The art of being effective at the business of effectiveness

The art of being effective at the business of effectiveness

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For the fifth year running our Managing Partner Richard Robinson was invited to judge the EACA Euro Effies – considered Europe’s annual gold standard of marketing effectiveness.

Twenty outstanding EFFIE winners were announced with the Grand Prix awarded to DDB Berlin for Deutsche Telekom’s ‘Travel and Surf’ campaign and Grey Group EMEA reclaiming Agency of the Year.

With robust debate and strong opinion riveting judging conversation, Richard spotted a number of striking insights.  In no particular order, he writes about his top five:

 

THE BIGGER YOUR OBJECTIVE. THE BETTER YOUR PRIZE.

DBB’s Grand Prix win was tremendous, but, the big story was Grey, an agency that covets effectiveness so much that it proudly claims to have been ‘famously effective since 1917’.

However, 2014 saw Grey lose position to Thjnk raising questions from many whether it had stepped away from its traditional heartland, and what its future might hold.

On the night Grey, quite literally, tore up the record book with wins for United Biscuits, Lenor, Gillette, Febreeze, Fairy Liquid, Bolia.com and Deichmann Shoes, rewriting what an effective agency network looks like. It landed a remarkable 50.9% of total points, well over twice the combined scores of the second and third placed agencies, and proof-pointed the adage that the sum of the parts is always greater than the whole.

While many focused on winning Gold in a single category, Grey plotted the most effective course to winning the biggest prize of all, Agency Network of the Year, and its show of strength is a case study in always setting your sights higher.

 

INVEST IN WINNING, AND KNOW WHAT IT TAKES TO WIN.

The key to winning an Euro EFFIE is no secret; prove your campaign ran in more than one European country and demonstrate quantifiable success in the markets.

Curiously, many potentially-excellent entries were hampered by a lack of a clear causal link between objectives and outcomes, or, inclusion of a second country as a make-weight with no evidence of results.

In my opinion, winners such as TMW Unlimited for Durex’s ‘Turn on to turn off’ or Zenith Optimedia for Toyota Aygo’s ‘Go fun yourself’ showed the time, energy and data invested in proving their worth, was time well spent.

 

THE GAP BETWEEN COMMERCIAL AND SOCIAL SUCCESS IS NARROWING.

Previous years have seen fierce debate from jurors on the use of social media success to quantify commercial objectives.

To my mind, it’s pointless to substitute one for the other unless the campaign sets out with a stated goal to deliver online social-success.

If commercial success is the goal, then commercial results are needed, likewise if social media success is the goal, then evidence of outstanding social media likes, shares and comments from European-based consumers is the way to go.

This year saw a significantly greater use of digital results, and more than that, we saw significantly better crafted campaign objectives that began to liberate and validate the use of these results. For example, Ogilvy & Mather’s great work for Prince’s biscuits and Uncle Grey’s campaign for Bolia.com.

Full integration of objectives and results has yet to happen, but 2015 developments are exciting and the stage is now set for brands and agencies to pull ahead of competitors by cracking this code.

 

DOES CREATIVITY STILL EQUAL EFFECTIVENESS?

It’s often said that the most creative campaigns are the most effective, and this year strong evidence of this continued, most especially from DDB Berlin’s ‘Travel & Surf’ for Deutsche Telekom, and, JWT London’s ‘Coffee vs Gangs’ for Kenco.

Surprisingly, few of this year’s big Cannes winners entered. Cannes rightfully dominates the creative awards season. But, moving ahead I believe it would benefit Brands and Agencies alike to apply the rigour of the EFFIE lens to many more of Europe’s most creative campaigns.

 

IT’S TIME FOR THE NEW GUARD TO SHOW THEIR HAND.

Huge congratulations to all our winners and finalists in 2015. I felt proud of every decision made by our judging panel, but, just as the EFFIEs have pivoted to incorporate social media and digital results, the time is right to proactively reach out and encourage the likes of Airbnb, Uber, Hive and a new guard of brands to step forward and compete.

Looking ahead, 2016 will see a special panel mark the twentieth anniversary of the European EFFIES, with former EACA presidents reviewing every Gold winner since 1996 to single out one campaign as the ultimate benchmark for effectiveness.

What a perfect example of best practise in action.  And, a true mark of respect for the effort, determination and will to win of European marketers and agency partners who have helped create our gold-standard effectiveness awards.

I have my personal favourite; let’s hope the Presidents’ Panel agrees.

Richard’s views have been published by mandmglobal. Please click here to read the full story: http://mandmglobal.com/grey-the-art-of-being-effective-at-the-business-of-effectiveness/

Victoria Sinclair