he finalists, which represent 26 gaming companies, properties and organizations from across North America, were named in 16 categories, including best 2008 annual report, best customer publication, best print, outdoor, radio and television advertisements, best direct mail, best Web site, and best public affairs and multi-format advertising campaigns.
The best Web advertisement category was added this year to reflect the medium’s importance in gaming advertising. A panel of judges with expertise in advertising, marketing, public relations, Internet design, graphic arts and financial communications evaluated more than 190 entries to determine the 48 finalists.
“This year’s finalists represent every segment of the gaming business, commercial, tribal and racetrack casinos, pari-mutuel facilities, lotteries and equipment manufacturers, and it just goes to show that excellent communications efforts are taking place everywhere in our industry,” said Frank J. Fahrenkopf, Jr., president and CEO of the AGA, who will serve as master of ceremonies for the awards presentation.
Gaming Voice Awards will be presented at the AGA Communications Awards Presentation, part of the Global Gaming Expo’s Marketing Networking Luncheon, on November 17, from 12:45 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. at the Las Vegas Convention Center.
The AGA also will honor Alan Feldman, senior vice president of public affairs at MGM Mirage, with the Lifetime Achievement Award for Gaming Communications. Over the course of his 20 years with both Mirage Resorts, Inc. and MGM Mirage, Feldman has established a reputation built on integrity and candor and is the “go-to” man for any reporter covering the gaming industry or Las Vegas.
In addition to his role as the voice of MGM Mirage, he is active in the responsible gaming arena, serving on the boards of the National Center for Responsible Gaming and the Nevada Council on Problem Gambling. “Alan is one of the smartest PR men I’ve ever met, and I know that there are very few people who have either worked for him or with him who would disagree,” Fahrenkopf said. “I’m proud that we are able to honor him this year with the Lifetime Achievement Award.”
The AGA Communications Awards are made possible with support from Piercy Bowler Taylor & Kern (PBTK) and Global Gaming Expo (G2E).
2009 Gaming Voice Award Finalists will be:
Best 2008 Annual Report: British Columbia Lottery Corporation (BCLC) – “Connecting: BCLC’s Annual Service Plan Report” (Assisting agency: Identica), International Game Technology (IGT) – “The Right Choice”, WMS Gaming – “A Blueprint for Success Means Putting People First” (Assisting agency: Access Communications)
Best Broadcast Advertisement: Radio: Grand Victoria Casino – “You Rule Radio – Great Rulers” (Assisting agency: The Glenn Group), Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino – “Shark Reef’s Haunted Reef Radio Ad” (Assisting agency: RPA), New York-New York Hotel and Casino – “Schmuck” (Assisting agency: David & Goliath).
Best Broadcast Advertisement – Television: Ameristar Casinos – “Golden Touch Promotional Giveaway” (Assisting agency: Cannonball), Indiana Live Casino – “Indiana Live Obama TV” (Assisting agency: The Media & Marketing Group), Lakes Entertainment – “Tale of the Red Hawk” (Assisting agency: RPM Advertising).
Best Communications Campaign: Harrah’s Entertainment. – “Communicating with Employees during a Financial Crisis”, IGT – “SbX Campaign”, MGM MIRAGE – “The People Place” (Assisting agency: Aon Consulting)
Best Corporate Social Responsibility Publication: Barona Resort & Casino – The Barona Connection, Barona Resort & Casino – The Barona Valley Environmental Sustainability Program.
Best Customer Publication: MGM MIRAGE – “M – The Vegas Lifestyle Magazine (Assisting agency: Custom Publishing Group), Seminole Gaming – “Seminole Player’s Life” (Assisting agency: SPConnect), Silverton Casino Lodge – “Silverton Las Vegas: Welcome to the Future” (Assisting agency: SK+G).
Best Direct Mail - Single Piece: Barona Resort & Casino – “Randy Travis Spring VIP Concert Event Invitation”, Belterra Casino Resort and Spa – “New Year’s Eve Invite” (Assisting agency: SK+G), Lumière Place Casino and Hotels – “Lumière Place Sales Kit” (Assisting agency: SK+G).
Best Direct Mail Campaign: Barona Resort & Casino – “2009 Club Barona Birthdays”, Barona Resort & Casino – “2009 Club Barona Tier Aspiration and Migration Program”, Barona Resort & Casino – “Club Barona Newsletter”.
Best Employee Publication: Harrah’s Entertainment, Inc. – “Gary Loveman’s Weekly eWrap”, MGM MIRAGE – “The Daily Momentum”, Pinnacle Entertainment, Inc. – “Pinnacle Entertainment Employee Magazine” (Assisting agency: Lake City Printing).
Best Multi-format Ad Campaign: Casino Rama – “Casino Rama Multimedia Campaign” (Assisting agency: Marshall Fenn Communications), G.A. Wright Marketing, Inc. – “Santa Letter Lead Generation Mailer”, Silverton Casino Lodge – “Silverton Casino Lodge is Livin’ Lodge in 2009” (Assisting agency: SK+G).
Best Outdoor Advertisement: Single Piece: Beau Rivage Resort and Casino – Beau Rivage Airport Baggage Belt (Assisting agency: Masterminds), IGT – Indiana Jones Slots Outdoor (Assisting agency: Masterminds), Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino – Shark Reef Santa in the Shipwreck (Assisting agency: RPA).
Best Outdoor Advertising Campaign: Beau Rivage Resort and Casino – “Big Winners Outdoor Campaign” (Assisting agency: Masterminds), Monte Carlo Resort and Casino – “Unpretentiously Luxurious” (Assisting agency: David & Goliath), Southland Park Gaming & Racing – “If You Were Going to Southland” (Assisting agency: TMB Marketing Group).
Best Print Advertisement: Single Piece: Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino – “Wine Angel Print Ad” (Assisting agency: RPA), Seminole Gaming Administration – “KISS Southern Living Ad” (Assisting agency: 1 Trick Pony), Seminole Hard Rock Hollywood – “Cut the Bull Council Oak Dining Out Ad” (Assisting agency: 1 Trick Pony), Seminole Hard Rock Hollywood – “Kiss the Sky Air Tran Ad” (Assisting agency: 1 Trick Pony).
Best Print Advertising Campaign: Luxor Hotel & Casino – “Luxor Brand Campaign: Get to the Point”, Monte Carlo Resort and Casino – “Unpretentiously Luxurious” (Assisting agency: David & Goliath), Prairie Meadows – “Camel and Ostrich Races”.
Best Web Advertisement: Barona Resort & Casino – “Barona Video Contest” (Assisting agency: ideawork), Barona Resort & Casino – “Gondola Game” (Assisting agency: ideawork).
Best Web Site: Barona Resort & Casino – www.barona.com (Assisting agency: ideawork), Barona Resort & Casino – “Speakeasy” – www.barona.com/web-projects/speakeasy (Assisting agency: ideawork), The New York Racing Association – www.belmontstakes.com (Assisting agency: Americaneagle.com), WMS Gaming Inc. – “WMS’s Freedom of Choice Microsite: Keeping Server-based Gaming Open to All” – www.iwantfreedomofchoice.com (Assisting agency: Access Communications).