BYU advertising students took first place in the American Advertising Federation (AAF)’s National Student Advertising Competition (NSAC) for District 12, which covers Utah, Arizona, Nevada and Colorado.
Each year, the AAF selects a corporate client to sponsor the competition. The client provides an assignment or case study. Students are then tasked with researching the issue and preparing a completely integrated campaign for the client.
This year, students had the opportunity to create a campaign for Ocean Spray and pitch it to the advertising professionals judging the competition.
“We had to come up with an entirely new national campaign for a big client including strategy, creative work and budgets. The time and energy this project took was definitely the most difficult part,” said Erin Gazdik, the account lead for BYU’s team.
“The students did a wonderful job and pulled off a near-flawless presentation. I was very proud of them; they definitely all rose to the occasion,” said Kevin Kelly, the students’ faculty mentor. “The judges seemed sad when the ten minute question-and-answer session was over because they seemed to enjoy the team’s quick and ready answers.”
On top of winning in their district, the students also out-scored the schools in District 15 for top plans books and presentations, including District 15’s top school University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA).
“My experience in the competition gave me a lot of preparation and edge for a future career,” said Gazdik. “I learned how to manage multiple teams, work under declines, handle serious stress and sell ideas. Most importantly, I was able to experience the whole process of making an advertising campaign, from the conceptual phase to execution and pitching. It gave me a lot of confidence.”