Connected Consumer Awards 2014 - the winners!
Innovators pursuing new advertising and commercial opportunities in the connected industry were celebrated at the annual Connected Consumer Awards last night, hosted at Nomura, on the banks of the Thames.
"The Connies", back for their second year, saw media agency Carat, pictured above, dominate the proceedings for its work on Very.co.uk - taking both the Grand Prix prize as well as the trophy for the Most Creative Campaign.
"For the Grand Prix the judges had before them an outstanding research project, a brilliant ad tech innovation and two highly effective campaigns," said Chair of the judges, Graham Lovelace, who also hosted the event alongside media journalist Torin Douglas.
"However, when we pored over the winners one really defined what these awards are all about; the use of convergent media to identify connected consumers, reach out, and engage them in novel and creative ways. The way Carat did that for Very.co.uk provides a case study for the industry."
The Most Connected Agency award was handed to MediaCom in a "very tight category" where a number of agencies impressed the judges. However, MediaCom was deemed the stand-out entry due to the "ethos of connectivity" running throughout planning, trading, and consumer research.
"Every agency short-listed in this category showed excellent abilities across connected planning and all are clearly committed to driving through new processes and techniques with the aim of better work for clients being the end goal," said judge and digital consultant Greg Grimmer.
"Carat's work with Very.co.uk clearly caught our eye as did last year's winners, Mindshare, who again put in a strong entry. However, MediaCom are worthy winners due to their proof of innovative work being executed for happy - and demanding - clients."
The Best Research Project was awarded to Yahoo For Mediasenses with judge Richard Marks, director of Research the Media, noting that the category had the highest number of entries, reflecting "our thirst for knowledge" when it comes to understanding how to best connect with consumers.
"Yahoo's Mediasenses project stood out in a very strong field," Marks said. "It orchestrated a wide range of complementary research techniques to deliver real insights about the role tablets fulfil in our lives and the media implications.
"Critically the communication of the research was both engaging and illuminating, ensuring it has circulated very widely and added to our knowledge of a technology that, lest we forget, is less than four years old."
In the Most Effective Campaign category, Weve took the trophy for its work on the Microsoft Windows Phone 8 Partnership.
Judge Simon Gauntlett, the technology director for DTG, said: "The Weve campaign demonstrated an innovative and effective way of targeting potential customers in the challenging world of mobile handsets" - noting how such targeting will benefit businesses and consumers alike.
In another double win, The Best Technology and Best Innovation categories were won by Sky Media for Sky Ad Smart, with the judges describing the entry as "extremely clever and innovative."
Wolverine Consulting's Stacey Anklam said to be able to deploy Sky AdSmart on top of a mature DTH satellite platform required some "amazing technology to be developed and various parts of the broadcast chain to be coordinated."
Sky was also singled out by the judges for specifically highlighting the difficulties related to substituting within a broadcast stream that was "undetectable" by the customer.
"Having the set-top box understand and choose ads that met the household profile in preparation for substitution was also really clever," Anklam added.
Derek Jones, managing director of MediaTel, who organised Wednesday's event said: "Every entry we had for our second Connected Consumer Awards was excellent. As the market evolves, each winner really helps set bench-marks for others to try and better through further innovation.
"A huge thanks to everyone for taking part. Our judges had another tough year picking winners from such a high quality crop of entries."
The awards were a part of the two-day Connected Consumer conference, a commercially-focused event that saw both live demonstrations of all the first, second and third screen technologies at iBurbia studios, followed by a day of lively panel debates with industry leaders in a range of specialist fields.
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