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From the 13th Annual Shorty Awards


Entered in Business to Business

About this entry

Cotton Council International (CCI) is the U.S. export arm charged with promoting U.S. cotton, branded COTTON USA™, globally.


COTTON USA set out to expand its efforts targeting global mills and manufacturers, located in Vietnam, China, Pakistan, Turkey, Thailand, Bangladesh, India, Taiwan, Korea, Japan and Indonesia, to help their decision makers understand U.S. cotton’s positive impact on their operations’ bottom lines—specifically compared to other global cottons.


In 2020, this need for mills and manufacturers to maximize operational value was compounded by the effects of COVID-19. The pandemic upended the cotton supply chain, and mills and manufacturers required strategies and tools to not only emerge, but also secure the future of their operations.


Now more than ever, as the cotton the world trusts, we needed to reinforce U.S. cotton’s premium value through its unrivaled expertise and resources that together give mills and manufacturers a long-term competitive edge.


To do this, we developed COTTON USA SOLUTIONS™, the cotton supply chain’s first-of-its-kind technical consultancy program that helps mills and manufacturers achieve greater productivity, process efficiency and ultimately profit for their businesses. The program launched with five cutting-edge offerings—or solutions—designed to transform operations profitability by optimizing a mill’s use of U.S. cotton.


Our objectives were:

  1. Engage prospects with the program by increasing website traffic by 2%
  2. Recruit qualified prospects by increasing leads for U.S. cotton by 3%
  3. Grow market share of U.S. cotton directly through the program by increasing bale purchases by X%*

*Confidential section.

Why does this entry deserve to win?

COTTON USA’s annual benchmarking research revealed key observations about our target—decision makers at global mills and manufacturers:

How could we enhance the value of a consultancy with the premium value of COTTON USA to provide solutions for mills and manufacturers? We identified three strategies:


  1. Talk to decision makers on their own terms. Leading mills and manufacturers are experts in their own right. We needed to approach them through a platform that positioned COTTON USA as a strategic partner, with proven data and practices that demonstrate how optimizing the use of U.S. cotton results in delivering profit.  
  2. Create online connection points for a virtual world. COVID-19 travel bans and in-person meeting restrictions prohibited COTTON USA from engaging decision makers in-person. We had to identify online connection points that still enabled us to generate business value.
  3. Reinforce thought leadership to build credibility. COTTON USA is recognized as a supply chain leader. We had to harness COTTON USA’s in-house, technical experts along with its data-informed resources to convince decision makers to choose U.S. cotton for their businesses—especially amid the uncertainty of a global pandemic.

We saw an opportunity for COTTON USA to bring together its decades of experience, global knowledge and unrivaled research in a first-of-its-kind technical consultancy for the cotton supply chain—COTTON USA SOLUTIONS™.


The consultancy launched with five cutting-edge “solutions” designed to improve mill and manufacturer productivity and ultimately profitability with U.S. cotton.


  1. Mill Studies – Proprietary studies conducted by COTTON USA
  2. Technical Seminars – Expert sessions teaching how to buy, use and optimize U.S. cotton
  3. Mill Exchange Program – Executive tours and forums with COTTON USA™ licensee mills
  4. 1:1 Mill Consults – Personalized, virtual or in-person, in-depth mill examination
  5. COTTON USA Mill Mastery™ Course – Study course featuring a collection of advanced practices


To engage decision makers with these business-transforming solutions, we leveraged these tactics:


Establish a Business-Building Content Hub

We created the COTTON USA SOLUTIONS™ hub to drive our audience to learn more, preview offerings and apply to join.


Announce through Earned Media Relations

Through targeted media relations, we secured earned media in trade and industry publications to generate credible awareness of the new program and drive interest among key prospects—with high-profile coverage in Sourcing Journal, Textile World, Fibre2Fashion and more.


Connect at Virtual Events

To coincide with media relations efforts, we introduced the program at 10+ virtual events and conferences, establishing virtual booths dedicated to connecting personally with mills and manufacturers in the new virtual supply chain.


Amplify across Digital Media

We amplified content—videos, data studies, testimonials—across global channels, including LinkedIn, Facebook, digital video and email, to break through with decision makers at digital connection points. Amplifying content across the digital ecosystem generated credibility of the program’s expertise and resources at scale.


*See confidential



Entrant Company / Organization Name

Cramer-Krasselt, Cotton Council International


Entry Credits