App Awards and Accolades – Are You Entering? | 4i

App Awards and Accolades – Are You Entering?

23 August 2016 ‐ 6 min read

Let’s be honest – doing great work should be recognised and rewarded. But when there seems to be an award for everything nowadays, how much attention should you be giving to app awards and entering your work to (hopefully) scoop a win? We take a look at a few awards you could win for mobile apps, and why we think some of them are important.

What Is The Reward?

When it comes to creating great mobile applications, or committing to doing exemplary work, excellence should be a habit, and not just something you do for a reward. But if you’ve created something great and feel its worthy of recognition, ask yourself three things:

- What is the reward? Whether a financial / PR benefit or other, weigh up the value that it can bring to your business.

- What are the networking opportunities? Award ceremonies have the ability to get all the right people under one roof – ask yourself its worth the investment regardless of whether your work wins or not.

- Is it worth the risk of potentially coming home empty handed? When all is said and done, the entry fees, travel, time out of office etc can amount to a hefty chunk out of your marketing budget. Something to consider.

Of course, when it comes to garnering publicity and media attention at a low cost, winning app awards is a great way to do just that. Sometimes, even entering to win an award may be enough to heighten your company or application’s profile, so that’s an important element to consider too. Let’s take a look at the high profile competitions that encompass the mobile world in South Africa:

MTN App Of The Year

As an industry-specific competition that centres on mobile development and applications, this is probably top of your list. The 2016 App Of The Year was just announced, with SweepSouth rival, Domestly taking home top honours and other apps like Ikhokha, HearZA and Tuta-Me reaching the finals. But the MTN App Of The Year entry process and knowledgeable judges investigate and interrogate each application entered, looking not only at the apps’ functionality, but marketing procedures and, of course, the problems they solve. The entry criteria for this competition is quite strict, and focuses highly on showcasing applications that solve the most pressing problems in South Africa.

New Generation Awards

With entries having recently closed for the 2016 round of the New Generation Awards, we’re looking forward to seeing who has entered and who will win this year! This competition is great for corporate businesses that have encompassed digital and social media, implementing strategies or campaigns that have seen great results. Check out the website for more information.

AppsAfrica Innovation Awards

AppsAfrica is a unique media portal that provides strategic operational planning services for mobile and technology ventures that launch or roll out in Sub-Saharan Africa. We’re big fans of this one, with ten categories catered for through the Innovation Awards categories. Entries have just opened for the 2016 competition, so we’d recommend you get entering. The app awards celebrate the positive impact from ventures that can clearly demonstrate innovation using mobile or other technologies to meet the needs of any African markets.

MTN App of the Year and AppsAfrica recognise startups that solve a critical need in Africa, such as creating jobs 


The Pendoring Awards are something highly unique to South Africa, catering for all eleven official languages and showcasing work that speaks to every citizen of our beautiful country. Catering for twelve different categories of work, the Pendoring awards are highly acclaimed. Entries recently closed for 2016 however if you’re keen to enter next year, keep your eyes on a possible prize here.

The Bookmark Awards

When it comes to prestige and industry accolades, winning a Bookmark award is like winning gold. For the mobile world, the iAB Bookmark Awards cater well for UX and UI and focuses quite keenly on showcasing the very best of agency work in South Africa. The Bookmark Awards for 2016 took place earlier this year, with the winners listed here. Think you’ve got what it takes? We’d recommend you keep your eyes peeled for information on how to enter in 2017.


Finally, no list of app awards or competitions in South Africa could ever be considered anywhere near complete without the Loeries which just wrapped up 2016’s ceremonies this past weekend in Durban. A weeklong celebration of incredible work, the Loeries has a strong agency focus, so it’s a great medium for entering your applications that have coincided with campaigns or marketing objectives. Most importantly for the mobile world, the Mobile Marketing Association of South Africa (MMA) hosts the Smarties awards as part of the Loeries Creative Week. Take a look at the Loeries archives for a little inspiration!

Bookmarks, Loeries, Pendorings and New Gen awards recognise work where success is measurable

A Final Word

While it's great to display app awards on your prized trophy shelf, when it comes to building a successful business, awards are not the be all and end all. Especially in South Africa where the judging criteria fluctuates from one season to the next, winning awards is not the truest reflection of a successful business and certainly shouldn't be the main aim. At the end of the day when all the hype and fanfare is over, the only thing businesses should be bragging about, is successfully fulfilling their clients' objectives.

Awards, Our Work