Manning Gottlieb OMD and Age UK take Grand Prix in Thinkbox TV Planning Awards

Manning Gottlieb OMD and Age UK have this afternoon been awarded the Grand Prix in the 2016 Thinkbox TV Planning Awards, run in association with Campaign and Media Week.

Gogglebox characters June and Leon reacted, live and unscripted, to Age UK’s ad
Gogglebox characters June and Leon reacted, live and unscripted, to Age UK’s ad

The trophy was given for a collaboration that included partnering with John Lewis’ "Man on the moon" Christmas campaign and had Gogglebox characters June and Leon react, live and unscripted, to Age UK’s DRTV ad.

The Age UK campaign also won top prize in the "Best use of TV AND" category, in which entries give evidence that TV works best in an integrated communications plan. The Grand Prix was chosen from among category winners.

Manning Gottlieb OMD has been shortlisted 14 times and won seven TV Planning Awards since 2012.

The other 2016 category winners are:

Best use of TV innovation: PHD and Expedia

Best newcomer to TV: PHD and Purplebricks

Best ongoing use of TV: UM Birmingham and Gtech

Best use of sponsorship: the7stars and Gumtree 

Best use of content: Vizeum and Budweiser

Best use of low budget: MediaCom and Universal Music

Two entries are highly commended: 

Best use of content: OMD for McDonald’s

Best use of TV AND: PHD and AMV BBDO for Sainsbury’s

The awards, which recognise and celebrate the best in TV planning, were announced at an afternoon ceremony at One Marylebone today, compèred by comedian Aisling Bea. 

Manning Gottlieb OMD’s work for Age UK won Grand Prix-worthy praise from the judges. "From a client point of view, this was the clear winner by far," said Ian Cairns, the head of marketing communications and brand at easyJet. "If someone had done this for my brand, I’d have been blown away."

The campaign was "a really brilliant idea" and the entry "a really good demonstration of shifts in soft and hard metrics," said Matt Willifer, the chief strategy officer at WCRS.

Marianne Hewitt, the head of brand at Age UK, described the campaign’s impact in the entry paper. "It felt like the penny dropped," she said. "When you’re just becoming part of popular culture and you’re included in conversations, you know something has gone really, really right."

The 17 TV Planning Awards judges for 2016 also included Bobi Carley, the UK commercial director at Disney; Sarah Mansfield, the VP global media Europe and Americas at Unilever; Matt Andrews, the chief strategy officer at Mindshare; and Verica Djurdjevic, the managing director of PHD.

Last year’s Grand Prix went to PHD and Drum, for The Lego Movie ad break campaign for Warner Bros.

Watch the highlights from the night...