For campaign work, it wasn't a great year for U.S. contenders at the Festival of Media Global Conference, which convened earlier this week in Montreux, Switzerland. Of the 32 shortlisted entries (the most of any country), none came out on top. By nation, Norway and Australia topped the winners list, with three wins each.
The Coca-Cola Company took one of the festival's top prizes, however, being named Advertiser of the Year. WPP’s MediaCom was named the festival's Agency Network of the Year, while Starcom Australia took Agency of the Year honors.
The awards were issued at a Tuesday night gala awards ceremony in Montreux. The Advertiser, Network and Agency of the Year prizes all acknowledged general excellence in the use of media and marketing.
Commenting on the results, Charlie Crowe, founder of the Festival of Media and CEO of its parent company C Squared, stated: “We’ve seen some outstandingly good pieces of work this year, while at the same time gathering real insight into where the sector’s weaknesses lie. The fact that no American entries won [for campaign work] should act as a wake-up call for the world’s biggest advertising market.”
MediaCom Norway was awarded the Campaign of the Year award, for a campaign entitled “Tea Time: Muslims, Your Nice Neighbor Next Door.” It was created for Norway’s Anti-Racism Centre. It also won for both The Public Service Award and Best Communications Strategy categories.
For the first time, the festival cited two winners in the Best Experiential Campaign category. MediaCom Israel won for their “Danger! Dog Poop” campaign, created for Mokesh, the coalition for a mine-free Israel. Ikon Communications also won in the category for their “Share a Coke” campaign created for Coca-Cola. According to festival officials, the judges noted how far experiential strategies have developed since the more stunt-focused campaigns of previous years -- a sign that experiential campaigns are more central to brand strategies.
The Creative Use of Media Award went to MEC India in collaboration with Bates India for a campaign for client Colgate called Night Hammer. The Effectiveness Award was won by MediaCom China for a campaign entitled Polident Bridges the Generation Gap. WPP’s Ogilvy France won for Best Use of the Digital Landscape, for a campaign called Le Club Perrier.
MediaCom Germany (which shared credit with Brainpool Artist & Content Services and Magic Moments) won for Best Targeted Campaign for an effort entitled The Office War on behalf of client NERF.
The Media Accelerator Program, a competition among new media entries, was won by VideoHub, a digital platform that monitors online video and matches it commercials, content and audiences to maximize brand impact.
The winners were chosen by a team of over 80 judges from among 870 entries, with the shortlists incorporating more than 70 companies and 100 brands from over 20 countries.
Other winners included:
Best Use of Mobile: OMD Denmark/DDB Denmark for McDonald's.
Best Social Media Campaign: “Killzone 3” from Manning Gottlieb OMD for PlayStation.
Best Engagement Strategy: Starcom MediaVest Group (with credit to MS&L, Tattoo and Procter & Gamble) for Olay in United Arab Emirates.
Best Use of Content: SMG (with credit to The Coca-Cola Co., Liquid Thread Mexico, Pixel Mexico, Stereosonique Films) for Ciel.
Best Use of Emerging Technology: Maxus Bangalore (with credit to Titan, KRDS, Kinetic) for Titan HTSE (India).
Best Contribution to a Campaign by a Media Company: Gemini TV India (with credit to Mindshare) for Lux.
Best Entertainment Platform: SMG (with credit to The Media Mix, WTFN, Kelly Racing, Seven Network) for Shannon’s (Australia).