KUALA LUMPUR, MALAYSIA — Marketing spend is one of the biggest and most important expenditure items in a company’s budget. Successfully executed campaigns allow a company to grow their business, aligning marketing efforts with tangible business results without compromising the creativity and originality which are essential to good advertising.
How do companies know if they have executed an effective industry-leading marketing campaign that has positively impacted their business? For marketers and their advertising agencies, the answer is the Effie Awards.
Organized by 4As Malaysia, the Effies are the only global award that honors achievement in meeting and exceeding marketing communications objectives, focusing on effective campaigns that work in the marketplace.
The Effie Awards are a closely watched preeminent industry award that recognizes all forms of marketing communication that contribute to a brand’s success.
In 2021, the Malaysia Effie Awards evaluated 197 entries, an increase from 138 entries in the previous edition, a reflection of how winning an Effie is a universally recognized achievement for the marketer and their partner, the advertising agency.
“Other industry awards reward the creativity and originality of marketing campaigns, and they are often regarded as the mark of success for an advertising agency. However marketers are increasingly understanding the value of getting the right marketing message in the right platforms and channels and in the right way,” said 4As CEO Khairudin Rahim.
“Effective marketing communication is what brands want. The power of a high value idea keeps repeatedly being proven at the Effies as an efficient, immutable advantage to achieve brand growth and business success. This is a result of properly practiced creativity that alters consumer perception and behaviour towards the advertised brand,” said Khairudin.
“Conversely, from an agency’s point of view, winning an Effie silences the people who believe that great creative work isn’t effective. In fact, the Effie is the only award that guarantees your client won’t be firing you anytime soon. Agencies that nurture creativity with an emphasis on effectiveness become more than intermediaries. They become true business partners and are valued,” added Khairudin.
To win an Effie Award, campaigns must successfully combine all the disciplines that enter into a marketing program: planning, market research, media, creative, and account management. They must demonstrate a partnership between agency and client in the creation, management, and building of a brand, and these must all be reflected through measurable campaign objectives with verifiable real-world results.
“It is the strength of the campaign’s objectives that will clinch the Effies. Objectives must be clear and simple, with quantifiable results. In contrast, fuzzy objectives with buzzy keywords such as ‘creating awareness’ or ‘engaging with customers will not be sufficient. An agency, much less the Effie Award judging committee, cannot infer what this will do for the client objectively. Instead, a well-defined target such as “increase by ‘x’ over a certain timespan in order to do ‘z’ to our brand” will amply demonstrate the campaign impact on the brand, making it very clear why the campaign matters,” said Malaysia Effie Awards 2022 Organizing Chairperson Ryusuke Oda, MD, Hakuhodo Malaysia.
Besides clear, measurable objectives, Effie Award-winning campaigns also reveal strong local insights and creative ideas that are executed in the right channels. “Winning entries contain creative ideas that are positioned to appeal to the right audience, at the right place, and at the right time. These entries also demonstrate a connection behind strong local insights and the ideas, and are able to explain how everything melds together,” said Oda.
Ideally, a marketing campaign should be able to measure an impact on sales, but the Effie Awards also give weight to campaigns that can prove a change in how people feel and think about the brand. “Winning an Effie Award demonstrates not only that our work is effective, but also how it is effective. Marketing campaigns that are based on a coherent strategy are far more likely to be effective, and once they are executed, they tell a success story,” said Oda.
“Ultimately, winning an Effie Award means that an agency has mastered its craft and understanding of marketing,” added Oda.
For the advertising industry, the Effie Awards serves to independently verify that the industry’s creative work delivers on its objectives and that its ideas drive results. Recently this has been supplemented with the establishment of the Effie Effectiveness Index, the first global ranking of marketing communications effectiveness that identifies and ranks the marketing communications industry’s most effective agencies, advertisers, brands, and individual marketers by analyzing finalist and winner data from all Effie Worldwide competitions.
Entries for the 2022 Effie Awards Malaysia should be submitted between July and August 2022, and the winners will be announced in December 2022. Submissions must be made online through the Effie Universal Competition Software, and entrants are advised to register early to familiarise themselves with the new entry system.
The Awards requirements can be found online at the 2022 Effie Awards Malaysia website.