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Growing from strength to strength

With the Advertising Media Association of Southern Africa (AMASA) Awards shortlist released and the awards function taking place on 25 October, the excitement is mounting.
Growing from strength to strength

This year the Award entries nearly doubled on last year’s entries of 95 to 170. This, says Wayne Bishop, head of the AMASA Awards, is phenomenal and shows that media agencies are getting a seat at the client’s table. “I am humbled by how well and strong the Awards have become over the last two to three years.”

He explains that the Awards were introduced to launch a larger celebration of industry work, building on the famous Roger Garlick Awards from previous years and to bring in new categories, but the other reason was to raise the media agency within the industry.”

This year’s entries are also a nice spread across the board from clients and agencies. “The agencies range from design agencies to PR and creative agencies. The result is the best integrated campaign awards were all hotly contested.”

The entries demonstrated a good use of technology. “It is great that the agencies are thinking like this. The best online and best social media awards were very well supported. In terms of scores, the best branded content campaign award and best use of technology scored exceptionally high.”

While he admits that some of the categories were not up to scratch and that this affected the overall scores, he believes the Awards are getting there. “There is also still a lack of understanding of what category to enter into but even this has improved.”

When it came to the entries themselves, he says generally the market struggles with constructing meaningful insights. “Our ideas are good, our strategies solid, but we cannot construct insights very well. We need an insights masters class and AMASA is thinking of bringing an expert out.”

A new category is the best trade marketing campaign. While the scores in the awards are not high, Bishop says some finalists did very well. “This is a category that we would like to see grow year-on-year. Trade marketing gives clients a massive return.”

There were also some surprises this year. “The IEC campaign for the 2016 municipal elections is entered into multiple categories and is a great example of media and digital agency collaboration.”

Both Standard Bank and Nedbank have multiple entries and it is good to see that these brands really pushed their agencies. “It is great that these two brands have entered but we were also disappointed that FNB, a previous winner, did not enter the Awards this year.” Another surprise was that there were no entries from the agencies in the Publicis Group.

What was great to see was the creative agencies coming into the Awards with campaigns that are media specific. “They understand the importance of the results and it is great to see them testing the efficacy of these campaigns.”

The shortlist comprises 61 and it will now be for the 22 judges to go through these and pull out the gold winners. The awards take place at the Montecasino Ballroom, in Montecasino, Fourways, Gauteng.

“The Awards are a highly prestigious event and sees the cream of the crop of the media industry recognised for their work. This year we have increased the number of seats due to the demand.”

View the finalists here.

About Danette Breitenbach

Danette Breitenbach is a marketing & media editor at Previously she freelanced in the marketing and media sector, including for Bizcommunity. She was editor and publisher of AdVantage, the publication that served the marketing, media and advertising industry in southern Africa. She has worked extensively in print media, mainly B2B. She has a Masters in Financial Journalism from Wits.
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