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Big Wins for Agency Creative; Research Credited as Inspiration

For more than a decade, CUPRAP, College and University Public Relations and Associate Professionals, has recognized the industry’s top creative in a range of categories during its annual professional development conference

On March 15, during the 2018 Cuppie Awards ceremony, higher education marketing enrollment firm Paskill Stapleton & Lord (PS&L) was selected seven times for the comprehensive and diverse work developed for its clients from the 495 entries received from various institutions in in the Northeast and Midwest.

In the print category, PS&L earned multiple awards for the University of North Carolina School of the Arts: gold for postcards; bronze for posters; and bronze for brochures. A recruitment postcard series PS&L designed for Spelman College earned silver, and a viewbook created for the Pennsylvania College of Art & Design won bronze.

According to PS&L Vice President of Creative Services Bob Oxman, designing for art schools, where he and other PS&L designers received training, is a special privilege. “We wanted to approach these materials with the same gravitas as high-end professional design publications,” he says. For example, the award-winning viewbook, which implemented research findings about the institution, featured sizing comparable to an art magazine with multiple paper stocks in its interior as well as a breathtaking gatefold highlighting a range of current students’ work.

PS&L won gold in the print category for a series of postcards developed for the University of North Carolina School of the Arts.

In the advertising category, PS&L won silver for TV for spot created for ESPN on behalf of client, the United States Coast Guard Academy (USCGA). The 30-second spot, which features innovative use of a drone to capture remarkable glimpses of the campus and its remarkable cadets, implemented the branding and messaging cultivated from the strategic marketing also delivered by PS&L.

“The spot is based on a deep dive we did to reconstruct the Coast Guard brand as a first-class institution,” says Oxman, who notes that the academy successfully increased female applicants by 30% and increased minority inquiries by 143%, through the comprehensive strategy recommended by PS&L.

A campus light pole banner series featuring striking illustrations created in-house, also created for USCGA, received honorable mention in the Cuppie Awards wild card category. According to Oxman, the compelling and effective creative is set into motion from the deep research his colleagues deliver.

“When research arrives, we have an immersion process,” says Oxman. “That research stimulates visual ideas and brand messaging that ultimately congeal and are delivered to the client across platforms. PS&L design is absolutely informed design.”

PS&L partner company JPL was presented with three additional awards in the advertising and electronic media categories for clients Pennsylvania College of Health Sciences (silver, outdoor; silver, print) and Harrisburg University (gold, projection mapping display).

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Cathy Donovan,