JACKSON – A customer in a grocery store is squeezing a cantaloupe when a Southern Miss basketball player steals it from him. An older lady is navigating an aisle while another player dribbles a basketball around her. A baby perched in a cart looks up just in time to see a head of lettuce “swoosh” the basket.
The “Grocery Store” television spot for the University of Southern Mississippi basketball program scored Best of Show Overall and Best of Show Broadcast in the 2003 ADDY Award Program, announced in February by the Jackson Advertising Federation (JAF).
Jackson-based GodwinGroup, the state`s oldest and largest advertising agency, produced the Southern Miss basketball advertising spot. GodwinGroup received a total of 42 ADDYs, including 21 each gold and silver awards.
“The Southern Miss football program has a great reputation and has been very successful,” explained Todd Ballard, creative officer for GodwinGroup. “We’ve helped in those areas in years past, and attendance has been on the upswing. Coach (Jeff) Bower is very well liked and well known. But the basketball program had suffered. We were trying to get out some awareness about the program, to come see the players, have some fun, and see what it`s all about. The production dollars were very low, but the idea was very strong. The judges saw the idea over the production value and awarded it at a level we were very pleased with.”
Of 409 entries submitted, JAF judges determined the “best-of-the-best” categories, 82 Gold ADDYs and 85 Silver ADDYs. The ADDY awards competition is the industry`s largest and most representative competition that honors excellence in advertising and cultivates the highest creative standards in the industry.
“I was a little apprehensive about serving as ADDY chair for this past year,” said Karen C. Johnson, vice president of print production for GodwinGroup. “It is a huge undertaking. But because of the people in our industry here in Jackson, it was not that overwhelming. Everyone generously contributed trade outs or time. What a wonderful group, which made a wonderful evening.”
The Ramey Agency of Jackson won the most ADDYs, 62 total, with 20 gold, 32 silver, and 10 local golds. The Ramey Agency`s Mark Moore and Wes Williams were named Art Director of the Year and Copywriter of the Year, respectively. Last year, the agency`s Sarah Montgomery was named Graphic Designer of the Year.
Jackson-based Maris, West & Baker earned 41 ADDYs, including 21 gold and 19 silver awards, plus the Best of Show Print award for its AMVAC Fortress Stand Strong. The agency`s Keith Fraser was named Graphic Designer of the Year. Last year, the agency won the Best of Show Overall for the firm`s “Who Are You” campaign for The Partnership for a Healthy Mississippi, and Best of Show in the broadcast category for the same campaign. The firm`s Mark Leffler was last year`s Copywriter of the Year.
Liquid Creative of Jackson earned 13 ADDYs, including five gold and eight silver awards. Flynn Design earned three silver awards. Hederman Brothers took home two gold awards, and Bice Advertising received one gold award.
“The value or benefit of industry awards to the industry – creative work judged by peers – is mostly in recruiting,” said Ballard. “But we base all our focus in results for clients. Winning is all well and good, but we focus on what works best for the client.”
For the Jackson advertising community, the three-tiered national competition begins with the Jackson ADDY awards. Gold and silver ADDYs are forwarded to the regional level. Those winners advance to an annual national competition. Including JAF, which was established in 1953 as The Greater Jackson Advertising Club, the American Advertising Federation (AAF) has 210 member clubs in the nation.
Contact MBJ contributing writer Lynne W. Jeter at email@example.com.