Highest honor in marketing bestowed to Leo Burnett's Nintendo Wii ads.
The 40th Annual Effie Awards were presented this week in New York City. Nintendo's "Wii Would Like to Play" campaign won the highest honor. Agencies Leo Burnett, Starcom Worldwide, and Golin Harris led the marketing campaign and won the Grand Effie for the "most effective" marketing of the year.
Nintendo's "Wii Would Like to Play" campaign tried appealing to a new audience, the casual gamer and family gamer, instead of focusing on the traditional young male demographic. The gamble paid off: the ads had definite resonance. "Leo Burnett’s marketing strategy for the Wii will forever change the gaming industry and its dialogue with consumers," said Deborah Meyer, Chair of the Grand Effie Jury.
The strategic challenge, idea behind the campaign, and bringing the ads to life comprise 70% of the award scoring. The remaining 30% is based on the effectiveness of the campaign. The risks that the "Wii Would Like to Play" campaign embodied may be a sign of the times, but is no less laudable. "Effie's 40th anniversary comes at a time of economic recession, when clients and agencies are striving for what the Effies stand for – results," said Mary Lee Keane, Executive Director of the awards. "The most memorable Effie winners from the last 40 years were also the most creative and innovative, proving that playing it safe isn't always the most effective approach."