Fall in entries for Digital Loeries points to adoption issues
Wading through the near endless amount of PR on the digital transformation and seamless integration of digital into the advertising world, it must be a little disconcerting for Clint Bryce, chairman of both the Digital and Online Advertising judging panels of the 2010 Loerie awards, to see entries in these categories decline this year in spite of steady growth in online ad spend.
The Digital Media & Marketing Association (DMMA), formerly the OPA, reports Adex figures for June 2010 showed an increased in online ad spend to R61 240 862 – up from R49 556 438 in May. Year-on-year growth in online ad spend is expected to be equally dramatic as it rise from R450 million in 2009 to R600 million in 2010 (at a guess, add another R200 million on top of that for revenue generated by Google locally), according to DMMA chair Adrian Hewlett.
So while it can be argued that the recession would have impacted on Loeries entry volumes in general (Tony Koenderman reports entries declined to 2924, compared with 3077 in 2009), this should not hold true for the digital and online advertising categories.
Bryce, who recently joined Quirk eMarketing as its new CCO, says inter-agency relationships might be partly to blame for the fall in these categories. Bryce points to some ruffled feathers a couple of years ago, when BBDO NY won, among others, a Gold Lion in Cyber for the HBO “Voyeur” campaign. The digital shop that built the site, Big Spaceship, failed to receive any credit during the awards show until jury chair Colleen DeCourcy mentioned the “forgotten partner” – quote AdPulp.
Many agencies continue to view digital outfits as production shops, says Bryce, and the HBO “Voyeur” affair sparked a debate on attribution for multi-agency projects that is still to be resolved. Bryce is quick to add that the Loeries do try to ensure that all parties are credited, including both the ‘ad agency’ as well as ‘digital specialist’. It is in the industries’ interest for the Loeries to bridge any perceived divide, says Bryce.
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