The Pinnacle Awards is an annual celebration of marketing excellence. For almost a decade, the American Marketing Association of Rochester has recognized local marketers for their program strategy, tactics, creative, and most importantly results!

We receive impressive submissions that represent a broad range of marketing professionals in different industries and disciplines vying for their submission to be best in show. And each year, one non-profit and one for-profit submitter with an outstanding overall strategy and results to match, are honored as Marketer of the Year.

Though creativity plays a role, Pinnacle Award submissions are judged primarily on RESULTS!  Your objectives should be clear and measurable. Your results section must indicate how you evaluated your success and met or exceeded your objectives. For the tactic-only entries, the narrative should indicate how the entry contributed to the overall results of a marketing strategy or campaign.

In order to provide our submitters with a non-bias and exceptional panel of judges, the AMA Rochester Board carefully selects a panel of judges and strategically assigns submissions for their review.

Pinnacle Awards Categories

Best Integrated Marketing Campaign This category recognizes the campaign with the best results that use multiple channels such as but not limited to: content, email, social, SEM, and direct mailers.
Small Budget Campaign (Less than $5k out-of-pocket expense) This category recognizes the campaign that achieved significant results with a budget under $5,000.
Best Campaign Rejected By Client This category pays homage to the brilliant ideas that never saw the light of day. If you had a client who didn’t recognize the brilliance of your work and decided to go with a different concept.
Product Launch This category encompasses the launch of any new digital or physical product as well as launches for new features, add-ons, upgrades, or migrations. It honors initiatives that effectively introduce a product to the market, creating buzz, driving demand, and establishing a solid foundation for future sales. Entrants should demonstrate how their product launch strategy was innovative, well-executed, and impactful. Suggested KPIs for showcasing success include initial sales performance, market penetration, customer acquisition, brand awareness and reach, pre-order and launch day metrics, product reviews and ratings, social media engagement, ROI of the launch campaign, and/or customer feedback and sentiment.
Paid Search Campaign Recognizing the most effective and innovative paid search advertising campaigns.
Programmatic Campaign Recognizing the most effective and innovative programmatic advertising campaigns.
Paid Social Campaign Recognizing the most effective and innovative paid social advertising campaigns.
Organic Social Campaign Recognizing the most effective and innovative organic social advertising campaigns.
Mobile Marketing Campaign This category recognizes innovative and effective mobile marketing campaigns that skillfully use mobile specific tactics such as an app, SMS/MMS messaging, mobile website, location-based serices, and QR codes. Your entry should demonstarte how your mobile marketing strategies have effectively reached and engaged users, driving tangible results. Suggested KPIs to showcase success include user acquistion, engagement metrics (CTR, session length, or in-app interactions), conversion rates (app downloads, purchases, sign-ups, ect.), retention rates, SMS/MMS engagement (open rates, response rates, opt-in rates), mobile traffic, increased foot traffic or local engagement, ROI and Revenue generation, customer feedback and ratings, social media shares and engagement, and/ or evidence of unique or innovative use of mobile technology in a campaign that sets it apart from standard practices.
Blog Recognizing the most engaging and effective blog, either B2B or B2C. A great entry will show metrics like clicks to blog on promotional posts, increased traffic to the blog as compared to other blogs, and/or time on blog page. Entry must include link to blog article.
Website Recogonizing outstanding design, functionality, and user experience in a website. Entrants in this category have launched a new website, relaunched and existing website, or made significant updates to the page. Enry must include link to website or screenshots.
Influencer Marketing Influencer marketing is a collaboration between popular social-media users and brands to promote brands' products or services. This category recognizes the marketer or marketing team that leveraged this tactic to measurably increase brand exposure. Great entries will provide the judges with information on the influencer, why they were chosen to help you increase reach. Consider explaining how you controlled your branding and messaging while still allowing the influencer to be authentic with their audience.
Landing Page Recognizing an outstanding landing page that effectively drove conversions. Comparing this landing page to another landing page with lower conversions is a great way to showcase your success. Submission must include link to landing page or screenshots.
Earned Media & SEO This category celebrates outstanding achievements in earning media attention and enhancing search engine optimization (SEO). It recognizes efforts that effectively boost online visibility, drive organic traffic, and enhance brand reputation through earned media and strategic SEO practices. Entrants should demonstrate how their approach has led to significant improvements in online presence. Suggested KPIs include organic traffic growth, keyword rankings, backlink acquistion, brand mentions, engagement metrics, bounce rate reduction, conversion rate from organic traffic, domain authority improvements, content reach and distribution, search engine visibility score, social media shares and virality, and/or media coverage citations.
Email Recognizes initiatives that stand out in their use of email as a marketing tool, focusing on aspects like innovative design, compelling content, personalized messaging, and strategic segmentation. Entries are evaluated based on their ability to engage the audience, drive conversions, and achieve specific marketing goals. Successful campaigns in this category demonstrate excellence in crafting targeted messages, optimizing open and click-through rates, and effectively nurturing leads and customer relationships through well-executed email strategies.
Print Advertising Recognizing excellence in print advertising. A great entry in this category will include how this tactic contributed to the overall success of your marketing campaign or program. We reccommend sharing details like how the placement expanded your reach to your target audience and an estimate of how much, how many impressions this placement reached, and/or how it was cost effective, or engagements with the CTA if you were able to capture.
TV Commercial / CTV Campaign Highest performing TV spot. Max 1 minute in length. Entries for this category can include KPIs like viewability, completion rate, frequency, reach, and conversion rate to showcase results. Entries must include a link or file to the commercial for judges to view.
Radio Commercial Recognizing outstanding creativity and effectiveness in radio advertising. Entries for this category can include KPIs like reach, brand awareness, cost per lead, or ROAS to showcase results. Entries must include a link or file to the commercial for judge's to listen to.
Collateral Recognizing exceptional printed or digital marketing materials. Some suggestions for showcasing the success of your collateral include downloads, testimonials from sales team, coupon redemptions, ect. If you used your collateral in a specific campaign, feel free to use the results of your overall campaign that the collateral is attributed to.
Direct Mail/Direct Response Recognizing the most effective direct mail or direct response campaigns. To showcase the effectiveness of this tactic, consider inlcuding KPIs like response rate, coupon redemptions, call tracking stats, tracking urls, QR code traffic, Cost Per Response, Cost Per Acquistion, ROI, or other custom metrics you may have captured like vistor-to-lead. If your campaign was targeted towards existing customers you can consider customer retention KPIs, CLV, improved attrition rate, or upsell/cross sell stats.
Trade Show Marketing This category recognizes campaigns that creatively and effectively utilize trade shows as a platform for brand promotion, networking, lead generation, and product showcasing. Entries should illustrate how their trade show strategies have successfully captured audiencfe attention and achieved signficant business results. Suggested KPIs for showcasing success include lead generation, booth traffic, engagement activites (demos, contests, interactive displays), conversion rates, lead quality, brand awareness impact, customer feedback and satisfaction, ROI and cost effectiveness, networking and partnership opportunities, social media engagement, innovative presentation, media coverage, post-event follow-up success, and/or direct feedback from onsite sales team.
Special Event Recognizing the most creative and effective special event marketing. This category includes virtual and in-person events excluding tradeshows. Examples include webinars, conferences, event sponsorships, training events, workshops, or networking events. Great entries will clearly articulate the desired outcome of the event, KPIs that effectively measure the success of the event, as well as how the event contributed positively to the overall marketing program.
Public Relations Iniaitive This category recognizes outstanding public relations campaigns that effectively manage and enhance the public image of a brand, organization, or individual. The award celebrates initiatives that demonstrate innovative strategies in media relations, crisis management, community engagement, and communication campaigns. These initiatives are evaluated based on their creativity, execution, and impact in shaping public perception, fostering positive media coverage, and building meaningful relationships with target audiences. Successful entries in this category showcase excellence in message delivery, audience engagement, and achieving strategic PR objectives.
Internal Communications Initiative This category recognizes campaigns or strategies that demonstrate innovative approaches to keeping employees informed, motivated, and aligned with company goals. Entrants should illustrate how their internal communications initiatives have positively impacted the internal audience and organizational dynamics. Suggested KPIs for showcasing success include employee engagement scores, readership/viewership metrics, feedback, and interaction rates, changes in employees' behavior or attitudes, information retention and understanding, employee survey results, turnover and retentation rates, and innovation and creativity.
Market Research This category recognizes the importance of thorough and innovative market research in understanding customer needs, market trends, and competitive landscapes. Entrants should demonstrate how their market research has informed business strategy, product development, or marketing tactics with clear evidence that the study provided value. Suggestions for showcasing the success of your research include insight accuracy and relevancy, actionable recommendations, impact on business decisions, ROI from research-driven initiatives, examples of innovation in methods of data collection and analysis such as the use of new technologies to gather and/or interpret data, customer understanding enhancement, market trend identification, the competitive advantage gained, stakeholder feedback, research reach and scale, the accuracy of predictions or forecasts made based on research findings, and/or changes in market share or positioning.
Campaign Creative: Video Recognizing the most creative and impactful marketing videos. To showcase results, you can include metrics like views, engagement (likes, comments), play-rate, social shares, watch time, clicks and click-through rates, and conversions. Entries must include a link or file upload for judges to watch the video. For a great entry, consider including screenshots of effective thumbnails, the platform the video was hosted on and why (e.g., Youtube, Vimeo, social media, website, etc.), any a/b testing you did, how the video attributed to a specific marketing campaign or your overall program, and creative considerations.
Campaign Creative: Copywriting Recognizing outstanding skill and creativity in ad copy or marketing writing. To showcase success, you can share the overall results of the campaign where your copy was implemented, as well as specific KPIs like reach, engagement, conversion, retention, etc. A great submission will show the judges how your copy is attributed to people taking the desired action after reading it.
Campaign Creative: Graphic Design Recognizing exceptional creativity in graphic design for a marketing campaign. A great entry will showcase how the design of the campaign assets captured your brand, elevated your copy, and attributed to the high performance of the campaign overall. Did the design leverage the brand colors, fonts, and styles? How easy are the designs to maintain if you want to repurpose it for a future campaign? Were design hours utilized effectively without multiple revisions eating into your budget? Suggested KPIs include open rates, conversion rates, engagement metrics, social likes, and shares.
Annual Report This category recognizes the most outstanding annual report, that excels in both design and communication effectiveness. Entries should showcase how their annual report effectively conveys the organization's yearly achievements, financial performance, and strategic direction. Suggestions for showing results include readership engagement, design & and accessibility, clarity and transparency, stakeholder feedback, alignment with brand values, and any unique or innovative approaches used to present the information, such as interactive elements in digital reports or creative visualizations in data. Remember, judges may not be familiar with your organization, goals, and/or brand so be sure to include relevant context to ensure the excellence of your report is fully conveyed.
Packaging This category recognizes excellence in packaging design that not only captivates aesthetically but also excels in functionality, sustainability, and brand alignment. Entries should demonstrate how their packaging has contributed to the success of the product and brand. Suggestions for showcasing success can be qualitative or quantitative and could include sales growth, customer reviews, brand awareness surveys, market research, cost efficiency, market share growth, consumer accessibility and convenience, design innovations, supply chain efficiency, and sustainability improvements like reduced carbon footprint, material use or increased recyclability.
Innovation in Healthcare Marketing Recognizing outstanding and effective marketing iniaitives in healthcare marketing.
Innovation in Educational Institution Marketing Recognizing outstanding and effective marketing iniaitives in education marketing.
AI-Driven Campaign This category recognizes exceptional marketing campaigns that effectively utilize artificial intelligence (AI) to enhance targeting, personalization, content creation, customer interaction, or data analysis. Entrants should demonstrate how AI technology has been innovatively integrated into their marketing strategies to achieve significant results. Submissions should focus on the strategic and creative integration of AI to deliver more impactful and efficient marketing results. Suggestions for showcasing results include improved targeting accuracy, personalization effectiveness, content engagement, scalability and reach, time savings, and so forth.
Brand Launch / Brand Refresh Recognizing a brand refresh or a completely new brand! For a new brand launch, include how you met or exceeded your business goals for the launch. What was the purpose and did you meet it? For brand refreshes, consider engagement metrics like impressions before and after the re-launch, survey data, testimonials/feedback on new branding, or an overall lift across your KPIs since the refresh.
Most Improved Tactic This category recognizes a significant improvement in a specific marketing tactic or strategy. It recognizes the transformative efforts that have led to markedly enhanced performance, efficiency, and impact compared to previous iterations. Entrants should demonstrate how changes or optimizations in a particular tactic have resulted in substantial improvements in outcomes and effectiveness through relevant and spcific KPIs that best represent success of your chosen tactic.
Green Marketing Award This award recognizes marketing campaigns that effectively promote sustainability, align with Rochester's environmental initiatives and eco-friendly business practices, or demonstrate the use of green practices in marketing such as using eco-friendly materials for collateral. Entrants should demonstrate how their campaign has successfully raised awareness, influenced behavior towards sustainability, and supported environmental goals. Suggested KPIs to showcase success include increased sustainability awareness, behavioral change impact, engagement with sustainability content, partnerships with environmental organizations, sustainable product sales, environmental impact metrics, community involvement in environmental initiatives, positive media coverage, social media sentiment analysis, stakeholder feedback, and testimonials.
Rochester Small Business Marketing Excellence This category recognizes outstanding marketing efforts by small businesses in Rochester, acknowledging the challenges and resourcefulness required.
Rochester Heritage Award Recognizing the campaign that most creatively incorporated elements of Rochester's culture, history, or identity.
Social Impact Campaign This category recognizes campaigns that effectively engage and benefit the Rochester community. Entries should focus on initiatives that foster community involvement, address community needs, or strengthen community relations. Entrants should demonstrate how their campaign has successfully built meaningful connections with the community, creating mutual benefits and positive impacts. Suggested KPIs include community participation levels, impact on community issues, partnership with community organizations, positive media coverage, social media sentiment analysis, community feedback and satisfaction, volunteer engagement, sustainability of community benefits, and/or cultural and social inclusivity.
Submit Entry

How to Enter

Submissions are typically accepted starting in Q1 of the calendar year for work from January through December of the previous year. To enter, complete the form on the AMA Submittable site before the deadline. You can save your entries as a draft on the submission platform until you are ready to submit just be sure to upload before the deadline.

For important information like when we are accepting entries, deadlines, extensions, finalists, and so forth, subscribe to our mailing list.

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For more tips on how to write a winning entry, download our entry guidelines.