Sunday, February 25, 2007

Who's Your Addy

I had to teach Thursday night and could not attend the annual Addy extravaganza. So I had to read the Grand Rapids Press article and go to the Ad Club West Michigan Web site to see the results.

Both sources tell who won, and for what. (Interesting to see that Steelcase's inhouse efforts garnered as many awards as some agencies.)

But I can't tell WHY anyone won. My problem in the past with the Addys is that, as wonderful as the work is by observation, shouldn't a winner be required to show that the ad, oh, dare I say it, accomplished something? Particularly, did it accomplish what it was supposed to, what was envisioned before the ad was created and implemented?

But we never know for sure. The industry and the academy are putting more emphasis on measurement and ROI. The various awards programs should do the same.

The PRoof Awards, given by the West Michigan Public Relations Society of America, require an evaluation and demonstration that the various PR efforts--whether media relations, advertising, or all manner of events--achieved the desired objectives. (That's why they are called the PRoof Awards). I wonder if the Press will explain that in their coverage of PRoof winners.

On another subject, we have yet to see the Press cover PRoof Awards to the extent they cover the Addy's. I guess business interests continue to win over journalistic integrity on this matter at the Press. Advertisers bring in money, so they get covered. PR folks who provide news, access to newsmakers and other less tangible efforts, don't get covered. I and other local PR pros have spoken to the Press about this in the past, to no avail.

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