Based on the 2020 Agency of the Awards results for Australia and New Zealand, announced earlier today, Special Group certainly lives up to its name.
The agency's Australia and New Zealand shops combined for 13 awards in total, including six golds. The agency swept the Creative Agency of the Year categories with golds in both Australia and New Zealand and added golds for Agency Marketer Partnership of the Year (with Tourism Australia), Best Culture, Independent Agency of the Year and Integrated Marketing Agency of the Year. On top of that, Special Group won silvers for New Zealand Digital Agency of the Year, Content Marketing Agency of the Year and Social Media Agency of the Year. And on top of that, the agency's people captured four out of the six people/team titles awarded (see details below).
With six awards, DDB and Tribal brought in the second highest award total, most notably winning golds for New Zealand Digital Agency of the Year and ANZ Social Media Agency of the Year—both secured by DDB New Zealand. Meanwhile, DDB's offices in Australia and New Zealand took the silvers under Creative Agency of the Year in their respective markets, Tribal Worldwide added a silver for Australia Digital Agency of the Year, and DDB also had one winner in the people/team section (see below).
Digitas took the Australia Digital Agency of the Year crown.
The Media Agency of the Year categories saw no golds awarded, with UM winning a silver in Australia and both Omnicom agencies, OMD and PHD, taking silvers in New Zealand.
Consultant-owned agencies also made an impact. Deloitte Digital won a gold in the Australia/New Zealand Consultancy of the Year category and a silver in the Australia Digital Agency of the Year contest, while The Monkeys won a bronze under Australia Creative Agency of the Year.
Silver awards were the order of the day in the remaining agency categories, where no golds were awarded. In the PR Agency of the Year categories, Eleven and Sling & Stone both earned silvers in Australia, while Mango Communications claimed the lone silver in New Zealand. Motion Sickness of New Zealand won silvers for both ANZ Boutique Agency of the Year silver and ANZ Production Company of the Year (and would surely win for Coolest Agency Name if such a category existed). George P. Johnson Australia & New Zealand was the silver winner for ANZ Event Marketing Agency of the Year.
Other agencies winning silvers were Digitas (the lone ANZ Specialist Agency of the Year award), DBM Atlas (ANZ Consultancy of the Year), Socialites Group (ANZ Social Media Agency of the Year) and Adhesive PR (Best Culture and Talent Development Program of the Year).
People and teams
In the people and team categories, a quartet of ANZ awards went to Special Group New Zealand: Account Person of the Year (Storm Day), Agency Head of the Year (Tony Bradbourne), Strategic/Brand Planner of the Year (Rory Gallery) and New Business Development Team of the Year.
DDB Sydney's Tara Ford took the Creative Person of the Year title.
Finally, the awards yielded two brand winners from New Zealand. The Marketer of the Year is Tourism New Zealand's Brodie McLeish, and the Brand of the Year is 100% Pure New Zealand.