Local social media and public relations agency Sociallee PR & Media Co
was honored with three awards at the local Image Awards competition through the Northwest Florida Coast chapter of the Florida Public Relations Association (FPRA). The local agency was honored for the “Misty the Mermaid” campaigns for The Island by Hotel RL on Okaloosa Island.
Misty the Mermaid is a real-life mermaid who has become an iconic feature for the hotel and a significant part of the experience for many guests. Misty sits at The Grotto Pool each week, meeting, greeting and snapping photos with guests. In March 2020, The Island was gearing up for an exciting spring and summer season, as they were completing a $15 million property-wide renovation. When COVID-19 forced the closing of the beaches, thousands of guests were heartbroken to learn that not only their beach vacation may not take place, but hundreds of guests expressed their disappointment in missing the chance to see Misty. The Island team partnered with Sociallee to bring Misty to the guests virtually, through the “Mermaid Tails” video series on social media, where Misty read a different uplifting children’s story each week on social media. Viewers had the opportunity to win a signed copy of the book, shipped to their doorstep, by liking, commenting and sharing the video. With over 212,200
views across Facebook, Instagram and YouTube throughout the spring and summer, the team knew this campaign was special.
“In the midst of the uncertainty of COVID-19 and the temporary hotel closure, we wanted to share some positivity and fun from The Island for our followers and loyal guests who weren’t able to travel and meet Misty in-person,” said Jackie Blue, Director of Sales & Marketing at The Island by Hotel RL. “Misty has really been a big part in bringing the hotel back to life, not just from the renovation, but from the pandemic.”
On Tuesday, April 14, the campaign was honored with an Award of Distinction and Judges’ Award in the Integrated Marketing category. Additionally, the campaign received the highest award, an Image Award, in the Online Engagement category. An Image Award is only given to campaigns that score in the 90th percentile and to the highest scoring entry in that category. The campaign was the only one of the evening to win more than one award.
“We are so grateful to not only win these prestigious awards, but to collaborate with clients that encourage new ideas and creativity,” said Sociallee owner Whitney Lee. “Working with The Island truly never feels like work.”
The Misty the Mermaid campaign will now be submitted to FPRA’s state-wide Golden Image Awards competition, where over 1,200 public relations professionals enter hundreds of campaigns in efforts to claim one of the coveted Golden pyramid awards. The state-wide winners will be unveiled at the Golden Image Awards celebration on Tuesday, August 10, 2021, at The Ritz-Carlton Orlando, in connection with FPRA’s annual state conference.