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MRA Marketing has won the award for Best Built Environment Member Organisation Marketing Campaign at the Construction Marketing Awards (CMAs). The full-service agency was recognised by judges for its outstanding work on Building Safely. The high-profile awareness and consultation campaign for the Construction Products Association (CPA) encouraged the construction industry to comment and suggest improvements to a new Code for Construction Product Information (CCPI).

The new Code was produced in response to the issues raised in Dame Judith Hackitt’s report ‘Building A Safer Future’, following the Grenfell Tower fire in 2017. Specifically, the CCPI tackles shortcomings in product testing, information, and marketing, identified in Chapter 7 of the report.

The CPA set up the Marketing Integrity Group (MIG) in 2018 to address the issues raised in the Hackitt report. Two years of work with open debates, discussions and focus groups across the construction supply chain led to a ‘Call for Evidence’ survey in 2018. The new Code (CCPI) was published in a report in January 2021. The MIG was keen to consult the industry as widely as possible before finalising the Code and transferring it to an independent body to implement and manage.

The consultation, launched in February 2021, invited trade associations, manufacturers, distributors, specifiers, and users of product information to comment on the new Code and its 11 Clauses with suggestions as to how it could be improved. A key requirement of the consultation therefore was that respondents read the new Code before commenting, so the consultation had to raise awareness of the Code and its importance and make it easy for respondents to comment and suggest changes.

Given the time constraints and the importance of the consultation, MRA Marketing created a high profile, dedicated awareness campaign. The campaign had its own logo and name – Building Safely; a new tagline – Better Data, Safer Building; and a new campaign website. A launch press release explained the Code and the consultation. The trade media’s support was crucial in giving great exposure to thought leadership articles, comments, letters, and blogs. A period of intensive PR, social media, webinars and direct marketing rapidly built awareness and understanding.

Despite a limited budget, the campaign reached widely and the consultation, which was managed by MRA Research, attracted in-depth response representing the bulk of the industry. This enabled the MIG to review and finalise the new Code with confidence before transferring it to Construction Product Information Ltd (CPI Ltd) in August to set-up and administer.

Awarding the win, the CMA judges said it was: “An outstanding entry dealing with one of the most critical issues in the construction industry. The extensive effort in such a short timeframe is commendable, with the agency going above and beyond to execute the campaign, bringing great results at the end. Mission accomplished, not only for the client (CPA) but for the industry.”

Mike Rigby, MRA Marketing’s CEO says: “Grenfell will change the way Britain builds and looks after its buildings. Driven by the Hackitt report our building practices are being reset. The Code is a crucial step in the right direction and the depth and breadth of response in the consultation is recognition from the industry that change is needed to ensure tragedies like Grenfell do not happen again. We loved working with the CPA on this important campaign for construction.”

Chief Executive of the CPA, Peter Caplehorn, adds: “We are immensely proud of the work undertaken with the Code, as we feel it signifies that our industry has not only faced up to some critical failings in practices and culture, but crucially how best to correct those as well.  There are many committed industry colleagues who have contributed to that end, but we particularly appreciate seeing the CMA judges recognise the MRA team for their outstanding work. MRA’s guidance and professionalism throughout have been essential to this milestone.”

The prestigious awards took place on the 2nd December attracting the best and brightest in construction. MRA is a winner of 20 previous CMA awards, and twice winner of the CMA’s Agency of the Year. Visit www.mra-marketing.co.uk.

For more details on the new Code or to download a copy of the results from the industry consultation, visit www.cpicode.org.uk.