Frequently Asked Questions – Summit Awards

Frequently Asked Questions

Summit Creative Award

Most years, winners are scheduled for announcement in July of each year. The exact winner announcement date is fluid being contingent on the judging teams progress.

** 2020 UPDATE** This year’s schedule was delayed by two months due to the Coronavirus pandemic. The rescheduled deadline allowed participants to get on a more solid footing with many staff migrating to home or other forms of safe working.  We’re currently finishing up our detailed administrative review of all entries. During this review stage, we catch bad URLs, missing passwords, non-blind entries, and incorrectly classified work. Our staff takes this review seriously out of respect for our high-caliber, vetted judges. We don’t want to bog them down with any sloppy moments. Keep an eye on your inbox in case you receive an email requesting particulars for one of your entries.

A few tidbits while we wait.

Status: We’re easily on target for an early-September winner announcement.

Country Participation:  This year’s creative competition included companies from the following countries: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, China, Denmark, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, India, Korea, Kuwait, Malta, Mexico, The Netherlands, New Zealand, Nigeria, Poland, Singapore, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, and The United States.

Submissions: 4100+

Notification: Winners receive both an email and in-hand winner notification. Non-winners receive an email notification.

That is why we’re here. Just give us a call or send us an email describing your project and client, and we’ll do our best to direct it to the best spot.

What are the levels of winning and how many awards are given in the SCA competition?

  • Best of Show
  • Gold
  • Silver
  • Bronze

The number of awards presented each year in the Creative Awards depends on the number of submissions in a given category, scoring range and ties.

According to the SIA bylaws, there can be no more than the following:

  • 79-85% of all submissions do not receive recognition.
  • 7-9% Bronze
  • 6-8% Silver
  • 1-3% Gold  No Gold will be given in the event entries do not meet minimum scoring qualifications.
  • Best of Show awards are determined from eligible, competing Gold-winning entries: Print, Design, Broadcast, Industry Specific Marketing, Interactive Media, Industry Self-promotion, Public Service and Campaign. Occasionally there will be a Judges Choice special recognition bestowed.

In order to ensure impartiality, the awards scores on a curve with minimum standard requirements. Percentage models, or stair-step scoring systems, (100-90, 89-80) are not considered to be reputable evaluation systems by the Summit International Awards.

The 2017 year there were approximately 7% Finalist, 4% bronze, 6% silver, 2% gold, .01 Best of Show/ Judge’s Choice.
The 2018 year there were approximately 1% finalist, 4% bronze, 5% silver, 1% gold, .005 Best of Show/Judge’s Choice.
The 2019 year there were approximately 5% bronze, 5% silver, 1.25% gold, .005 Best of Show.

The Redesign and Rebrand categories highlight creative redesign, or rebranding, of a marketing strategy. It is important to include a before and after execution, visibly labeled as such.

Interactive displays, kiosks, presentations, press events have more flexibility in how they are presented so that we are able to share the project with the Jury in as realistic way as possible.

It can be helpful to develop a short video or a PowerPoint in order to help present the project. Other times, entrants have created a microsite taking the judges through the various phases, etc.

Submissions are judged on the strength of concept, quality of execution, and the ability to persuade. Respected creative professionals with a depth of industry experience sit on several judging panels. The Summit Creative Award employs blind judging: company names are withheld. Judging takes place beginning two weeks after the final deadline with takes approximately one month. All entrants are notified of award results electronically after the judging stage is complete. Winners are sent and in-hand winner packet.

Each category employs slightly different judging criteria, however, broadly, the following are the Summit Creative Award judging criteria:

The strength of Concept/Ideation/Big Idea (originality and uniqueness of approach, message targeting and honing, the synergy between concept, copy, and layout/execution) 1-20 pts. Quality of Execution (How well the idea was executed (visual appeal, the tone of voice, chosen media, placement, etc.) 1-10 pts. Ability to Persuade (How well did the creative move the target audience closer to the action or encourage a change in thoughts) 1-10 pts. Judges PowerPoints (used at the discretion of judges to boost certain submissions which they identify as exemplary) – 0-10 pts.

Trophies are custom-made per our winners’ requests and are only available seasonally. Winner’s trophies are drop-shipped directly from our manufacturers. Trophies take 4-8 weeks, certificates take 3-6 weeks, depending on the date ordered.

Each award has an independent entry window and focus. Please see the links to each award for more information. You only need to register on the Summit Award Platform once; your registration will remain active for future entries.

You can enter the same work in multiple awards throughout the year. Each is judged on different criteria. If you need help deciding which award to enter, please contact our friendly office staff for assistance.

Entering the Summit Awards is fairly straight-forward using the Summit Awards Entry Platform.

  1. REGISTER – Fill-in your Contact & Company information. Click Save
  2. START ENTRY/UPLOAD CREATIVE – Using the pull-down fields, choose your category and then name your entry and client. Save it an move on to adding your creative work. Optionally, you can add credits for members of the creative and marketing team.
  3. SUBMIT ENTRY – Click Add More Entries to Cart until you are finished.

You will be able to return and add more entries at any time up until the final deadline. They will all be associated with your Account.

UNIQUE OFFERING: The Summit Awards is the only marketing recognition organization that offers winners their own user-controlled, awards-hosted website profile. These profiles are rich with features including portfolio linking, image gallery-hosting and a built-in WYSIWYG editor for easy control and updating.

If you are a Summit Award winner, simply log in the website (bottom of any page) and then go to Winner Microsites.

PROVEN SUCCESSFUL: These are proven successful promotional tools. The back-end controls are robust with an SEO manager and a meta tag generator to increase search engine ranking. Additionally, creating a winner profile is an opportunity to benefit from free publicity thanks to the high volume of traffic on the Summit Award’s website.

EASILY UPDATEABLE: From time to time, winners may need to update their Winner Microsite. Office moves, contact changes, rebranding, or company announcements. To update your Winner Microsite, log in with the user name/password that created it, navigate to yours, and click on the ‘edit’ button. Changes are published on-the-fly without needing an admin’s approval.


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