Judging creative excellence

The Loeries aims to recognise, reward, inspire and foster creativity and innovation in the region by encouraging creatives to tell better stories.

Our panel of judges is tasked with the crucial job of helping the Loeries maintain our reputation as the ultimate benchmark across Africa and the Middle East. Our judging processes are of the highest standard and our juries are made up of accomplished representative leaders from around the world.

All entries are judged according to five criteria:

  1. An innovative concept, bringing new and fresh thinking by telling better stories;
  2. Excellent execution;
  3. Relevance to the brand;
  4. Relevance to the target audience; and
  5. Relevance to the chosen medium.

The Loeries represents creative excellence, therefore all entries need to be fresh and innovative.
Creative work that excels in the above criteria will be rewarded with a Gold, Silver or Bronze Loerie award.

Grand Prix Awards

If an entry is deemed to be truly exceptional and represents the highest standard of creativity and excellence, it will be considered for a Grand Prix award. The Grand Prix award cannot be awarded to any public service/charity or agency in-house/self-promotional entries.

The judges

Around 200 South African, regional and international judges have the formidable task to seek out work that is bold and innovative, and challenges convention.

The Loeries Official Rankings are used as a guide for the selection of judges, as well as experience and seniority in the brand communication industry. See the full 2019 Rankings here.

The Loeries Regional Advisory Committee facilitates judges from Africa and the Middle East, looking at the results from Loeries, and other industry and international awards to decide on eligible judges. Jury nominations are received from the associations represented on the Loeries Board and Committee, including: the Association for Communication and Advertising (ACA), the Brand Council South Africa (BCSA), the Creative Circle (CC), the Commercial Producers Association (CPA), IAB South Africa, the Exhibition Association of Southern Africa (EXSA), the South African Institute of Architects (SAIA), the South African Institute of the Interior Design Professions (IID), and the Public Relations Institute of Southern Africa (PRISA).

The representation of regional judges is based on entry numbers. At present 20% of the panel is made up of non-South African judges.

The Jury Presidents in the main categories are selected from outside the region, to ensure they provide an impartial oversight of the judging process.

An agency may only have one South African judge per panel: Agencies with different names are considered separate, irrespective of who owns them. For example, Aqua Online and Wunderman can each have a judge on a panel. If there is doubt as to the separation of the agencies, a further test is whether or not they have separate premises and accounting.

When considering the Loeries Official Rankings, agencies with different names will not be combined by the Loeries into any group points. EXAMPLE: credits from Aqua Online will not add to Wunderman’s tally.

The Loeries Committee has the final decision on all judging panels.

The judging procedure

All entries are judged anonymously; this means the judges do not know the agency that entered the work and they judge only on the merit of the entry.

The jury is not allowed to move entries between categories.

Judges' votes are confidential and are only seen by the jury chairman and the CEO of the awards. Judges are not allowed to score their own work, and are not allowed to participate in any discussion regarding their own work. Judges are not allowed to move entries between categories during judging.

Entries are judged in two rounds. In the first round, judges vote ‘in/out’ for each entry. Entries that make it through the first round are finalists. The finalists are then discussed by the panel, and judges are allowed to motivate for any piece that did not make the finalist list.

Judges vote again on the finalists and the entries are scored between zero and 100 by each judge. The final scores are not shared with the judges and it is the jury chairman's role to review the scores and determine which entries will be awarded.

Entries are judged according to the criteria given above and the scoring process does not guarantee that an award will be given to all finalists, or that an award will be given in every category. Entries in the main categories are eligible for Grand Prix, Gold, Silver and Bronze Loeries, while Craft entries are eligible for a Craft Gold Award as well as a Craft Certificate.

All judges’ votes are submitted electronically and counting is automated. There is no manual ballot counting. The results for each round are printed out and signed by both the jury chairman and Loeries CEO. Signed copies of the ballots are kept for one year after the judging takes place.

The Loeries electronic judging system has been audited and the results each year are audited by Faitz Chartered Accountants, Inc. The auditing process includes an audit of all the signed results against the final published results.

Discussion during judging

The scores from the first round are used to determine the preliminary list of finalists. All judges will have an opportunity to view the finalists and to discuss these entries, as follows:

  1. All discussion must take place in the presence of the jury president of the panel.

  2. Judges may not participate in discussion on their own entry. They should leave the room during discussion of their entry. If necessary, the jury president or Loeries administrator can direct questions to the judge in private and feed that info back to the jury.

  3. Judges will be allowed to introduce discussion by talking work up, but not by passing negative comment.

  4. Discussion after the first round: If an entry has not been voted in as a finalist, a judge may offer support for that piece, and make a recommendation for it to be included in the list of finalists. After listening to the judge, and offering additional comments, the judges will vote with a show of hands to decide if it should go through as a finalist. A judge may make comments in support of any pieces in the list of finalists. Once the discussion of finalists is complete, then the judges will score each finalist.

  5. Discussion after second round scoring is complete: Once all the judges have completed their scores for a category, a wrap-up discussion is permitted. This may include guidance on potential Grand Prix awards, the overall standard of the category, and input to the jury president. The aim is not for agreement or consensus to be reached, but primarily to ensure the jury president gets relevant feedback from the panel, and so the jury president can provide their opinion on the work.

  6. If a judge has any claim against an entry, eg, they feel the concept is not new and ‘has been done before’, or they would like to question the flighting dates, then the judge must take this up with the CEO or the jury president, noting: each query will be recorded in writing and followed up while the judging continues. The entry must be treated by the panel as “innocent until proven guilty” and scored accordingly. The panel must not be influenced by unsubstantiated negative comments. The jury president, with assistance from the CEO of the Loeries, will make a decision on each query. In this way, the entry will not have been compromised if the query is found to be invalid (eg, if the entry did meet the flighting criteria).

  7. Under no circumstances, should judges make negative remarks during the judging process, such as: “This has been done before.”

General guidelines

  • The jury president’s role is to advise and guide the jury, to assist jurors during the judging and to determine the final statues awarded, and if any entries are eligible for the Grand Prix award.
  • All scores will be compiled via the Loeries’ electronic judging management system and presented in writing to the jury president. The Loeries CEO will give the jury president guidelines on how many Grand Prix, Gold, Silver, Bronze and Certificates to consider for each category, based on the relative weighting of each award as well as statues awarded in previous years. The jury president will record their final decisions in writing and sign the final ballot. No changes to the jury president’s decisions will be made thereafter.
  • All original ballot sheets will be stored for the full year after the results have been announced.
  • All categories will be judged in the same manner.
  • All entries must meet all rules and eligibility criteria.
  • No work created for the Loeries can be entered.
  • Agency in-house/self-promotional work will be awarded no higher than a Silver Loerie.
  • Submissions will only be accepted during the judging period. Any claims made after the final results have been recorded will be noted, but will have no influence on the awards given, unless there is a gross violation of the terms and conditions of entry. In such a case, the Loeries board will make any necessary decisions.


Finalists will be announced each day during Judging Week as the results become available. All winners will be announced at the awards ceremonies during Loeries Creative Week.

Please check the Loeries terms and conditions for additional rules of entry and submission criteria.