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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Please contact BigAppleAwards@prsany.org with suggested additions or updates to this page.


Who can enter?
The 2020 Big Apple Awards competition is open to all public relations professionals in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut for programs created from 1/1/2019 through 3/31/2020 and implemented anywhere in the world. Most or all of the strategic work on the programs should have been performed by professionals in this tri-state area. Professionals outside the tri-state area are eligible to submit programs if, and only if, their program was implemented primarily in New York, New Jersey and/or Connecticut. Certification of the geographic area of focus for your campaign will be required during the entry process.

Where can I find the entry forms?
The entry process is 100% online. The entry form can be found on the website here. Draft entries can be reviewed and updated before submittal by visiting the 'In Progress' page under 'My Account'. All submissions, including ones that have been completed and submitted, can by found under 'My Applications.'

What does it cost to enter and when are entries due?
Deadlines and rates for the 2020 Big Apple Awards can be found above on this Entry Deadlines & Fees page.  

Why is there an Early Bird and Final Entry Deadline?
We want to give you every opportunity to prepare your entry in a way that meets your high standards. We also want to give you the opportunity to save money on entry fees if you get your entry in early. Either way, the online submission process lets you focus on creating the best possible content rather than worrying about copying, collating, packing, shipping and mailing (or hand-delivering!) your entry.

How can I pay for my award entries?
Payments are made online via a secure server. We accept Visa, MasterCard, and American Express. Payment is required prior to submitting your entry.

How do I pick the proper category?
With nearly 100 categories to choose from, there may be multiple areas of interest. A Campaign may be submitted in up to three applicable categories; a Spotlight Award can be submitted once. Entrants are responsible for reviewing the descriptions and picking the category/ies that are most appropriate. Judges may (but are not required to) move an entry to another category they believe is more appropriate. A full list of categories is available on the Big Apple Categories page.

Do I need permission from my client or employer to submit an entry?
PRSA-NY strongly recommends that you secure approval from your client and/or employer prior to submitting an entry. PRSA-NY accepts all award entries as if permission has been granted. An entry MAY be disqualified if there is a complaint that it was submitted without authorization, but no refunds will be given. Disputes involving clients, employers and submitters must be addressed by the parties. PRSA-NY will not mediate.

Does submitting an entry guarantee an award win?
No. Entries are judged on the basis of research, planning, execution, and results. Consideration is also given to the creative use of limited funds and to entries that have impressive media results and clearly articulate direct business or other campaign outcomes. The judges may award multiple winners as they see fit. However, they will not designate a winner in a category they feel contains no entries of award-winning caliber.

When will winners be notified?
A Shortlist of nominees in each category will be notified following the judging of the Big Apple entries (expected in mid-August). From these nominees, the Big Apple Award Winners and Honorable Mentions will be announced during the 2020 Big Apple Awards Virtual Experience (9/26 - 10/1).

What is the prize?
All awards will be presented at the 2020 Big Apple Awards Gala. Winners will receive a crystal award and Honorable Mention winners will receive a plaque. A Big Apple Award is recognized as one of the highest honors in public relations.

What information is required to enter?
Each campaign and single item entry must include a 100 Word Synopsis and two-page summary document detailing key public relations objectives, tactics, and results. This includes: Research/Situation Analysis, Planning, Execution, and Results/Evaluation. This information - along with additional information about budget (see below for related info) shall be repeated in the corresponding "Pillar" fields of the online form; space is available for supplemental information and additional supporting materials you think could give your entry a competitive edge when being reviewed by the judges.

What are the qualifications of the judges?
The judging panel is comprised of dozens of experienced, senior-level PR professionals representing a wide range of disciplines and expertise. Special care is taken to assure that all judges remain impartial and are not assigned to review the nomination(s) of a competitor. PRSA-NY provides judges with criteria and score sheets, along with training on our standards and best practices.

What if the entry must remain confidential?
The nature of the Big Apple Award process cannot preserve confidentiality. If you have confidential work that cannot be shared, it should not be submitted. Entries become the property of PRSA-NY. The organization reserves the right to use entries or a reproduction of entries in part or in full. This may include posting on the PRSA-NY and/or IPR websites, use at the PRSA-NY Big Apple Gala, to promote future Big Apple Awards and/or to provide a resource of successful programs for educational purposes.

Entrants in Category 13 (Crisis Communications) and Category 14 (Issues Management) may request that sensitive information be kept private for access by judges only; these requests will be handled on a case-by-case basis (contact BigAppleAwards@prsany.org for more information).

Entrants in all categories have the opportunity during the entry submission process to indicate whether budget figures are to be kept private for access only by our judges.

Does PRSA-NY release program budgets?
Budget figures are requested for all entries; failure to include budget information may result in lower scoring. If the campaign or single item budget can’t be disclosed due to confidentiality, entrants may indicate that the budget is to be kept private among our judges.

Will entrants receive the judges' score sheets?
No. The judges' online score sheets are the property of PRSA-NY.

Is there a dispute process?
No. PRSA-NY and its Big Apple Awards program is a volunteer-driven program. Judging is based on criteria set out on the various pages of this website. All scores and decisions are final.

How can I become involved in the Big Apple planning process?
PRSA-NY encourages members who are interested in volunteering to participate in the Big Apple Awards. If you are interested in volunteering on the awards committee, which manages the entry and judging process, or on the Big Apple Awards Gala planning committee, contact the PRSA-NY office at BigAppleAwards@prsany.org or call 212-228-7228.