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Intouch Creative Director Selected to Judge 2014 Global Awards ​

Intouch Team

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At the heart of every Intouch endeavor is a core focus on world-class creativity. In fact, earlier this year, Advertising Health, a U.K.-based publication dedicated to healthcare advertising agency news, recognized Intouch as one of the Top 20 Most Creatively Awarded Agencies. Through the marriage of creativity and technological innovation, we have managed the many regulatory hurdles of the pharma industry and become a recognized powerhouse in healthcare advertising. 

Brent Scholz — group creative director in the Overland Park, Kan., office — has a wide breadth of expertise in our industry, especially in the creative department. Brent was recently invited to serve as a member of the Grand Jury for the 2014 Global Awards®. Over the month of September, Brent, along with a panel of international industry experts representing the top creative minds in healthcare advertising, spent time judging entrants’ work.

Brent provided us with some great insights into his judging experience:

1. What were the most memorable awards submissions? 

There were many, but there was a submission for JOHNSON’S® Baby that was especially memorable. In a nutshell, many young people in the Middle East are forced to leave their home countries (and parents) due to constant sociopolitical and economic challenges. They create a better future for themselves and their kids, but leave a huge part of their lives behind. Those who remain are generally older and not well versed with technology/social platforms/etc., so how can families stay in touch half a world apart? JOHNSON’S® Baby created a digital picture frame that grandparents in the Middle East can own. Meanwhile, the people who moved away can use their phones, plus a mobile app, and instantly upload photos to the frame. Watch the video here.  

2. How did the judging take place?

It was entirely online. I was given a welcome screen and instructions, and then I was off to the races. I clicked through each individual entry, where I could see any combination of screenshots/recap videos/write-ups/etc. I was asked to judge everything based on three criteria: objective/idea, creativity and execution. There were 106 entries in total to judge, and as part of the Grand Jury, I helped cull down the numerous entries into a shortlist for the Executive Jury. To keep my sanity, I broke my judging into three mini-marathon sessions. The Executive Jury determined the final winners, which were announced on Nov. 13. 
 
3. What did you base your decisions on? 

I always rewarded something that struck an emotional chord and was incredibly well executed. Rather than going on and on about features and benefits, what resonated with me as a human being? What actually helped solve a problem and made lives better? I saw great examples in print, as well as digital. 

4. What were your key takeaways from the experience? 

There were several for sure, but a few specific ones come straight to mind:

  • Go for the human connection and do it in a new and interesting way. Don’t succumb to a laundry list of features. Pharma advertising is no different than “regular” advertising in that good work stands out and grabs your attention, and bad puns, lists of features, etc., are forgettable.
  • Always put yourself in the shoes of the user. It’s a different shade of my first point, but it’s important. The forgettable work focuses on the product; the memorable work focuses on who needs it. And it doesn’t matter if it’s for patients or for professionals — what matters is keeping the end user in mind.
  • Finally, I was really impressed by just how international the submissions were. I can say that Australia is doing some really impressive work!

Want to learn more about Brent’s experience judging the 2014 Global Awards? Drop him a line at brent.scholz@intouchsol.com

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