It wasn’t a radio commercial or magazine spread. Not a direct mail piece either. So, the region’s best advertising of the year must have been a billboard or banner ad, right? Nope and nope.
The Best of Show winner at the recent 2009 American Advertising Federation’s Fifth District ADDY Awards presentation was - hold for it - an On Hold Messaging production. Yeah, the stuff you hear while you’re waiting on hold.
“We get that reaction a lot when people find out what we do…and how many awards we’ve won doing it,” said Jerry Brown. He’s the founder and president of BusinessVoice, a Toledo-based Point-Of-Entry Marketing agency. (Click here to listen to the winning entry.)
For the record, BusinessVoice has won 69 local, regional and national awards for creative and marketing excellence since 1994, nearly all of them for funny On Hold Messaging they’ve created for various companies. BusinessVoice was named Best Of Show winner at the 5th District competition over 524 other entries from Ohio, Kentucky and West Virginia.
“People aren’t expecting to laugh or be entertained after they’ve been put on hold,” said BusinessVoice Creative Director Scott Greggory. “That element of surprise can make the laugh even more enjoyable.” Greggory wrote the winning entry, an On Hold Messaging production for Amazing Space in Sylvania. He and Amy Scott served as the voice talent.
“What’s unusual about this Best Of Show win is that On Hold Messaging beat TV and radio and print and other forms of traditional advertising,” said Jerry Brown. “It’s proof of how effective On Hold Messaging can be at capturing an audience’s attention and delivering a client’s message in a fun and entertaining way.” (Hear more samples of humorous On Hold Messaging.)
The American Advertising Federation’s Fifth District ADDY judges were unanimous in their selection of the BusinessVoice entry as the Best of Show winner. “It was a very creative use of a typically underutilized medium. It was flawlessly executed,” said judge Rick Baptist.
How is humor on hold good for business?
“When it’s done well, humor can differentiate a business. Humor draws the audience in and makes them want to listen, and that opens their minds to the information on products and services,” said Brown. “A good laugh relaxes callers too; puts them in a better frame of mind, and that creates a better customer experience.”
BusinessVoice’s Best Of Show winner now goes on to compete at the national AAF ADDY Awards in Washington, DC in early June 2009.