Canadian papers in finals at INMA

From printing on pink paper to empowering high school students, newspaper marketing campaigns will be recognized at the International Newsmedia Marketing Awards, held in Miami this May.

Seven Canadian newspapers are finalists at the International Newsmedia Marketing Association (INMA) Awards for their inventive readership engagement and audience development efforts.

Headquartered in Dallas, Texas, INMA is a non-profit member organization dedicated to recognizing and extending marketing activities of newspapers, and most of the major Canadian media companies are members. The awards will be held May 15 at the INMA World Congress in Miami.

The Globe and Mail is a finalist in the Readership/Usage of the Print Newspaper category (over 300,000 circ) for a trade marketing campaign featuring messages written on Globe staff writers’ hands, developed by Toronto-based agency Black. It’s up against the Toronto Star, a finalist in the same category for an Earth Hour special, for which it published how-to guides for greening households leading up to Earth Hour 2008. Other nominees include the Montreal Gazette for an elections campaign called ‘Words Matter’ by Bleublancrouge, and the Toronto Sun for a special section with the Toronto Automobile Dealers Association.

The Winnipeg Free Press is a finalist in the Public Relations and Community Service Category (circ. 75,000 to 300,000). For the World Conference on Breast Cancer in Winnipeg last June, the Free Press printed an entire issue on pink paper, a hit with local readers, who picked up extra copies as souvenirs. The paper is also a finalist in the Online Usage and Engagement category for last summer’s ‘Greatest Manitoban’ contest.

Torstar’s Waterloo Region Record is also a two-time finalist, getting the New Product/Audience Development category nod (circulation under 75,000) for a new high school paper called The Catch. Published five times per year, The Catch is supported by advertising, with content and layout developed by about 40 local high school students.

‘You hear that the Internet is killing the newspaper. I don’t agree with that. I just think that you have to give this demographic a reason to engage in the newspaper, and I believe that that will translate to future readership,’ says Jonathan Clayton, youth readership specialist at the Record. Advertisers in the paper include universities, a modelling agency, and the local Tim Hortons. The Catch is also supported online with youth editor blogs. About 25,000 copies of each issue are printed.

‘I really believe in viral marketing, so if you get one student that has a stake in the product, they’re going go back to school and tell five of their friends,’ Clayton tells MiC. The Record also was shortlisted for a special Home Makeover Event in the Subscription Sales category.

The St. Catharines Standard is a finalist in the Online Audience Usage and Development category (circ. under 75,000) for a popular photo and video submissions site called Talkspot.

To view the full list of award finalists, go here.