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Unpacking new Loeries Effective Creativity award

For the 2013 Loerie Awards, a new category, Effective Creativity has been announced. The organisers unpack the reasoning behind the creation of this new category.
Proving the link between creativity and effectiveness with the aid of solid data has been an industry focus for several years now. The Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity introduced a category for Creative Effectiveness in 2011 and the Loeries is following international best practice. In 2011, the Cannes Grand Prix winner was Walker's with its Sandwich campaign; in 2012, the Grand Prix went to Axe. "If Cannes has taught me one thing, it is that creativity drives effectiveness," Coca Cola's Jonathan Mildenhall said in the marketing campaign for the 2012 festival. "You cannot have one without the other. That knowledge has been instrumental to my career."

The new category differs from the Apex Awards in three ways:
  1. To be eligible to enter the Loeries Effective Creativity category, a campaign must have won a Loerie in the past two years. That means winners from 2012 and 2011 are eligible, including Bronze, Silver, Gold and Grand Prix.
  2. While the Apex Awards judge campaigns based on proven effectiveness, creativity is not a criterion for winning. There is a strong correlation between campaigns that have won Loeries and Apex Awards, but winning a Loerie is not a requirement.
  3. The Apex Awards focus on above-the-line advertising. Any Loerie-winning piece of work regardless of category is eligible to enter this award, if the agency can demonstrate that it achieved business results.

Need time to assess

The Loerie flighting deadline this year was 31 May 2012. This means all work that flighted right up to that day was eligible and clearly, it is not possible to provide results for a campaign that only flighted the day before. While the Loeries judging takes five factors into account: innovation, quality of execution; relevance to the brand, target market and chosen medium - actual data may not be available at the time of judging. Now the organisers are giving agencies and brands, the opportunity to show the results of their award-winning work, for up to two years after the original Loerie award.

Not all campaigns are equally effective, just as all ideas are not equally worthy of Gold, Silver or Bronze. The Loeries has always been about awarding the most innovative ideas based on relevance to the brand, the target market and the medium. Though business results are important to what it is promoting - the value of creativity - they are not a criterion for winning an award. This new category recognizes those Loerie-winning campaigns that achieved exceptional returns for brands.

Winning campaigns can be reassessed

The purpose of this award is to assess campaigns that have already been judged creative - innovative, fresh and relevant. Because the flighting deadline for Loeries entries does not allow enough time to compile a case study based on results, it makes sense to enter award-winning campaigns the following year. Entries will be open to any Loerie winning campaign from the past two years.

Creativeness is effective

The creativity vs effectiveness debate has long been settled. In his recent book, 'The Case for Creativity', James Hurman has analysed two decades' evidence of the link between creativity and commercial success and has proven that:
  • More creative advertising is more effective advertising
  • More creative advertising agencies are more effective agencies
  • More creative businesses are more successful businesses
By adding the Loeries voice to the fact that outstanding creative communication is also effective communication, the award hopes to strengthen the entire brand communication industry, contribute to higher standards and drive better business returns.

Crafting a compelling case study takes time. The organisers hope that the Loeries winners from 2011 and 2012 have already started pulling the data and drafting those graphs and they look forward to seeing the first winners of the Effective Creativity award on stage next year.

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