Close-Up: When an awards show turned to crowdsourcing

campaignlive.co.uk, Friday, 12 March 2010 12:00AM

Mark Tutssel reports from the International ANDY Awards, where a unique jury ran the rule over some unique campaigns.

Every year, the International ANDY Awards strive to offer a culturally interesting destination for the world's most outstanding creative talent to convene and judge the best advertising and communications.

This year was the first ever where the jury was crowdsourced. As one of those jurors holed up in New Orleans, I decided to document the judging experience through an "IN and OUT" lens.

"OUT" went the usual list of creative leaders taken solely from major agencies to comprise the jury. "IN" came a first-of-its-kind jury elected by adland. Turning to the wisdom of crowds to choose the jury, the whole industry was, by proxy, involved in choosing the best work in 2010.

The elected jury was diverse, by both practice and geography, including the likes of Mark Waites, a founder of Mother; Nick Law, the chief creative officer at R/GA; Jeff Benjamin, the interactive executive creative director at Crispin Porter & Bogusky; Rei Inamoto, the chief creative officer at AKQA; PJ Pereira, the chief creative officer and co-founder of Pereira & O'Dell; and the artist Shepard Fairey, to name a few.

OUT went some entries that were just "advertising" and didn't connect in today's ever-changing landscape. The jurors' score control pads indicated: 1 = IN, 2 = OUT, 3 = N/A. The 2 button was pounded in every one of the break-out rooms as the jury sieved through 4,000 global entries to find the fresh, future-facing ideas that represent the best in the industry in this complex media world we now operate in.

IN was work that challenged the status quo, defied the category and pointed a compass to the future. OUT were the standard, time- honoured traditional categories. IN were exciting new categories such as: Earned Media - brand communications that create word-of-mouth through unpaid channels, including editorial, social media and PR; Co-Created Campaigns - branded value exchanges where consumers are involved with the brand in generating media for use in consumer campaigns; Make People's Lives Better - programmes created in service of a brand that provide utility and create improved quality of life; Branded Applications and Products - digital applications and real-world products created in service of a brand; and Reset - a category that recognises unique and innovative thinking in all media and defines the demand for new and innovative thinking in our industry.

OUT went work that was really good, but didn't make a statement to the world. IN was work that made you feel jealous and inspired while using all disciplines to connect with people and change the way they think, feel and behave. A few pieces are worth a mention here. The Hyundai "assurance" campaign by Goodby Silverstein & Partners gave people back the faith in the future.

The technological Nike "Chalkbot" by Wieden & Kennedy Portland, which used the road as a canvas, creating messages to fight cancer.

"The best job in the world" by Cummins Nitro, which captured the imagination of the planet.

The highly innovative integrated Shelter "house of cards" campaign by Leo Burnett in London.

The category-defying "Zack Johnson" campaign for Tampax by Burnett in Detroit.

The "Twelpforce" for Best Buy, which gave customers real-time expert technical help in Tweet form.

"We choose the Moon.org" by The Martin Agency, which is a recreation of the four-day mission to the moon in 1969.

The "trillion dollar" campaign for The Zimbabwean, from a country faced with world-record inflation by TBWA\Hunt\Lascaris.

Bartle Bogle Hegarty London's mesmerising film for Johnnie Walker: "The man who walked around the world."

Coke Zero's "Facial Profiler", a program designed to seek out people who share your face, by CP&B.

And, finally, the highly entertaining Canal+ film "the wardrobe" by BETC Euro RSCG.

This industry is changing with rapid velocity. New channels are being created by the day. Keeping pace with this rapid technological explosion demands teamwork. Fusing together the best creative minds from all disciplines in union around business problems.

The brands with the best stories get to play a long-term role in people's lives, acting as a badge, a community, an entertainer and an information resource. With the number of channels multiplying daily, it has never been easier for good news to spread like wildfire and weave brands into the social fabric.

The "crowdsourced" jury had its flaws and critics during the election process, but I am sure they will be ironed out in the future.

Finally, The Big Easy provided a great backdrop for this year's final judging. It is evident that the Who Dat Nation is rebuilding, fuelled by their Super Bowl success. The spirit of "can do" is alive and kicking. They look to the future with hope.

The ANDYs have always sought to reward bravery and daring and future-facing ideas that break the mould and move the industry forward. So innovative, interesting, intelligent, interactive, integrated, inspired ideas will always be IN.

- Mark Tutssel is the global chief creative officer of Leo Burnett.

This article was first published on campaignlive.co.uk

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