Marketing Brand Purpose Brand Strategy

Creative Futures – a new awards competition to re-imagine the comms of tomorrow


By Jenni Baker | Senior Editor

August 26, 2022 | 7 min read

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The Drum and Canon, along with an expert team of marketing industry and technology stakeholders, have collaborated to launch a bespoke awards competition to celebrate the future of omnichannel marketing excellence and emerging talent at the vanguard of customer-centric communications.

The Drum and Canon seek out the next Creative Futures in new awards program

The Drum and Canon seek out the next Creative Futures in new awards program

The competition will champion those at the forefront of new ideas that are purpose and sustainability-driven, and that combine data and creativity to deliver measurable impact.

Brand new for 2022 as part of The Drum Social Purpose Awards, Creative Futures is a free-to-enter competition, open to students and junior creatives who are poised to rise through the ranks and redefine the marketing communications of tomorrow.

Entrants will be invited to create and design an omnichannel marketing campaign across multiple touchpoints, responding to a competition brief for a leading brand, which has been curated by a specialist working group. This will include data-driven, in-home print media, such as direct mail, door drop, partially addressed mail, insert marketing, as well as complimentary digital channels. Throughout the entry process, shortlisted entrants may also have an opportunity to attend a series of mentoring workshops – offering a true value exchange by learning from some of the best in the business.

This is the first time the industry has come together like this to showcase new collaborative ways of working by combining creative and new tech expertise to re-imagine the future of communications. Members of the working group, who will also form the awards jury, include:

  • Canon – the world’s leading imaging brand

  • Nutshell Creative – a full-service marketing and design agency

  • The Strategic Mailing Partnership - professional body that represents and protects the interests of printers and mailing houses in the UK

  • Join the Dots – a data-led, independent media agency, delivering acquisition solutions through print and broadcast media

  • JICMAIL – the joint industry body for delivering ‘gold standard’ audience and item measurement data for direct mail, door drops and business mail

  • Latcham – a print management and marketing fulfilment consultancy

  • Marketreach - the leading authority on mail, providing regular insight, research and advice for brands and agencies to use mail effectively

  • AutLay – a start-up using artificial intelligence for creating automated layouts

“Our mission is to not only prove the power of personalized print in data-driven omnichannel campaigns, but to experience what future collaboration could look like, by bringing together experts from a range of disciplines in a state-of-the-art knowledge sharing experience,” said Cathy Bittner, strategic business development manager, Canon Europe. “By breaking down silos, working together and learning from each other, there’s a real opportunity to re-imagine customer-centric communication for the future by combining creativity and new tech to drive real ROI for brands.”

Championing emerging talent

The awards program builds on the success of the ‘Class of 2021’ – a virtual exhibition set up last year to give student graduates a second chance to showcase their final year artwork, having missed out on their degree shows due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

The digital platform was designed to create connections between them and the global creative community. A carefully curated print activation ran alongside the exhibition to give both students and creatives a real-life experience of the possibilities with innovative digital print being integrated into an omnichannel user experience.

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“We’ve taken our partnership with The Drum a step further this year to launch a unique opportunity for emerging talent in the industry,” adds Bittner. “We are super excited about this competition, empowering future generations to realize their own potential, by engaging with experts and new technology to give them learning opportunities they wouldn’t otherwise have. We very much look forward to seeing what everyone in the industry can learn about the future of customer-centric engagement across multiple channels, and how print can integrate into that mix.”

The competition will launch shortly so we’re encouraging The Drum readers to spread the word. If you or any junior members of your team want to hear more, register your interest here.

Marketing Brand Purpose Brand Strategy

Content created with:

Canon Europe

As the world’s leading imaging brand, we’re committed to driving advanced technologies and celebrating innovation in image capture, print and other technologies.

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