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Tokyo Interactive Ad Awards -- results and analysis

Akihito Abe
Tokyo Interactive Ad Awards -- results and analysis Akihito Abe

Late March to mid-April is a time when cherry blossoms are in full bloom in Japan. It is also a time when people in interactive advertising feel restless and excited. That's because the results of the Tokyo Interactive Ad Awards (TIAA) are officially announced. The TIAA is the most famous interactive ad show in Japan, and is now in its sixth year. There have been major changes in the jurors this year. The following is a list of them (The names marked with an asterisk are new members).

Head of jury
Naoto Oiwa (Dentsu)

*Naoki Ito (GT)
Kumiko Kitamura (AOI Promotion)
*Seijo Kawaguchi (Tugboat Media Inc.)
Hiroo Kida (ADK)
*Koichiro Tanaka (Projector Inc.)
*Takashi Kamada (Spfdesign)
*Hiroki Nakamura (Dentsu)
Yugo Nakamura (tha Ltd)
Toshiya Fukuda (TripleSevenInteractive)
Shinya Nakajima (Film director and juror of the ACC CM Festival)
*Akihito Abe (OgilvyOne)

As you can see from this list, I was appointed as one of the jurors. The first two screenings were conducted offline and then on March 18, all the jurors were convened into a meeting room at Hakuhodo to hold the final screening. The judging started at 13:00. Each piece of work was shown one by one on a large screen, and everyone discussed its strengths and weaknesses. Since most of the jurors have experience judging awards out of Japan and are well aware of what's going on in the industry globally, they made ruthless remarks before omitting any work resembling international work. The judging was an extremely long process -- it ended at 20:00. But in the end, everyone was happy. The results were officially announced on March 31.

I will start by introducing the work that won Grand Prix, the special awards and the gold awards for each category.

Grand Prix
I introduced Uniqlock in my previous column. It uses simple blog widgets combined with music, dance and a clock. Female dancers wearing Uniqlo dance to the time signals and music. Uniqlock features products in their natural environment, yet is a tool that successfully penetrates into the users' daily lives. The head of jury commented, "It is a piece of work done by people who know the significance of not expressing too much."

Best Creator Award
Koichiro Tanaka (Projector Inc.)
Koichiro is the creator of Uniqlock. Involved in a campaign known as Big Shadow last year, Projector is very good at promoting innovative methods.

Best Interactive Production Houses
Non Grid
These two companies worked on Big Shadow last year and Rec You this year. Their clever use of high-level and stable technologies, and creativity were highly evaluated.

Banner Category

These two public advertisements won gold in this category. Unfortunately, there was a feeling that standard banners have lost their momentum. We hope there will be stronger pieces of work in future, as there are still lots of other possibilities to uncover.

Floating Banner Category
Viewpoint / Zoom in, out

These series of banners communicate Honda's car navigation system. Both ideas and implementations look great. Personally, I also like Honda's Ten Commandments that was shortlisted for the finals.

eMail Advertising Category
No gold awarded.

Other Interactive Advertising Category

NIKEiD - if you were a boy
This was a very difficult category to judge, since it consisted of work that couldn't belong to any other category such as blog parts, viral movies and (out-of-home) OOH-linked ads. I think this category will become more segmented in the future. These two pieces of work coincidentally featured ideas that utilised blogs effectively. The Kendo blog parts that "strike" timid blog comments were very impressive too.

Corporate Site Category
No gold awarded.

Product Site Category
Pokemon GTS
This is not even an ad, it's in the territory of web service. Detailed implementation with the music and guide to the Pokemon world are just fantastic. It really reflects the passion of Bascule.

Campaign Site Category
Rec You
NIKEiD - if you were a boy

These three high-quality pieces of work won gold in this highly competitive category. For me, It's D ad, Sharp's LCD TV graphics, featuring the beauty of their TVC was also impressive.

Mobile Campaign Category
Hairceda Call-to-web entertainment Ask Dylan!

This is an innovative campaign that links mobile telephone sounds with the web. The comedian became really popular after appearing in this ad. I have a feeling that there will be a shift from competition of using mobile phone screens to mobile campaigns using the mobile phone in new ways

Media Tie-In Category
No gold awarded.

Integrated Campaign Category

Rec You
(Jump Square Hide-and-Seek Advertising)
Jump Square is a very smart campaign that triggers the desire to search through their "Do not search" message. Bravia Color! Tokyo, which enabled users to change the color of the lights on the wall of the Sony Building, was also grand and impressive.

The battle for next year's TIAA has already begun. I hope that all creatives will cultivate their seeds of innovative ideas to enable them to bloom like cherry blossoms next year.

Akihito Abe is creative director, interactive, Ogilvy Japan.


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