Last night at the 2021 Beacon Awards, New Zealand’s leading media personalities came together to celebrate “getting noticed” (the 2021 Awards theme) and acknowledging the industry’s best media-lead campaigns from 2020. Hosted by the hilarious Hayley Sproull, the evening highlighted the smart and innovative media-thinking that is driving advertising and comms up and out of Covid-19.
FCB Media was the big winner on the night, taking home a total of 11 Golds as well as the coveted Best in Show award for Fire & Emergency New Zealand and the campaign called “Fire Doesn’t Wait”. This campaign had already won three Golds in Social marketing/Public Service, Creative Media Idea and Best Communications Strategy and then the campaign won a fourth GOLD for TVNZ in Best Collaboration.
FCB’s remaining seven Golds were achieved for “Confidence Crisis” with Westpac, “inStickman” for Foodstuffs, “the Voter Concierge” for the Electoral Commission, “Finding Future Renovators Today” for Mitre 10 and lastly for the campaign called “Personalising Danger” for Water Safety NZ.
Managing Director of FCB Media, Blair Alexander commented in a statement: “We’ve put a lot of work in the last 18 months on our new comms planning process, underpinning it with the best tools from Mediabrands and FCB’s global network. And these awards are validation that our new approach is working. Our clients are telling us they increasingly value agency services, such as strategic planning, consumer insights, data and tech and we’ve managed to combine these into one cohesive solution in response.”
The night’s impressive haul takes FCB Media’s total Beacon Awards Gold wins to 100, and seven Best in Shows over the last 10 years.
Ikon Communications were also winners on the night, taking home three Golds, for their campaign “Second-chance Charlie” for 2degrees. The Golds were won in the categories Best use of Content, Creative Media Idea and Best Communications Strategy. These Beacons, along with three silvers for the same advertiser, won 2degrees the Google Advertiser of the Year.
Drew DeSantis, Managing Partner at Ikon told StopPress: “I’m extremely proud of the entire agency on the amazing result. This is really a testament to the team’s dedication and passion over the past few years to have a laser-like focus on producing great work, and pushing beyond the obvious for each and every campaign they touch – for all of our clients.
“I’d also like to thank 2degrees for their trust and support, allowing us to do our best work over the past few years,” he says.
Dentsu were also Gold winners on the night and took home two Beacons in Retail/Etail for “The Magic Number 3” for Countdown, and in Best Use of Content for “Borrow the All Blacks” for the ASB Bank.
Robert Harvey, CEO at dentsu tells StopPress that it was fantastic to see the industry come together to celebrate a brilliant collection of work in what was obviously a very challenging year.
“Great work always comes from great partnerships, and I’m really proud of the impact the work we are doing with our clients is having on their businesses. Congratulations to all of the finalists and winners,” Harvey says.
The night’s three remaining GOLDS went to OMD, PHD and Together. OMD for the incredible work “Unite Against COVID” for the NZ Government in Social Marketing/Public Service; the second GOLD to PHD and Skinny for their Consumer Services campaign “Friendvertising”; and “Brigadier General Sanders” for Together and Wendy’s for Best Launch.
“It was a pretty special night. We’ve been quietly building an incredible team so to have their hard work validated like that so consistently was amazing. Thank you to everyone that’s supported team Together since launch; publishers, platforms, data partners, creative agencies and the fantastic marketers we get to work with every day,” comments Rufus Chuter, Managing Partner at Together.
Mediacom, Motion Sickness, MBM and UM also made it to the stage, winning a host of Silver Beacons throughout the evening.
Commenting on the campaigns and entries judged this year, Simon Lendrum the Beacon’s Convenor of Judging said that the standard of entries this year was high. “Impressive for any normal year, but the majority of the campaigns recognised tonight were developed under the dark cloud of Covid-19. 2020 was a year where many media agencies and marketing departments were distracted by the functional challenges of the pandemic – changing schedules, pulling media, rapidly developing tactical communications. This did not distract tonight’s winners from developing original thinking, finding new ways to connect to audiences, and using existing channels in new ways to ensure effective and efficient communications.”
oOh!media had a fantastic night and took out both Sales Team of the Year and Media Business of the Year much to the delight of the crowd.
Nick Vile, GM at oOh!media tells StopPress: “We are beyond grateful for the incredible support we’ve received this past year – these awards wouldn’t have been possible without it. From our agency partners and clients to our commercial partners – we couldn’t have achieved this without them.”
The prestigious and fiercely fought Media Agency of the Year award, sponsored by Facebook, went to MBM for 2021. This award was judged by a panel of independent and senior business people and auditors and took into account business vision, employee development, financial performance, client acquisition and development, industry contribution and creativity and innovation. A big night for that team.
The Sandy Smith Inspiring Individual Award, sponsored by Discovery, went to the very deserving Sean McCready, Managing Partner at MBM.
“We are hugely stoked and honoured to win Agency of the Year at the Beacons last night. Last year was a rollercoaster for everyone but our fantastic clients hung in there with us and we got through in great shape. So really this award is for our clients, and also our amazing staff who worked so hard under really difficult circumstances. It’s great to be recognised in a really competitive industry,” McCready tells StopPress.
The Rising Star, an award for a promising newcomer in the first five years of their career, was awarded to Shaun Harrison from Mediacom.
A list of all the winners can be found here.