Winner: Mail Metro Media
Just two years after being created, Mail Metro Media has won the prize for best commercial team after demonstrating "particularly impressive" partnerships and an "innovative team structure".
When DMG Media merged its Mail and Metro commercial divisions in 2018 its sales leaders took the opportunity to focus internally.
A raft of initiatives followed, including setting up everyone to work from home, offering free exercise classes during work hours and establishing a board to distribute opportunities fairly.
To ensure it was hiring unique and diverse talent, Mail Metro Media partnered Brixton Finishing School – employing two of its graduates – and promoted an apprenticeship scheme.
Working with the editors – including the newish Daily Mail editor, Geordie Greig – Mail Metro Media worked to challenge marketers’ perception of the brand through client roadshows and upfront sessions at agencies.
And this work paid off. Partnerships included a video ad running on the print cover of Metro for Marks & Spencer at Christmas and a target-busting podcast hosted by a Jasmine Hemsley for Pukka.
The creative solutions were accompanied by a robust online proposition with a new data management platform – tracking IDs not cookies – and survey panel. Crucially, Mail Metro Media managed to keep its print revenues stable (up 0.2% in a challenging market) and post overall growth of a respectable 3.5%.
An impressive performance and a deserved winner from the pre-Covid-19 era.
Highly Commended: IM Food, Immediate Media
The IM Food team had a great year, delivering 7% growth in print revenues and expanding partnership revenues by a whopping 30%. After setting itself exacting targets in 2018, IM Food – which sells across brands including BBC Good Food, Olive and Delicious – revamped its partnership pitch process, expanded its team’s digital training and restructured to drive client relationships.
Judges praised the team’s "strategic foundations" and "strong" revenue figures.
Shortlisted: B2B/Nowse Sales Team, Dennis Publishing