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20th Annual Awards of Excellence– Call for Entries

OACVB is excited to announce the STAR Awards: State Tourism Achievement Recognition.  Formerly known as the MIDDYS, the name has changed to align these awards with the tourism industry. In tandem with the name, a few additional changes have been made to the recognition program. Some categories have been combined or redefined, based on past participation.

Entries will be judged on a scale of 5 stars in the following:

  • Breakthrough – Does the piece have impact/stopping power?
  • Relevance – Does the piece meet the need of the intended audience?
  • Differentiation – Does it stand out from the competition?
  • Action – How well does it promote the service or product? Is there an understood next step or call to action?
  • Results – Does the entry demonstrate that the piece meets its objectives?

WHY submit an entry? Winners will get bragging rights and recognition within an industry that loves a little competition, so the award tastes sweeter (literally). This is a great way to celebrate the work of your staff; a nomination goes a long way for morale. By putting your product or service forward for consideration, you are validating the mission and demonstrating the value of a destination marketing organization. These awards highlight a dedication to excellence.

We heard you say that you’d like to see the winning work for longer than a brief flash on the screen.  Done.  Winning entries will be on display at the OTA Conference on Travel in OACVB’s booth.  These will be available for the industry to view along with a new FREE category: Give-a-ways/Promotional Items.  We are all looking for great promotional ideas.  This year, OACVB members may submit a promotional item that will be judged at OTA.  A People’s Choice will be announced at the November 16 OACVB Board meeting.

Often, we learn best from our own mistakes or the mistakes of others. A second FREE category being introduced this year is the Epic Fail.  Judges will be looking for an initiative that began with good intentions and ended up being something that nobody should repeat.  Let’s have a little fun and learn from each other. There will not be budget categories for our FREE categories.

OACVB is also introducing the Shooting Star Award to be given to a person or organization that has repeatedly demonstrated a forward trajectory in their work and in their attitude. This recipient has made contributions to move the organization and the industry forward by engaging, participating, and contributing to travel and tourism in Ohio.  This recipient goes above and beyond to be part of the solution.  When we look upon this shooting star, we make a wish to be just like them in many ways.  Nominations may be made by submitting a one page summary on the qualifications that meet this criteria for either an individual or an organization. This award may not be given annually.

The STAR Awards competition is open to all members of the Ohio Association of Convention and Visitor Bureaus. The STAR Awards Luncheon and presentation will be held September 21, 2017 at Romer’s Catering’s Greenville Party Room in Greenville OH on September 21.

ENTRY GUIDELINES

Eligibility

Current members of OACVB are eligible to participate in the program. All entries must promote tourism or destination marketing whether distributed internationally, nationally, regionally, or locally. 

Entries must have been newly produced and put into use between Aug. 1, 2016 and July 31, 2017.

Entries must be new designs or publications produced during the entry year period.  A CVB may submit as many entries in each category as desired. The same entry may not be submitted in two separate categories unless explicitly noted.

Budget Categories

Budget categories are now aligned with OTA’s Ruby Award budget categories.  This allows for fair differentiation and consistency within the industry. Marketing budget is defined by any non-personnel budget items related to the promotion or creation of marketing for your business. To be clear: staff hours are not included, but if you hire an agency to create your materials, it is assumed that the agency work falls into your Marketing budget.  While everyone may have slight variances in budget line items, please consider your costs for creative + placement.

$0 – $50,000
$50,000 – 200,000
$200,000 and above

(PLEASE NOTE: Budget categories WILL NOT be combined or altered!) 

Fees

Entry fee is $35 per entry. Make your check payable to the Ohio Association of Convention and Visitor Bureaus. The check must be attached to your inventory sheet. If the inventory sheet is emailed, you may mail your check to the OACVB office.

Entering the STAR Awards

A CVB’s entry should include these elements:

  1. An Inventory Sheet which details each category to which the CVB is submitting entries.
  2. Each category entry will have its own Catergory Entry Form and example of the project.
    • The Category Entry Form will detail the purpose, execution and results of the project for judging purposes.
    • The Categories List outlines how the Example of the work should be submitted per category. Whenever possible, the work should submitted electronically or a link to the sample on the web should be included. If the example itself must be submitted (for example, a Visitors Guide or dimensional mailer), please label it with this information:
      • Entry Category
      • Budget Category
      • CVB
      • Entry Title

3. Your entry fee total, as a check made payable to OACVB.

Mail your complete entry to:

MIDDY Awards

c/o Molly Hunter
41 S. High St., Suite 2400,  
Columbus OH 43215

Deadline

The deadline for entries to be accepted is 5:00 p.m. on September 5, 2017.  Payment and entry packets must be received by this date for entries to be judged. All entries should be sent to the address above.  

Judging

The competition will be judged by a team of experts in the communications, advertising, publications and/or tourism from outside the OACVB membership. Judges may select a First Place and Second Place in each category. If Judges deem no entry worthy of an award, none will be given. Judges reserve the right to award ties in any category.

Awards Luncheon

The winners will be announced at the STAR Awards Luncheon and presentation 0n September 21, 2017 at noon at the Romer’s Catering’s Greenville Party Room in Greenville OH.

There will be a display area at the luncheon where all entries will be available for review. Please pick up entries at the end of the awards luncheon. Unclaimed entries will become property of OACVB. 

Plaques will be presented to First and Second place winners in each category. In case of multiple creators, additional plaques can be ordered bearing the names of those individuals. See Entry Form. 

Questions

Please direct questions to: Molly Hunter at OACVB, 888-505-9552 or mhunter@oacvb.org.

Your STAR Award Checklist:

  • Completed inventory sheet; budget category indicated
  • Attached check with mailed submissions or payment submitted online
  • Completed Category Entry Form each entry; budget category indicated
  • Met submission requirements
  • Each submission included a label on the back of the submission
  • Only one entry on a presentation board

 STAR AWARD CATEGORIES

Visitor Guide:The category includes visitor guides of any size. Submit one copy.

Brochure/Flyer/rack card: The category includes all brochures, flyers and rack cards. Submit one copy.

Newsletter:The category is print or email newsletters geared towards CVB members/partners. Submit any two consecutive issues within the entry year. Submit electronically.

Annual Report:The category is for the 2015 annual report. May submit hard copy or PDF.

Advertisement – Leisure Travel audience:The category includes all print/display ads or series of ads that promote your destination for leisure visits. Submit PDF.

TV Commercial:The category may have a maximum length of 60-seconds. Submit via web link to the video (preferred) or DVD.

Promo Video – Leisure:The video may have a maximum length of 30 minutes and should be geared to a leisure tourism audience. Submit via web link to the video (preferred) or DVD.

Promo Video – B2B: Entries may have a maximum length of 30 minutes with content geared to a Business-to-Business audience, for example group travel leaders, events rights holders or meeting planners. Submit via web link to the video (preferred) or DVD.

Website: Web pages will be judged on design, innovation, content, technology, interactivity, copy writing, ease of use and appeal to audience.   Submit URL on Entry Form

Social Media Marketing/Campaign: Demonstrate creative ways in which new and traditional social mediums (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, blogs, etc) were used to build and promote engagement with customers and prospects. Screen shots/pdfs may be submitted.                

Marketing Campaign:The category is for a promotional campaign ties together all elements of a campaign. Specific campaign elements included in this entry may also be individually placed in other categories (for instance, the website may also be entered in the website category.) You may enter the examples via e-mail, together in a notebook or on a black board.

Epic Fail: Often, we learn best from our own mistakes or the mistakes of others. A second FREE category being introduced this year is the Epic Fail.  Judges will be looking for an initiative that began with good intentions and ended up being something that nobody should repeat.  Let’s have a little fun and learn from each other. There will not be budget categories for our FREE categories.

Give-a-ways/Promotional Items: We heard you say that you’d like to see the winning work for longer than a brief flash on the screen.  Done.  Winning entries will be on display at the OTA Conference on Travel in OACVB’s booth.  These will be available for the industry to view along with a new FREE category: Give-a-ways/Promotional Items.  We are all looking for great promotional ideas.  This year, OACVB members may submit a promotional item that will be judged at OTA.  A People’s Choice will be announced at the November 16 OACVB Board meeting.

 

Category Entry Form

Fill out one form for each category you are entering.

Inventory and Fee Sheet

Fill out one per CVB to catalog your complete submission