Awards vs marketshare

18th June 2015

Accolades and awards are coveted to the point of obsession in the world of advertising, but how much do clients care and, more importantly, has an award win ever resulted in a later upsurge in product sales?

It’s so expensive to enter advertising awards festivals, and because the big networks can afford to make countless entries, is it really a case of those with the fattest wallets win? Can one assume that creative excellence is not necessarily the true victor if it isn’t an even playing field?

To quote Avi Dan, “The irony to the whole approach of basing an agency’s positioning on winning awards is that when an agency measures the quality of its work by how many awards it wins – and not through the lens of business results – it misses the point.” The cynic in me tends to concur with Mr. Dan; surely the only thing that matters is market share? Effectiveness over beauty every time, no?

Then we run into the potentially cruel but obvious ‘nobody outside of the industry cares’. Clients will always care first and foremost about business results, although nobody doubts Mr. Marketing Director enjoys the glamour of the night out and ‘glory by association’. However, we can all agree the general public is totally oblivious to all the mid-June South of France revelry. No consumer ever power-walked to their local shopping precinct and purchased a particular chocolate bar after learning the agency responsible for the confectionery’s print work cleaned up at D&AD / NY Festival / Loerie.

Cannes is almost upon us and, all cynicism aside, it is always a delight to see ad world’s geniuses showcasing their artistry! In an industry where people work so very hard I for one believe they should have their moment in the French sun!

It’s just a shame a lowly recruiter such as myself doesn’t get to attend.

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