Back in July, 43 of the top talents in healthcare marketing and media huddled in Midtown Manhattan's Warwick Hotel to mull an unprecedented 830 entries to this year's MM&M Awards.
This esteemed panel of judges went above and beyond the call of duty to go over the entries with a fine-toothed comb. And occasionally a blowtorch. They poked. They prodded. They deconstructed. They turned them upside down and gave them a good shake. They set themselves in the shoes of the brand managers and agency executives behind the efforts, and issued comments like: “That's very clever” or “These results are impressive.” And occasionally they would ask: “Is this the best they could do for the budget?” or “Is this really multichannel?” Amid much debating, cajoling and sharing of anecdotes from the field, they eventually reviewed and scored each entry.
And after some diligent arithmetic on our part, not to mention a lot of painstaking checking, we have arrived at our shortlist of finalists. You can find out who they are on the following pages. However, the identity of the 24 overall winners will remain firmly under wraps until the gala black-tie presentation dinner on Oct. 30 at New York City's Tavern on the Green (see below)—not even the judges know who won.
In just five years, the MM&M Awards has become something of an institution, with record numbers of entries and dinner attendees, year-on-year. Key to its success has been the independence and authority with which submissions are reviewed. This year's panel featured some of the finest leaders and thinkers from across the industry, including from the pharma side: Deborah Dunsire (Millennium Pharmaceuticals), Stephen Calabrese (Novartis), Ben Lei (Genentech), Joan Mikardos (Sanofi-Aventis), Kevin Nalty (Merck); Cynthia North (Bayer), Joe Shields (Wyeth), Meryl Weinreb (AstraZeneca), Jennifer Rinaldo (Forest Labs) and Mike Pucci (GlaxoSmithKline). Agency leaders, too, were well represented: Doug Burcin (Euro RSCG Life), Phil Deschamps (GSW Worldwide), Carol DiSanto (Cline Davis & Mann), Louisa Holland (Sudler & Hennessey), Sam Welch (Saatchi & Saatchi) and Richard Nordstrom (McCann Healthcare).
If you entered this year's program—thank you—I hope your submissions made the cut. If not, you shouldn't let that stop you from enjoying the industry's best party. The judges and I hope to see you there.