The process

This year marks the first time media agencies submitted to a juried process for Media Agency of the Year. Previously, winners were determined by a straight poll of network, magazine and other media company execs from across the country. This time around, following the Agency of the Year model, their votes were used to select a shortlist of 12 top media agencies: Carat, Cossette Media, Genesis Vizeum, M2 Universal, MediaCom, Mediaedge:cia, Media Experts, Mindshare, OMD, PHD, Starcom MediaVest Group and ZenithOptimedia.

Each shortlisted agency was asked to submit three case studies outlining media plans for three different brands over the past 12 months. (One shortlisted agency, Genesis Vizeum, was regrettably unable to complete the submission and withdrew from the competition at the eleventh hour.)

Next, we chose the judges. The strategic panel was made up of six marketers, one of whom was an international judge, while the creative panel comprised media company execs and senior media agency representatives (not on the shortlist). Working in isolation, the judges gave each agency’s submission an overall score of zero to 10 based on strategic insight and the ability to execute creatively, as well as versatility across media.

The cumulative scores from the creative and strategic judges were then totalled and averaged, with equal weighting, omitting any conflicts of interest. The agency with the highest final score was the winner.

The scores

And now the part you’ve been waiting 16 years for: a full spread of the judges’ averages that determined the 2008 Media Agency of the Year.

Starcom MediaVest Group9.33Starcom MediaVest Group8.62Starcom MediaVest Group8.98
PHD8.15Cossette Media7.60PHD7.81
ZenithOptimedia7.75MediaCom (tie)7.38ZenithOptimedia7.57
Mindshare7.70ZenithOptimedia (tie)7.38OMD7.54
OMD7.43Media Experts7.37Cossette Media7.49
Cossette Media (tie)7.38Carat7.20Media Experts7.38
Media Experts (tie)7.38M2 Universal7.08Mindshare7.24
M2 Universal7.03Mindshare6.77M2 Universal7.06