Eschewing the fuzzy math, the Awards Report provides a transparent accounting of who won what at the major international shows, via the patented Raw list. The Cooked list provides a simple weighted tally reflecting Gold, Silver, Bronze and Grand Prix wins (and Cannes awards valued at a slight premium). This year, we've added single media shows, the Kelly Awards and the Radio Mercury Awards to the list of shows used to derive our overall scores, and added radio to our listings of Top Work. Also new this year, The Winners List-the list of the most lauded agencies, networks, advertisers and production companies-is presented on a handy large format poster that you can pull out, obsess over or pretend you don't care about until next spring.
But let's face it, you do care. Why? The creative head of this year's (and last year's, and the year before that's) most award-winning agency, Alex Bogusky, addresses that question and muses on evaluating great work in this issue (see p. 6). Bogusky makes the point that awards-that is, awards based on creative merits-are more relevant beyond the realm of creative recruiting as clients recognize the critical role of pure creativity in the opt-in marketing universe.
Predictably, CP+B dominated the Raw and Cooked by a significant margin. At the risk of unleashing a new round of whiny emails from the sour grapes contingent, it's worth noting that the agency deserves credit for its particular feat of awards chart topping. Rather than a one-spot cleanup, the agency won awards across client and genre, with many of its wins coming in interactive and integrated categories. Of course "Subservient Chicken," which has had its second go-round on the awards circuit, garnered multiple nods, but the agency also won for Virgin Atlantic, Mini, American Legacy Foundation, Molson, Method and Borders. Not a bad spread.
In the network race, TBWA emerged victorious with the customary punishing performance of the Paris awards factory and the emergence of San Francisco as a creative engine. On the client side of that story, adidas trumped its athletic goods adversary-and every other marketer-to top the advertiser awards tally. Another, more poignant addition to this year's top ten agencies ranking was Fallon/New York. In the wake of the news that the office would close and its spiritual leaders would be departing to launch their own venture, it was easy to lose sight of how successful the agency had been at doing great creative and getting results for its clients. The awards success reminds us in a tangible way.
So, clearly, all the awards in the world don't change some hard facts about this business. They also won't do much for those unwilling to address the realities of the aforementioned changing consumer world. Perhaps Noam Murro, this year's most awarded director (see p.38) provides the best perspective on ad awards: "To tell you one thing for sure, my mother's never heard of any of them."