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IPA Effectiveness Awards 2010: Celebrating 30 years of success

What a huge honour and responsibility it is to be convenor of judges in the year the IPA Effectiveness Awards celebrate their 30th birthday.

That's a significant milestone for a rather significant set of Awards.

The founding fathers set out with a very simple manifesto: "Advertising works and we're going to prove it." And over the three decades that followed, that manifesto has been more than lived up to.

The Awards have become fully established as the leading global symbol of the genuine effectiveness of advertising. As they have developed, the focus has shifted to a showcase for the commercial power of great marketing and communications ideas. This is undoubtedly what sets the IPA Effectiveness Awards apart - no other Awards demand such depth of proof of the true commercial value of ideas, tasking each entry with demonstrating how it has delivered profits beyond the full costs of the marketing campaigns. This is never a simple task, and the brilliance and power of a great many of the winning papers over the years has been little short of breathtaking. This year's body of work is no exception.

In 2010, we have had the largest number of entries for 16 years, coming from as far afield as India, Singapore and Hong Kong. This alone illustrates an industry in a good shape and with an appetite to continue to demonstrate its value. But it's the wonderful mix of winners that really highlights how broad and exciting the world of "advertising" is today. Long-terms papers such as HSBC sit alongside a wealth of short-term recession-busting entries for brands such as Heinz and Waitrose. There are big-brand ideas such as Sainsbury's "fiver" campaign, and big-brand executions, such as The O2 sponsorship. New learnings are also in abundance, particularly Orange's "online cost-per-sale" analysis, Wispa's mobilisation of Facebook fans, and TDA Teacher Recruitment's intelligent "pinball" media model.

But within all this fantastic new-media thinking and creativity, the "big TV ad" still has life in it yet. Whether it's the brilliant Hovis romp through the ages or T-Mobile's dance spectacular, the power of a big emotional idea to capture the nation and start conversations remains second to none.

So, 30 years on, the IPA Effectiveness Awards remain a peerless source of ideas, inspiration and proof that advertising in all its forms is one of the most transformative investments any business can make.

- David Golding, Convenor of judges. Founding partner, Adam & Eve.

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