With the Earlybird entry deadline ending at midnight tomorrow, late entries closing the following Friday (January 31st), nominations open and the first round of judges announced it’s been a busy few days at Performance Marketing Awards HQ.

Continuing our series of Q&A’s from past PMA winners we spoke with Andrew Gallagher, Senior Director - Marketing (GB) for Papa John’s Pizza, about the campaign with Net Media Planet that won the now updated Best Use of Mobile category in 2013 – and his thoughts on how the launch of the first Sequential Search will impact Papa John’s Pizza’s search strategy.

How did it feel to win such a competitive category?

Andrew: The Performance Marketing Awards are universally recognised as an authority within the industry, and we were incredibly honoured to be recognised in this category. 

What industry trends do you foresee in 2014?

Andrew: 2013 was certainly eventful, and we anticipate that 2014 will be no less action packed! 

Google made great strides in Search throughout 2013 with a number of new technology releases and features such as Hummingbird, Knowledge Graph, Enhanced Campaigns and PLA growth. With the launch of the first Sequential Search, we anticipate that Google will continue to explore the evolution of ‘smart search’. We will be considering how this will impact our Search strategy.

Tracking will also be key for 2014; the release of Google’s Universal Analytics has made tracking conversions across devices a reality. It’s essential to our business that we better understand how consumers search and purchase across devices.  Going forward we have to go beyond considering mobile and desktop separately and think about the entire customer journey across all devices.

Something else that we are really excited about is the increasing integration between offline and online. We look forward to working across multiple channels as the technology and practices evolve further. We also believe the potential with social media advertising will increase tremendously in 2014.

There are exciting times ahead for our online marketing campaigns! 

Why are events such as this important to the performance marketing industry?

Andrew: The Performance Marketing Awards is a core industry event that showcases some of the best marketing campaigns over the past year. It presents a great platform from which to share some of the most innovative campaigns and best practice.

With the industry evolving at such a pace, events such as this ensure that we continue to recognise and share the achievements of the very best companies operating within in it, raising the benchmark for innovation and ensuring the UK remains at the forefront in digital marketing.  

What do you feel made you stand out from the other contestants to make yours an award winning entry and do you have any tips for future entrants?

Andrew: The pizza delivery sector is highly competitive, with promotions very much part of the strategy of the dominant players. We were looking to move away from this approach.

This campaign presented a really exciting opportunity for us because it challenged industry convention and demonstrated just how compelling the mobile channel can be in connecting with consumers.

Working with Net Media Planet’s expert team and proprietary technology we were able to deliver a truly compelling ad campaign.

For future entrants I would recommend that you carry out thorough research to truly understand who your customers are and how they engage with your brand, as this is fundamental to delivering messages that will have the right impact at the right time.

Furthermore, I would recommend making best use of the technology available. With this campaign, Net Media Planet employed the latest technological capabilities to enhance the delivery modes and methods of our messages.

Finally, I would recommend building a close partnership with your agency, ensuring that they understand your goals and have the ideas, expertise and technical capabilities to take those ideas as far as they can go is the foundation of a great marketing campaign.