Each year, the judges see the best work produced by the biggest agencies with the largest budgets. However, only a small percentage of the creative industry has the time and resources to produce a project that is the best of the best. A shortage of time, budget and manpower however, should never be a limiting factor for creative ideas, artistic design or imaginative writing. Our judges are all long-time experienced professionals who live the process and know how difficult it can be to take a mundane product and a small budget and make it sing. Based on their experience and an expectation formed by analyzing the client and materials, they are often more impressed with the work of a small agency working on a local project, than the work of a team from a New York agency working for a Fortune 500 client. One of our favorite entries over the years was the resourceful work of a public relations person for a small non-chain New York City boutique hotel. She came up with the simple idea of writing a story about items that her client’s customers left behind in their hotel rooms. Over a couple of months, she conducted a survey that revealed surprising and interesting stats on the percentage of forgetful people and what they forgot. She included insightful comments from chambermaids about some of the unusual items. The story was picked up by the Associated Press. It ran in New York City and newspapers throughout the country. Business immediately skyrocketed from the millions of impressions that it generated. The genius was that it took virtually no money to produce a major impact for the client, and any hotel in the country could have done it.
That being said, it does help to have a large budget to design and produce a truly memorable printed piece. Below is an entry from Hilton Worldwide which is one of the most all around outstanding pieces we have ever received. It is a 200 page brochure for lobby design (forgive us but we condensed it to 11 pages). It was entered in the Publication Overall category. Where do you start? Cover? Design? Photography? Writing? Wow. We’d all like to be part of a project like this.