CSU students’ big NRL idea wins International Advertising Association contest

A campaign to recruit NRL players by asking them to celebrate their origins won students from Charles Sturt University this year’s International Advertising Association’s Big Idea challenge.


The winning team, along with jury chair Paul Swann and IAA president Heather Leembruggen, with a banner showing NRL players already signed up to the campaign

The CSU students won the contest after cracking a brief on behalf of United Way Australia. The brief challenged the students to help the non-profit organisation raise funds from high net worth individuals.

The final round saw five teams – two from CSU, one from University of Technology Sydney, one from Academy of Design Australia in Victoria and one from University of Canberra – make live presentations in front of an industry jury.

Jurors included The Works creative partner Paul Swann, MCN’s chief sales and marketing officer Mark Frain, Cummins & Partners chief media officer James Greet; Klick Communications owner Kim McKay, Mumbrella’s Tim Burrowes and United Way’s marketing and communications officer Janita Suter.

The CSU idea, to ask NRL players to donate their earnings from a single game to the cause, began to get traction as soon as the students reached out to three players, who then passed on the idea to others, who had themselves photographed holding up signs to promote the #MyOrigin hashtag. Radio personality Ray Hadley also recorded a message to endorse the campaign.

After announcing the winner, United Way’s Suter said she would present a video of the CSU campaign proposal to her organisation’s board.

The winning CSU team consisted of students Richie Robey, Adam Stacey, Meg Green, Pascale Greenberg, Larissa Harris, Lachlan Reid and Tara Guempel-Crothers (not in the photo below). They were led by faculty advisor Anne Llewellynn.


CSU’s winning Kajulu Red team

As well as the IAA trophy, all the winning students received a pass to next year’s Mumbrella360 conference in Sydney.


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