Seventy different companies from newspapers, TV stations, radio stations and digital news sites competed for the awards celebrating creative and business advancements in the digital realm.
Graham Media Group received nine awards, the highest number out of all the competing companies. The faculty at the Medill School/Northwestern University judged the categories.
ClickOnDetroit, WDIV-Local 4's website and a Graham Media Group property, once again took home top honors at the Local Media Association's Digital Innovation Awards ceremony.
"Our main goal is to create a website users want to engage with. From news to entertainment and everything in between, we're constantly trying to provide what our ClickOnDetroit community is looking for," said Local 4 Vice President and General Manager Marla Drutz.
Best Local Website (1st place): ClickOnDetroit.com
This award recognizes the best all-around local media websites. Judges considered all aspects including: design, content (local and relevant), use of photos and videos, user interaction/load speed, presentation of advertising, mobile adaptability and more.
Judges' comments"ClickOnDetroit.com is a superior local website that builds audience through news coverage as well as creative initiatives such as the 4Frenzy voting platform. Their entry provides evidence that the site has grown its audience substantially."
Best Contest and/or Promotion (1st place): 4Frenzy
The goal of this award is for a contest or promotion that stands out above the rest in regards to creativity of the promotion, digital engagement for the station and results for the sponsor.
Judges' comments: "The strategy behind 4Frenzy is smart on a variety of levels. Positioning yourselves with TV, digital, social media and real-world shows the power of leveraging different channels to build your brand. A really great message behind the campaign."
Best Use of Data (2nd place): AllAboutAnnArbor.com
(Judges' comments) "WDIV discovered a new market opportunity in Ann Arbor by analyzing audience metrics."
Best Redesign/Relaunch (2nd & 3rd place respectively): 4Frenzy relaunch
(Judges' comments) "This relaunch was successful in expanding the scope of the site, building audience and generating revenue. The design is good and matches the sports theme."
(Judges' comments) "The 4Frenzy site is an interesting way to cover high school sports, since it puts a lot of focus on the friends and families who drive that coverage to vote for things."
Best New Digital Initiative (3rd place): GroundSource text message campaign during America's Thanksgiving Parade
(Judges' comments) "A good way to retain broadcast audiences while growing digital audiences at the same time."
"All of these winning projects were built on cross-department collaboration," said Dustin Block, digital executive producer for WDIV. "Our news, sales, creative services, and digital teams get together regularly to meet user and client needs, and to reach our business goals."
In addition, the Local Media Association honored WSLS 10 in Roanoke with a first place in the Best Digital News Project category for its coverage of Friday high school football on wsls.com. KSAT 12 in San Antonio earned a 3rd place award for ksat.com in the Best Digital News Project category, while WJXT News4Jax.com was awarded the Best Native Content Campaign for their work with the Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville.