Agencies Bask in Addy Glow

The Arkansas Advertising Federation celebrated its big night Feb. 15, handing out coveted Addy awards honoring the best of the region's advertising efforts.

The evening's biggest award was mainly a contest between the market's largest agencies, Stone Ward and Cranford Johnson Robinson Woods, both of which managed multiple nominations.

CJRW, the state's largest firm, had three nominations in the Best of Show category, representing clients Blues Fest, the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission and Capers Restaurant. Stone Ward checked in with efforts for Terminix International and the Ark-ansas Association of Area Agencies on Aging.

But Forza Marketing Group held its own, muscling its way into the fray with its work for Little Sicilian Sauces.

At the end of the evening, it was Stone Ward's television campaign for Agencies on Aging's Arkansas Caregivers service that won best of show. The two spots were produced with Dempsey Film Group of Little Rock.

Stone Ward won another major award, taking home the special judges award for its Chautauqua print campaign for the Arkansas Museum of Natural Resources. CJRW took home the honor of best of broadcast for its "Doug and Terry Blues" spot for Blues Fest. Forza's best of show nominee — the "Unmarked Package" ad for Little Sicilian Sauces — fetched the agency best of print.

Numbers Game

Apart from the individual awards, some agencies looked at the number of awards they won as reasons to celebrate.

Stone Ward was one such agency. The state's second-largest firm consistently contributes the most entries of any other firm in the market, this year entering 226. The year's payoff was 167 awards: 50 Gold Addys, 76 silvers and 41 bronzes.

Forza played the numbers game when tallying its awards, though it took a different route, noting a 90 percent return rate on entries versus awards. Forza entered 92 pieces and received 83 awards: 16 Gold Addys, 34 silver and 33 bronze.

For the record, CJRW said it entered 149 pieces, resulting in 17 Gold Addys, 54 silvers and 44 bronzes. Those figures, however, do not include the awards the agency was eligible to receive on Saturday, when the northwest Arkansas AdFed chapter held its Addy awards. CJRW, like some other Little Rock agencies, has offices in northwest Arkansas.

Bottom Line

This year's Addy awards took place for the second consecutive year at the Clear Channel Metroplex. Organizers said about 400 people attended.

The Arkansas Advertising Federation received 773 entries, which was again less than the number they received the year before. Angel Galloway of Mangan Holcomb Rainwater Culpepper, who helped organize this year's show, attributed the slump in the number of entries to the sagging economy. Entries cost $40 each for federation members and $50 for nonmembers. Despite the slump, however, the Little Rock chapter still draws the most entries of those in its district, she said.

Addy fever continues, as Gold Addy and silver winners go on to compete at the district competition, which takes place April 11 in Little Rock. Winners from that event will compete in the national contest in June in Los Angeles.