For over a decade, Hearst has distinguished the publishers of its top-performing titles during the annual Tower Awards. But for the first time last night, the company honored both its magazines' print and digital editorial divisions at the inaugural Hearst Editorial Excellence Awards.
Harper's Bazaar won design and photography awards. It also took home the digital innovation of the year award for its online section called #TheList, a daily trends round-up that boasted the added benefit of being a vehicle for native advertising and offering integration with the magazine's ShopBazaar e-commerce platform.
Also awarded for native-ad prowess were the marketers for Food Network Magazine, whose December 2014 cover, which "thoughtfully integrated the magazine's holiday sweets into Kohl's holiday campaign," won cover of the year.
The award for print innovation of the year went to Cosmopolitan for launching its very own conference—The Fun Fearless Life Weekend—in New York last fall. The brand's digital arm won the award for video of the year for its unsubtly titled "Cats & Abs" music video. (The clip, unsurprisingly, has been watched more than 400,000 times so far.)
Special interest awards went to HGTV Magazine, for the paint special section in its June 2014 issue, and to O, The Oprah Magazine, for its November 2014 feature "Ready or Not: The Caregivers Guide." The public interest award went to Marie Claire for its September 2014 story "Revolution on Sorority Row," which addressed segregation in campus sororities at the University of Alabama.
Other winners included: Esquire captured the story of the year honor for "The Abortion Ministry of Dr. Willie Parker," John H. Richardson's September feature on Alabama abortion clinics; Redbookmag.com took home the award for regular section or department for The Truth About Trying, which focuses on infertility struggles; and, CountryLiving.com triumphed in the best use of social media category.
Finalists for the awards were chosen by a number of Hearst Magazines executives (including president David Carey and editorial director Ellen Levine) as well as a handful of people from outside the company, including Refinery29 editor-in-chief Christene Barberich, Saveur founding editor-in-chief Dorothy Kalins and Galvanized Media CEO and founder (and former Men's Health editor-in-chief) David Zinczenko.