The American Advertising Awards (AAAs) — formerly the OMNIs and ADDYs — is the largest and most representative advertising competition. Each year, it attracts more than 40,000 entries in local American Advertising Federation (AAF) competitions, including AAF-KC.
The competition includes both professional and student work, recognizing and rewarding creative excellence in the art of advertising.
Work submitted to the AAAs can receive three possible awards:
JUDGE'S CITATION AAA: Advertising work recognized by one of the judges of the competition, highlighting features that lead toward great advertising.
SILVER AAA: Advertising work considered outstanding and worthy of recognition at the local competition.
GOLD AAA: Advertising work recognized as the highest level of creative excellence and judged superior to all other entries in its category.
BEST OF ______ AAA: Advertising work recognized by the judges, highlighting features they like best. These three awards are subjective and can be awarded to work submitted in any category of the competition.
BEST OF SHOW AAA: Advertising work ranked above and beyond any other entries within the local competition. It is awarded at the end of the show, similarly to the Best Picture award at the Oscars.
There is no set number of awards given each year. The judges determine the number of awards given in each category based on the relative quality of work in that category. That means the creative work submitted by the advertisers of Kansas City determines the competitiveness of the awards. And that’s why you should submit your work — to push the awards to be even more representative of the awesome creative being produced right here in the Midwest.
The local AAAs is the first phase of the three-tier competition where agencies, freelancers and students can be recognized as the best in their markets. Local Gold AAAs winners move on to compete against winners from other local clubs in one of 15 district competitions. AAF-KC winners compete in the AAF District 9 competition — which includes work from Iowa, Kansas, Missouri and Nebraska — held in March every year. In 2019, the AAF District 9 competition will be in St. Louis.
If you win at the AAF District 9 AAAs, your work will move on to the AAF National competition held at ADMERICA every year. Entering your work at the local level is your first step toward winning a National American Advertising Award and being recognized among advertising legends.
AAF uses all proceeds from the AAAs to support the entire advertising industry at the national, district and local levels. That’s how AAF is able to enhance the advertising produced in Kansas City and other markets through programs, including public service, internships, advocacy groups, advertising education, and consumer awareness.
The student competition of the AAAs is sponsored by AAF and Ad 2 National. As a unique national awards program, the Student AAAs is designed to showcase the incredible work being created by students as part of their educational coursework.
Students are eligible to enter work if they meet the following requirements:
Student work that wins at the local level can move up to the regional and national levels, just like the work entered by professionals across the country.
*Copyright infringement and/or plagiarism (be it intentional or unintentional) will result in the disqualification and, if applicable, awards will be removed from any entry deemed in violation. All entry fees will be forfeited.
Student work that wins at the local, district and national levels receive the following:
At the local level, students receive a Student American Advertising Award for first-place work. Simply entering your work and attending the awards show also gets your name and work in front of many Kansas City advertising professionals. Remember, networking is one of the best ways to get a job and foster the growth of your career.