Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Cyclone Carlos study wins national award for CSR

A study looking at how Top Enders accessed information during Cyclone Carlos this year has won a Darwin company a national award for corporate social responsibility.

Darwin-based Creative Territory won a Highly Commended Award in the Australian Golden Target Awards announced in Sydney last night.

The award recognised work the company had carried out during and after the cyclone to communicate emergency information, collect data on how local people accessed information and subsequently set up an online portal for future emergency events.

Creative Territory Managing Director Tracy Jones said her work centres on the critical role social and online media is now playing in getting messages out to the community.

“While traditional media will always remain important, they generally cannot compete with the speed and engagement that social media allows,” she said.

“People are increasingly turning to Facebook, Twitter and other online channels to stay in touch with what is happening.”

Creative Territory undertook research in the weeks following Cyclone Carlos that revealed a strong preference among Darwin residents to access information via the internet, particularly using mobile devices such as smart phones and tablet computers.

“Almost 3 in 4 people said they accessed information about the cyclone via the internet and even more say they will use the internet in the future,” Tracy said.

“The results also show very clearly that the more people go online to get their information, the more they feel informed about what is happening.”

Creative Territory shared its survey results with both local residents and the broader public relations community both nationally and internationally adding to a weight of global discussion about the role of social media in a crisis or emergency.

The national Golden Target Awards are awarded annually by the Public Relations Institute of Australia.