It’s January and that means it’s almost that time again — Promax Season.
The competition isn’t yet open for entries, but we’ve been told Promax expects to post all its rules and entry materials for 2017 on its website on Jan. 17.
While we don’t have any specific details yet on what this year’s Promax will bring in terms of changes to rules and categories or deadlines, we do have years of insight and experience with the competition that could be of use as you start preparing your entries.
Assets: Your first step should be to compile your assets. Internally decide which of your 2016 promotions (on-air spots, key art, out-of-home, special projects, etc.) were strongest, and create a dump file of all these assets.
- Ensure that all of your assets are of the highest quality you can manage — we need high resolutions for all video and photos.
- Decide which projects are the most important for your team to receive recognition.
- Decide as a team what your budget is, and how many entries you’d like to submit.
- If an asset is new to Brave Dog, please send us any marketing decks or other background info that will help us to understand the ins and outs of your promotion. That’ll help us explain anything that’s obvious to you but might not be to judges who aren’t familiar with specific shows or campaigns. Our goal is to tell your story.
- Send us these materials as early as you can. The sooner we can review all of your assets, the sooner we can get started preparing your entries.
Also, please be aware that if you are giving us new materials within a week of a deadline, we’ll do our very best, but there are no guarantees that we can make the deadline. We have a lot of clients and will have a record number of entries that need to be submitted. Our only real advice here is that we suggest you try to get us things as early as possible.
Get Organized: As soon as Promax opens up, put all competition deadlines and important Brave Dog timeline dates (when write-ups/credits/assets are due, for instance) on your calendar (or a reminder on your computer/phone). Meeting the earlier deadlines will keep entry costs down, because the later your entries go in, the more the competition charges competitors. Just follow the timelines that your account manager gives you and you should be A-OK.
Categories: To get a jump-start on the competition, many of our partners like to refer to last year’s categories to get their entries rolling. And we find that, yes, it is useful to take a look to see what kinds of categories have been offered in the past to get a general idea of the options teams have for each piece of creative.
That being said, though, we don’t advise putting in a lot of work matching your current assets with old category numbers. Every year, new categories are added and removed; definitions can be edited, and number nomenclature changes. Last year, Promax added eight new categories, mostly focusing on social media and cutting edge new technology like Virtual Reality. So while it’s good to be ready and organized, spending too much time prepping your entries with old information might wind up being wasted effort.
It’s also worth keeping in mind that while many of our partners are doing awesome things in the digital, social and experiential spheres, these areas unfortunately are just not Promax’s focus. That being said, if you have a project that you’re especially excited about, we can discuss finding another competition where your work is more likely to shine.
Write-Ups: Last year, Promax reduced the length of its write-ups — which are used to explain and give context to entries — to just 250 characters, or about 100 words or less. Instructions ask that entrants include the purpose of the project, the creative brief, its intended audience and its results.
The goal of each write-up is to provide the judges with an overview of the submission and call out what makes the creative unique. A judge should be able to read the write-up for context before viewing the asset. The 250 characters is a tight squeeze, but we’re pretty practiced in making it work. From our side, any info partners can provide that help us to tell the story of their work is useful, and allows us to paint the clearest, most interesting picture for judges. Trust us: it helps.
Help?: Even if you’re preparing your own Promax entries, Brave Dog is here to help. If you find that you have any questions, please feel free to call us here at the office 323-848-9716, or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Looking forward to another busy Promax! Good luck to all who enter and keep being creative.