While we saw a slight increase in entries this year, the big news was the growth in online and non-traditional advertising (27%) and integrated campaigns (34%).
“We’re seeing more and more multimedia campaigns and bigger ideas that can work with multiple touch points,” said Christina Yu, vice president, creative director of Lowe Roche in Toronto, Canada.
The best method for presenting these bigger ideas to a jury, however, is still evolving. “There should be a cash award for the agency that figures out how to present its integrated and interactive work in less than two minutes,” said Mike Hughes, president and creative director at The Martin Agency in Richmond, Virginia. “Too often, it’s hard to understand the point of the work and the focus of the idea.”
About this year’s entries, “It was a weak year for television,” said Mark Gross, senior vice president, group creative director at DDB Chicago, Illinois. “Skittles notwithstanding, no television blew
me away or left me ultra-inspired. New media might be stealing TV’s thunder.”
Rob Rich, executive vice president, executive creative director at Publicis in the West in Seattle, Washington, disagreed. “So many people have proclaimed the death of television. It’s just not true. New media options have given the broadcast media some much-needed competition. There’s pressure on TV spots to be more engaging and more entertaining than ever before. This is good.”
When asked what was new, Julie Bowman, group creative director at TracyLocke in Dallas, Texas, was succinct; “The Ray-Ban online video—cool execution. The ‘Free Hugs’ spot from BETC Euro RSCG made me cry.” “I absolutely loved the All Blacks poster,” Gross added. “It was a fantastic original idea.”
While several jurors mentioned the increase in online videos, Bowman found many were rife with self-indulgent editing. “Everything is the director’s cut times ten, and the lack of discipline really hurts the storytelling,” she said.
“Advertising is going to become less sell and more experiential.” —Mark Gross
Also new this year, “More and more agencies are getting involved with product development for their clients,” said Brian Kroening executive creative director, senior vice president BBDO Minneapolis.
Where are we headed in the future? Benjamin Vendramin, senior vice president, group creative director at McCann Erickson, New York, said, “More and more dollars are moving towards the Web, but results will ultimately be what creates the momentum behind the dollars being spent.” “Social networking will change over the next several years, which will make us create work that’s more targeted than we could have ever imagined,” Rich added.
Several jurors also mentioned the rise of the fully integrated agency, but Hughes feels that only a half-dozen agencies are currently doing media-neutral planning and creative executions correctly. “It’s amazing that, in 2007, a lot of shops still seem to be completely built around the 1992 media model,” he said.
“Creative people are now able to express themselves in an infinite array of media,” Kroening concluded. “The only caution is that you still need to start with an idea.”
As in previous years, we employed a two-step jurying system, screening and finals. Due to increasing time constraints, the judges screened much of the radio commercials and online advertising in their own offices prior to arriving in Menlo Park.
“Gaming and social networking have yet to make their true impact.” —Benjamin Vendramin
In our office, they worked in teams of three (Jean Coyne acted as the ninth screening juror due to a last-minute cancellation), screening a third of the television, print and projected entries in one of three halls equipped with broadcast equipment and six rows of tables for print. Print entries were spread out on the tables by category and each juror reviewed the entries independently. Any juror could put an entry into the next round by handing it to a member of our staff. Television, radio, integrated and digital entries were screened by checking an “in” or “out” box on scoring sheets.
After all the entries were screened, we combined the selections from the three teams for finals. During the finals, all eight judges worked as a single team. In one hall, print entries were spread out on tables by category. Two paper cups, one white and one red, with slots cut in the bottom, were placed upside down to the right of each entry, white cups for “in” votes, red cups for “out.” Each juror voted by placing a different colored ceramic tile into the appropriate cup. A check of the tile colors ensured that every judge voted on every single piece.
After all the jurors were finished voting on the print setup, they moved to another hall for a final session of TV, radio, projected images or integrated campaigns. Online advertising was judged on a bank of computers in another location in our office. Again voting was done by each juror checking the “in” or “out” column on the scoring sheets.
Judges were not permitted to vote on projects they were directly involved in. When judges’ pieces were in the finals, Jean or I voted in their stead.
I would like to extend our grateful appreciation to our jurors for their conscientious efforts in selecting our 48th annual exhibition. —Patrick Coyne ca
group creative director
Julie Bowman is a writer, group creative director at TracyLocke in Dallas, Texas. Bowman has over fifteen years experience, most at DDB Dallas until the recent merger with TracyLocke. Her efforts have helped shape accounts like Tabasco, Texas Lottery, Susan G Komen For the Cure, 7-Eleven and more. Bowman has been a member of various mediocre bands, performed stand-up and improv and has, for a ridiculously long time now, been writing a one-woman show. She and her husband, Todd, live in a house they’ve been renovating themselves, but whose completion is evidently a sign of the apocalypse. If it ever actually gets finished, the world will end. Her work has been seen in Archive, Athena Awards, Cannes, Communication Arts, the Kelly Awards and others.
Mimi Cook is a creative director at Apple Inc. located in Cupertino, California. Prior to Apple and the iPhone, Cook worked at Goodby, Silverstein & Partners, Hal Riney & Partners, Foote, Cone & Belding and Chiat/Day. She’s written about beer, wine, airplanes, cars, fashion and an electric toothbrush that performs 31,000 brush-strokes per minute. In addition to being recognized by Cannes, Communication Arts, the Clios, D&AD and The One Show, her work was featured as one of the 50 Best TV Commercials in 50 Years of Advertising by Ad Age, which also honored her as A Woman to Watch. In her spare time, Cook runs the hills of Berkeley, California, tortures her garden, and writes poems about her daughters
senior vice president, group creative director
Mark Gross is senior vice president, group creative director at DDB Chicago, Illinois. At DDB, Gross has risen from art director to group creative director creating campaigns for the agency’s premiere account, Anheuser-Busch. His most notable work is the Bud Light Real Men of Genius campaign, now known for being the most awarded radio campaign in advertising history. His work has been honored by the ANDYs, Art Directors Club, Clios, Cannes, Communication Arts, D&AD, Kinsale Awards, New York Festivals, The One Show, the Radio Mercury Awards and two Grand Prix Radio Lions. With a BFA in advertising design from Syracuse University, Gross began his career in 1990 in New York City designing movie titles and logos for R. Greenberg Associates. He spends his spare time flying a Cessna, running, cooking, painting and spend-ing time with his wife and two children.
president, creative director
The Martin Agency
Mike Hughes is president, creative director at The Martin Agency in Richmond, Virginia. Adweek has called Hughes one of the nine best creative directors in America. Ad Age, on the other hand, has listed The Martin Agency as one of the three best creative agencies in the world. “Which proves,” Hughes says, continued on page 152 “that the rest of the agency is a lot better than I am.” Here’s what Hughes says about their work: “I want us to be known for two things: outstanding strategic ideas and brilliant creative executions. One of the reasons this is such an exciting time to be in this business is that those ideas and executions aren’t limited to traditional media ads.” In 2000, the oldest governing body in the Western Hemisphere, the Virginia General Assembly, named Hughes and his partner, John Adams, the Outstanding Industrialists of the Year. Hughes’s wife, Ginny, teases him a lot about that last title.
senior vice president and creative director
Brian Kroening was senior vice president and creative director at Olson in Minneapolis, Minnesota, at the time of the judging. Now, BBDO Minneapolis has added him to their roster as executive creative director, senior vice president. A graduate of the University of Wisconsin, Kroening moved to Minneapolis in 1988 for a job with Campbell Mithun. For the next nine years he worked on CM clients including Andersen Windows, General Mills and Healthy Choice. He moved to Carmichael Lynch as a senior art director in 1997. Kroening’s clients at CL included American Standard, Formica, Polaris Watercraft and Gibson Guitars. An accomplished guitarist, Kroening’s playing was featured in a Gibson TV commercial. Olson recruited Kroening in 2004 as executive creative director and he helped build a client roster that included Nike Bauer Hockey and PBS.
executive vice president, executive creative director
Rob Rich is the executive vice president, executive creative director at Publicis in the West in Seattle, Washington. Rich worked at many creative boutiques on the east coast before moving to Mullen. A few years later he traveled west to join Publicis. “It was the first agency that seemed ready to stop being an ad agency and start becoming a media agnostic creative shop.” As ECD, Rob manages the office, oversees the creative department, while still carving out time to create work. “When you only manage, you can lose touch with the industry and your creative teams.” Rich’s work has been recognized by every major award show from Cannes, Communication Arts, Clios and The One Show, but accolades from outside the industry equally fire him up. “We love when our work becomes part of culture: watching Jay Leno do a comedy bit based on our T-Mobile spots or having our work displayed in the permanent film collection at the Museum of Modern Art.”
senior vice president, group creative director
Benjamin Vendramin is senior vice president, group creative director at McCann Erickson, New York. Before joining McCann a year ago, he ran his own agency, Goodgoll Vendramin, in his native Toronto. Prior to that he was co-creative director of TBWA\Chiat\Day. A graduate of Ontario College of Art & Design, he began his career as an art director at J. Walter Thompson, first in Toronto and then in New York City. He returned to his hometown to work for TAXI Advertising and, in 2006, was lured back again, to New York. His work has been recognized by all the major award shows including Cannes, Communication Arts and The One Show. Vendramin enjoys balancing his passion for creative with his passion for his family, his wife Susan and their nine-year-old daughter, Isabella.
vice-president, creative director
Christina Yu is vice-president, creative director at Lowe Roche in Toronto, Canada. Yu started her career as an art director at TAXI, where she created memorable campaigns for FLOW 93.5, The Movie Network and Williams-Sonoma. She then joined BBDO, where she was promoted to vice president, creative director after producing award-winning work on brands including FedEx, 7Up and Pepsi. In 2005, she joined Lowe Roche as vice president, creative director. She has been instrumental in exploring new ways to connect with consumers, such as social networks, digital media and CRM. During the course of her career, she has won over 100 major advertising awards, including Cannes, Communication Arts, D&AD and The One Show. In her spare time, she enjoys lavishing attention on her puppy, Ralph, and obsessing over her home renovation.