One man one vote one timeWhoohaah Chris
As usual you tell it like it is!
This going to stir the proverbial hornets nest! David Ogilvy did say, it isn't creative unless it sells. We are going to hear arguments that support the premise that award winning ads sell, and the counter to that.
I woud love to hear from experienced marketers and brand managers whether they really honestly believe that award winning work sells their products.
Many agencies have set themselves up on the back of being award winning. I see so many adds for new creatives demanding award winners only need apply. The industry has become obsessed with awards and that is your very point.
I have had a long career in the industry producing work that has sold a lot of my clients products. Yes, I have won awards in the process, but my first endeavour has always been to sell on behalf of my clients.
I look forward with great interest, to the oncoming arguments!
Grant ShippeyI would love to see a correlation between "award winning work" and actual objectives met. Perhaps some larger brands, with a portfolio of campaigns, should do the exercise.
Or even put more simply. Award Winning campaign, Sales up or Sales down (relatively of course).
Scott ScottHere we going regarding the link between award-winning work and ROI
Andrea DesfargesAs a PR Director at an Ad agency, I've seen how client's view awards as a sign of what you can do for them. They have no idea what the Loeries are or how they work - and they don't care. They just want an idication that their money is being well spent. Most of them don't understand marketing themselves. Tired of the C word. Creative.
Couch ZambaneI'd like to put a word in for consumers and advertising industry outsiders - the so-called "general public"...
We may not have an intimate understanding of the industry, but we definitely have views beyond ad likes and dislikes. Advertisers are just failing to value our opinions and engage us in a conversation. When last did an advertising award seriously incorporate the opinions of its intended consumers? We are not as passive and apathetic as you think. Don't forget who pays your bills.
You're right. The advertising industry should catch a wake up!
Anton CroneHi Chris,
Good to read your opinion piece, but it does not put a very good argument forward.
Advertising is not the only industry that enters award shows. Certainly within the arts and media field they are very common, and one can argue positively that they improve the standard of work immensely and thereby engage audiences. Look at the Academy Awards and many other respected film awards, then the Pulitzers, Man Booker Prize and so on. Where would this work be without them?
Likewise, the value of an advertising award show is to improve the standard of work to engage audiences. By and large, the big ad award shows do that. Imagine the level of advertising WITHOUT them. It would be abysmal. Far, far worse than the standard we see today.
You say in your opening statement: "The only possible justification for an event such as the annual Loerie Awards is that it gives the people who work in advertising agencies an opportunity to escape the daily grind of watching creativity stifled by commercial interests."
If it were not for the Loeries, there would be far, far fewer creative people in the industry because creativity wouldn't be stifled - it would hardly exist. Again, imagine the standard of local advertising then.
The Loeries is far from perfect. What that awards show and agencies can do to improve the level advertising would require a separate opinion piece. But having no other benefits than escaping the daily grind and partying up a storm? far from the truth.
Simone PutermanActually, I saw the Musica "Flo Browser" in Musica at The Zone@Rosebank. I just can't remember when exactly I saw it but I think it was after last year's ad award season.
I couldn't work out whether your attack was on the value of creativity in communication or whether it was simply just a rant on the perceived imperfections of the Loeries?
Anyone who has travelled around the world can tell you that South Africa, consistently, has produced better advertising than most other countries. To produce something that is entertaining is a token of respect to the person whose daily life you are interrupting. To make it memorable, is a responsibility to your client. I would argue that if the Loeries did not exist, South Africa would not have an ad industry of quality.
Sure, it has plenty of imperfections. Ego is an awful byproduct of the creative industry. But not having a benchmark of creativity will completely drain the media of interestingness.
Others, like Charl Thom, have powerfully argued and demonstrated the link between creativity and ROI. I will point out two final observations:
Last year, when our agency won a gold lion for film at Cannes, it opened up a flood of interested agency professionals who wanted to come and work with us. Not just creatives, great account people and planners who saw our work, liked it, and wanted to be part of that. And you can only have a great agency if you can attract great people.
Finally, every year, around the world, screenings of the Cannes finalists and winners attract queues of everyday people, willing to pay money to watch an hour and a half's worth of advertising.
That is something worth thinking about.
Darren MckayWhat a load of kak. I wonder how many people have even taken notice of the price of 125g of cottage cheese in what is deemed to be the most effective advertising from Checkers or PnP? Now, I wonder (in percentages, chris) how many people have counted the number of times Floyd changed his outfit in that really awesome Santam ad? I will put my money on the latter. Purely because people want to be rescued from their daily grind. They want to count floyds outfits, they want to snigger at Nando's flamable humour, It's continously striving for the highest level of creativity that allows most good creatives to help brands see avenues and gaps where most brand manager cannot. Most brand managers do a fantastic annual report but have no clue on how to create a magical interpretation of their brief. Award shows keep the creative juices flowing. Without them Chris, I'm afraid we'll all end up like you. Very sad indeed. Long live the "pat on the back" for great creative thinking.