to review this years’ shortlist, and to have the results for this years’ awards in April.

This nomination proved to be a winner! The text of the congratulatory email follows.

I hope you are well.

Following on from your recent nomination acceptance in the Telecom Awards 2019, the judging panel have made their final decisions and I am delighted to inform you of the outcome.

To confirm, [deleted] has been awarded:


What happens next?

At this stage we are just about to commence work on our annual celebratory magazine and I do hope you will consider being part of that!

The celebratory magazine will be digitally distributed to our dedicated readership comprising over 130,000 top tier professionals from around the globe, and will also be hosted on the [deleted] website which will be publicly live to ensure a steady stream of web traffic and can be viewed 24/7 regardless of time zone and location. If you would like a full breakdown of our readership please feel free to let me know.

We do have a selection of commercial packages available if you were looking to promote your award on a larger scale. Each of our promotional packages are designed to help you share the news of your success by using our platform and also in your own marketing campaigns.

Please take your time to review the options we have available if you do have any questions regarding the items please feel free to contact me – Visual examples of each item can be viewed HERE.

Free celebration items

Copy of the official press release
Dedicated page in the A-Z directory on our awards page

Tier 3 Package – £595

Full page article
Personalised digital logo
Bespoke crystal trophy
+ Free celebration items

Tier 2 Package – £995

Front cover Logo
Full page article
Personalised digital logo
Bespoke crystal trophy
Personalised digital certificate
+ Free celebration items

Tier 1 Package – £1,995

Supporting front cover image
Supporting front cover headline
Two page article
Two bespoke crystal trophies
Personalised digital logo
Personalised digital certificate
4-page devoted company e-brochure
Inside cover advert
+ Free celebration items

The Editor’s Choice Package – £2,995 (Only 1 Available)

Main front cover image
Main front cover headline
Four page article
Personalised digital logo
Three bespoke crystal trophies (Slate option available)
Personalised digital certificate
8-page devoted company e-brochure
50 hard copies of your brochure
+ Free celebration items

Single items:

Bespoke crystal trophies (each): £295
Personalised press release: £235
Personalised digital logo: £225
Bespoke digital certificate: £225
Article frame: £325 – with the annual celebratory magazine being a digital only publication, the article frame is perfect for a visual representation of your success in our awards.

Please note: Terms are 14 days unless stated otherwise. Sales are bound by our T’s& C’s at our website. P&P charged on all trophy orders. VAT charged for UK Sales and EC Sales unless we are in receipt of a valid EC VAT number.

I truly hope you are pleased with the results this year and with your award, if you would like to proceed with any of the above options (including Complimentary Package), please confirm with ‘AGREED AT’, and include the package name and cost. i.e. AGREED AT TIER 2 £995.

You may be wondering why I do not tell you the name of the magazine who issued this award. The reason is that even I get tired of being threatened with libel law suits, and I assume the people running these awards have an excellent grasp of what is legal, and what is not legal.

Only recently my colleagues have been falsely accused of defamation by a man who won some impressive-sounding awards years ago and has never stopped bragging about it since. This is not the first time this man has made empty threats to sue, but his methods have since become more intimidating. It has become necessary to block the many badgering emails he sends from multiple email accounts, in the certain knowledge that a real lawyer would know how to write a letter seeking redress for a tort, and would not recommend unscheduled and unwelcome visits to the defendant’s home. But if you google the name of the award he won, the first hit is a paid consultancy service offered by the same business responsible for Telecom Awards 2019. What an odd coincidence!

Eric Priezkalns
Eric Priezkalns
Eric is the Editor of Commsrisk. Look here for more about the history of Commsrisk and the role played by Eric.

Eric is also the Chief Executive of the Risk & Assurance Group (RAG), a global association of professionals working in risk management and business assurance for communications providers.

Previously Eric was Director of Risk Management for Qatar Telecom and he has worked with Cable & Wireless, T‑Mobile, Sky, Worldcom and other telcos. He was lead author of Revenue Assurance: Expert Opinions for Communications Providers, published by CRC Press. He is a qualified chartered accountant, with degrees in information systems, and in mathematics and philosophy.