The shortlist comprises three agencies from Northern Ireland, five from Glasgow, four agencies from London and five from the regions.
The judging panel chose the shortlist from among 48 entries. The shortlisted agencies go through to a second round of judging by a panel of ten clients, chaired by Lord Heseltine, the chairman of Campaign's publisher, Haymarket.
Agencies entering the awards must prove how their communications strategies have had a positive effect on the client's business.
The awards are jointly sponsored by Thinkbox and UTV and part-sponsored by the World Advertising Research Centre, Independent News and Media and Campaign.