New technology pioneers the way

It is time for marketing awards to change. They no longer reflect all marketing disciplines and technologies being used.

At the moment, they provide a public platform on which the same advertising and promotional formats are championed and the same old agencies get the gongs.

Below-the-line agencies are becoming too comfortable in doing the same type of work and not pushing back the frontiers as they used to.

It is time for new categories of awards that publicly acclaim new types of work.

Where are the rewards for campaigns in the rapidly expanding areas of alternative broadcast formats, live marketing and interactive broadcast promotion?

Are the likes of the Institute of Sales Promotion aware of the promotional work in these areas?

I am not championing evolution as a foot-stamping response to my company not having the chance of being showered with crystal trophies.

It is simply that I believe awards are one of the few ways of publicly demonstrating how new technology and media can achieve good results.

In time, awards criteria will change to reflect new marketing disciplines and practices.

In 20 years’ time, we will not recognise many of the categories that currently exist. They will be replaced by accolades for best use of online virtual reality, or most creative use of DVD in product placement.

I do not expect change overnight. However, it would be reassuring to believe that when below-the-line awards committees meet, they are at least considering including new technology techniques. It is time once more for them to show they are the true pioneers in marketing.

Andrew Hillary

Managing director

Clearwater Communications

London SW6

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