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Calling all CPG Innovators: Join the Product of the Year Awards Family

40,000 Shoppers Can’t Be Wrong!


Do you have an innovative new product you want customers to know about? Something unique you think drug store retailers should add to their inventory?

If so, enter the 2022 Product of the Year Awards and get on the road to increasing sales, expanding distribution, and driving brand awareness with massive media coverage. The deadline is September 30, 2021 — so don’t delay!

“There’s just nothing more meaningful than a recommendation of 40,000 consumers to help retailers and shoppers alike find the best, most innovative new products on the market,” Mike Nolan, CEO of Product of the Year, says.

What is POY?
Product of the Year is the largest consumer-voted award for product innovation.

“It was created over 30 years ago to champion new product innovation and give shoppers a shortcut to the very best new products on the market. It’s not only an internationally recognized award but a proven ROI tool, too. We see manufacturers come back year after year, the benefits are huge,” Nolan explains. 

What makes the award unique, and so effective, is that it is research-based recognition. Winners are determined by the votes of 40,000 consumers in a nationally representative study conducted by Kantar, a global leader in consumer research.

“Kantar independently finds those 40,000 individuals coast-to-coast, and they vote on the products entered into the awards using criteria such as appeal, recommendation and satisfaction,” Nolan explains. “Consumers are at the heart of everything we do. We see ourselves almost as an America’s Got Talent for products sold in drug stores.” 

Why Enter?
Both shoppers and retailers know what Product of the Year stands for — which means it can build awareness of your new products and elevate your entire brand. You’ll increase sales. Expand distribution. 

And data shows that companies can engender consumer trust by using the POY logo across all of their marketing channels.

“With a proven ROI, Product of the Year is trusted by shoppers, with 50 percent more likely to buy a product featuring the POY logo,” Nolan says. “More than 50 percent of shoppers overall agree they would be more likely to purchase a new product if it was endorsed by the Product of the Year logo.1 And the numbers are even higher for Walmart and Target shoppers.1 

What Are the Benefits of Winning? 
The benefits of garnering a Product of the Year Award extend to consumers, retailers and CPG companies alike.

“Winners have found a myriad of ways to benefit from POY over the past 30 years,” reports Nolan, who highlights three key benefits all Product of the Year winners are guaranteed: 

*It pays for itself. As part of their winners’ package, brands are included in a POY-executed plan that delivers expansive, ongoing national and regional media coverage that includes placements in national and regional broadcast, consumer and trade media outlets; social media and influencer campaigns; plus product giveaways and more.

“Our 2021 winners have already received millions of quality media impressions with many more placements on the way. With this level of media exposure for our winners, we really do pay for ourselves.” 

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*A two-year licensing agreement granting unlimited usage of the POY seal on all marketing materials. “This is the core benefit of the program with a proven track record of lifting sales and distribution growth,” Nolan says. 

*A comprehensive research analysis of the Kantar consumer survey. The report includes information about each product’s performance across measures including appeal, satisfaction, advocacy, purchase interest and more.

Winning CPG companies, and by extension, the retailers who carry the award-winning products, also benefit.

“The Product of the Year Award positions CPG companies as the innovative leader in their category,” Nolan says. “It is a powerful merchandising program for marketers, giving their new product an edge against the competition.

Past POY winners can attest to the benefits an award brings.

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“While we were thrilled with the reception this product and technology received at launch, we wanted to amplify that message,” says Ericka Dirkmaat, Senior Brand Manager, Remington Haircare, when asked about how the company leveraged the 2021 POY Award it won for the REMINGTON® Pro 1” Multi-Styler with Twist & CurlTM Technology. “In the competitive hair styling market, the Product of the Year Award allowed us to extend our message, gave consumers a reason to believe and provided us a unique way to tell consumers about this winning innovation.” 

Independent data confirms the benefits winning companies enjoy.

Product of the Year USA winners outperform category sales performance by 38.1%3; that the Product of the Year logo is 25% more effective on a package than the word “New”2; and that coupon redemption consideration increased 24% when the Product of the Year logo was featured in a Free Standing Insert (FSI)4.

“To reap the benefits winning Product of the Year delivers, you have to enter,” Nolan says. “So, make sure you take the steps to put your product in the running today.” 

What Products Qualify?
For the 2022 awards, entries are accepted from products launched after January 1st, 2020. Products must demonstrate meaningful consumer innovation in one of the following areas: function, design, packaging, ingredients. Product of the Year encourages you to reach out to them to help determine your product's eligibility.

For more information on how to enter and the benefits of winning, visit

1Kantar Survey, June 2021
2 2021 Product of the Year PR Stats
Winner’s Sales Data
4 Google Survey


    Products that demonstrate innovations in design, function, packaging, ingredients or marketing and launched after January 1, 2020 are eligible to be entered in the 2022 Product of the Year Awards; the entry deadline is September 30, 2021. For more information on how to enter, visit

Thinking of becoming a Product of the Year nominee?  Check out what you need to know to enter, plus see 2021's winners here.