The AdFocus Awards will be held at The Forum in Bryanston, Johannesburg, on Wednesday 25 November 2009, with its theme of “Surviving the recession.”
Advertising Agency of the Year; Media Agency of the Year; Branding & Design Agency of the Year; Digital Agency of the Year; African Agency Network of the Year; Effective Advertising Award; Lifetime Achievement Award; Industry Leader Award; New Broom for exciting young talent
Yvonne Johnston, chairperson; Ross Chowles, creative director of the Jupiter Drawing Room Cape Town; John Dixon, CEO of Draftfcb SA; Harry Herber, MD of the MediaShop; John Little, former MD of Leo Burnett SA and Ogilvy Johannesburg, now consultant on African networks; Festus Masekwameng, Loerie Awards chairperson; Ivan Moroke, MD of Yellowwood Brand Architects; Odette Roper, MD of the Association for Communication & Advertising; Mohale Ralebitso, group marketing executive for Absa; Nicola Rule, KFC's chief marketing officer; Marc Taback, CEO of Initiative Media; Neil van der Weele, former head of Draftfcb's Asian digital design project, now independent.
The AdFocus Annual, relaunched last year and due for publication in November, has a shift in editorial focus. In keeping with the chosen theme, this year's content will examine how advertising and related industries have managed their businesses in an environment where reduced ad spend has become the norm.
The unthinking reaction of most businesses to the fiscal bite has been to cut back on advertising and marketing until the economy shows signs of improvement. There are, however, many who believe in a contrary approach. Their thinking is that there is no better time to invest in marketing and advertising to steal the march on competitors ahead of an inevitable upswing.
As FM AdFocus editor David Furlonger explains, “we will offer real examples of how strategies have succeeded and sometimes failed - and why.”
Such proactive and practical advice will prove invaluable to companies that are busy drawing up their 2010 public relations, branding, design and advertising budgets and strategies. The publication will also feature a “how to” section in which a panel of marketing and advertising gurus applies its skills to local and multinational companies that are battling to survive the recession.
“These virtual case studies will offer fascinating insight for other companies facing current or potential difficulties,” says Furlonger.
The advertising landscape
Allied to a showcase of award winners - including some new awards - AdFocus will look at the advertising landscape both domestically and internationally, considering pertinent issues and campaign successes and failures.
This year's rankings will be calculated in terms of new criteria “designed to eliminate the ambiguity that has bedevilled most rankings in the past”, says Furlonger.
The best creative agencies, busiest agencies, most effective agencies and top campaigns in various disciplines will be featured. The 2009 Loerie Award winners will be included, along with winners of all top awards. For the benefit of the FM's target audience, various corporate profiles will be included in the mix, along with brief agency profiles and relevant contact information.
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I’m sure Marketers and Agencies would appreciate further clarity on winning criteria and possibly external auditors in 2010 and beyond.