MX Award Winners

Grand MX Campaign of the Year

Maryland Health Exchange (Agency: GMMB)

Knowing that cost is often the biggest barrier to coverage, this campaign had to shift Marylanders’ thinking to how having health insurance helps you manage your budget when so much else is unpredictable.

Unexpected is a state-wide integrated campaign that includes commercials and radio ads, social and digital ads, influencer partnerships, print ads, and out-of-home placements. Our Unexpected campaign was met with a record-breaking 182,166 enrollments, including a 3% increase among Black Marylanders and a 9% increase among Hispanic Marylanders—two of our main target audiences.


Runner-Up Campaign of the Year

BGE (Agency: ICF)

BGE needed to strategically illustrate the overarching benefits that small businesses can receive from the program, and convey it in a manner simplified enough for anyone to grasp.

The video launched via BGE’s YouTube channel on April 29, 2022, with the title: “Small Businesses: Save up to 70% on Upgrades That Lower Your Energy Costs”. Since then, it has generated more than 141,470 views.

The video was also used for Streaming Video paid advertisements from June through September 2022. During that time, it generated 2,056,349 impressions and 5,942 clicks, leading to over 4,150 website sessions. It drove 205 direct conversions – achieving a direct conversion rate of 3.45%.

2nd Runner-Up Campaign of the Year

National Aquarium

What happens when you invite artists to reimagine the National Aquarium experience into a one-of-a-kind immersive event? The answer is Voyages. For each event—or “chapter”—in the Voyages series, the National Aquarium identified a Baltimore-based artist to spend time with their exhibits and expert staff, performing research on a conservation theme as they connect with scientists in the field to learn about their work. From these sparks of inspiration, the artist then creates an original work that translates all they’ve learned into an experience for event guests that presents their conservation theme through a unique artistic lens. Each chapter features local food and beverage vendors and culminates in an after party with a performance from a Baltimore-based headliner, resulting in an experience that is truly a representation and a celebration of the city we’re proud to call home.

In 2022, its first two Voyages events sold out and exceeded projected revenue by 68%. Voyages Chapter 1 and 2 saw over 1,000 reservations combined and had over an 80% show rate.

Additionally, the Voyages attendee demographics were notably different than its regular Aquarium visitors, skewing younger (average 37.4 years vs. 40.4 years) and more racially diverse (33% Black/African American vs. 13%), moving the needle closer toward Baltimore City demographics.

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Elements of Marketing CAMPAIGNS

Best New Brand Identity Campaign of the Year

SECU Credit Union

SECU wanted to refine their brand essence which was unveiled with the new “Here’s to the Seekers” campaign. This campaign is the culmination of the credit union’s evolution to providing holistic financial wellness for those who expect and are seeking a better banking experience. SECU’s new brand identity and campaign reflect their comprehensive approach to financial wellness, their commitment to taking the extra step or additional minutes for a member, to nurturing personal connections, and to always choosing to do the right thing.

(Additional Credits: Katie Leineweber, AVP, Brand Strategy, SECU; Nicole Antar, Senior Manager, Marketing Production, SECU)

Best Rebrand Campaign of the Year

Global Business Alliance (Agency: Beyond Definition)

With a growing and diverse membership base working toward a united mission, the Organization for International Investment needed a new brand identity to lead its organization into the future. OFII selected Beyond Definition as its partner to evolve its brand to better reflect the organization’s global audience and mission. They worked with a wide range of passionate stakeholders to develop a brand they could unite behind, starting with a new name for the organization that created more clarity and opportunities for advocacy and messaging: the Global Business Alliance. They created a modern visual identity that  referenced their past and told a powerful new story about the movement of international companies coming together to invest in America and create a positive impact here. The new logo reflects a proactive and impactful identity, uniting to form a star shape, symbolic of American patriotism and working to advance the American economy.

(Additional Credits: Jen Fose, Creative Director, Beyond Definition; Eliza Rownaghi, Designer, Beyond Definition)

Best Marketing Collateral Campaign of the Year

Alliance Franchise Brands

The pandemic changed the way we communicate and conduct business. Alliance Franchise Brand Members needed to adapt quickly to survive, and so did their customers, so they created product kits and marketing materials to help their Members sell safety signage, branded PPE, and print and mail services to targeted industries, ensuring those businesses could relaunch and reopen safely to keep their clients safe. These kits included a variety of marketing materials, from sell sheets and postcards, to social media posts and customer emails. Marketing materials were shared with our Members to customize, download and use for self-promotion in their local markets.

Best Market Research Campaign of the Year

HEX Performance (Agency: SR&B Advertising)

HEX Performance is a CPG company in the laundry category. After success and growth from brick & mortar sales, they wanted to grow online sales through their website and across various 3rd parties. The Persona Development project was a comprehensive project to help HEX Performance understand their customers and market position at a highly intimate level. SR&B Advertising provided a more scientific and granular approach to the Persona Development Project for HEX Performance. Through a written description for each Persona, alongside an image selected specifically for each Persona, the client now has an accurate depiction of who their customers are.

(Additional Credits: David Schaefer, VP, SR&B Advertising; Cortney Geare & Heidi Traband, Designers, SR&B Advertising)

Best Marketing Technology Campaign of the Year

Integrated Marketing Campaigns

Best B2B Campaign of the Year

Brookes Publishing

ASQ Online helps early childhood programs scale up their efforts to check young children’s development, a critical step in ensuring healthy outcomes. In March 2020, Brookes launched a campaign to increase adoption of the online platform among users of the paper-and-pencil version, the longstanding industry leader. Brookes created new web pages, email campaigns, advertising, live demos, and an interactive price quote requestor. By the end of 2020, Brookes acquired 678 new accounts, a 295% increase over the previous year, and exceeded the sales forecast. Brookes not only surpassed their own targets, they enabled early childhood professionals to support young children’s healthy development during an unprecedented health crisis.

(Additional Credits: Amy Clause, Senior Marketing Manager, Brookes Publishing; Harry Pauff, Digital Marketing Manager, Brookes Publishing)

Best B2C Campaign of the Year

BGE (Agency: Honeywell)

BGE launched a bring-your-own-thermostat (BYOT) program in May 2020. Prior to launching Connected Rewards℠, BGE conducted focus groups to get a better understanding of perceptions of a BYOT program, incentives or barriers to participation and review potential program messages, names, logos and marketing collateral. After launch, BGE executed a marketing strategy that consisted of program brand development, videos, landing pages, social media, local Cable TV and streaming video (OTT). Marketing highlighted the $100 first-year savings which would ensure their customers would have every opportunity to save on their utility bills while many were experiencing financial hardships or spending more time at home.

Best Nonprofit Campaign of the Year

Feeding America (Agency: R2integrated)

Feeding America partnered with R2integrated to maximize brand reach in order to drive donations and increase revenue while meeting their holistic mission of not only reaching, but helping families in need. With increased visibility and seamless experiences, donors were able to easily search for and find Feeding America’s site from Google and other top search engines. This led to notable increases, achieving ~600% growth in paid search revenue compared to the previous year. By understanding Feeding America’s brand pillars, voice, and overarching vision, R2integrated could pivot existing approaches to ensure that not only was the relevant and right message presented amidst the pandemic, but that all connected elements architected one cohesive, available resource, reaching those most in need.

(Additional Credits: Rachel Curasi, Director of Media, R2integrated)

Best Event Marketing Campaign of the Year

SECU Credit Union

SECU Kindness was a month-long campaign to spread kindness and raise funds to support the SECU MD Foundation. This campaign was rooted in the idea that if we each performed just one act of kindness we could inspire others and grow our impact exponentially. SECU created “Kindness Kits” which were offered to members and the general public at no cost. They successfully raised $50,000, distributed 1,300 Kindness Kits, and performed a total of 6,176 acts of kindness – just imagine the ripple effect this had in the community!

(Additional Credits: Sarah Ryan, AVP, Community Engagement, SECU; Katie Leineweber, AVP, Brand Strategy, SECU)

Digital / Interactive CAMPAIGNS

Best Email Marketing Campaign of the Year

ExxonMobil – Lubricants North America (Agency: Weber Shandwick)

In 2020, the ExxonMobil commercial and industrial lubricant lines of business developed and executed three distinct lead generation and nurture programs for their target Construction, Power Generation, and Mining sectors. Each program provided digital materials, information, and access to Mobil resources necessary to move prospective leads through their buying journey and distinguish them as marketing qualified before being shared with the sales team. Even with the executional challenges due to the pandemic, Mobil still managed to achieve lead and MQL goals set at the start of the year and have seen a positive return on investment for the campaigns.

Best Social Media Campaign of the Year

Moser Consulting

When the pandemic started in 2020, Moser, like many companies, had trouble with employee engagement. They realize they had new co-workers—their pets! They asked people to share pics on Moser’s internal Slack channel of their ‘unintentional’ new co-workers. The response was immediate and long lasting. The photos flooded in and they picked several every week to share with the company and the world over social media. Moser created photo posts of their new co-workers in organic Facebook and LinkedIn campaigns.

(Additional Credits:Tia Hapner, Graphic Design Specialist, Moser Consulting; Nikki Cremer, Social Media Specialist, Moser Consulting)

Best Video Marketing Campaign of the Year

BGE (Agency: Honeywell)

With the launch of BGE’s new Connected Rewards℠ program in early 2020, BGE sought to find unique ways to generate awareness and subsequently drive engagement and enrollment. BGE sought to create two videos: one targeting prospective customers to explain what the Connected Rewards program is and another video targeting current Connected Rewards participants, explaining what adjustment events are and how it affects them when these events are happening. BGE wanted to make it clear to participants that these adjustment events will only affect the temperature in their homes by a few degrees, with minimal impact on comfort.

Best Single Unit Digital Advertisement Campaign of the Year

BGE (Agency: ICF)

BGE wanted to remind customers that BGE could help them save energy and money during the pandemic, but most importantly, BGE wanted to make them smile. Thus, BGE’s “Catch and Save” game was born, served up via a high-impact display ad. In just two months, the ad garnered over 360,000 impressions and 12,000 clicks through to the BGE Smart Energy Savers Program website. The ad also resulted in a 17.10% engagement rate and a 3.75% interaction rate, which outperformed the industry standard of 2.30%. With the “Catch and Save” high-impact display ad game, BGE was able to reach a broad array of its customers, provide critical information on energy-saving offers and engage them in an upbeat, entertaining way.

Best Digital Marketing Campaign of the Year

Maryland Department of Health (Agency: Alexander & Tom, Inc.)

Alex & Tom, Inc. worked with the Maryland Department of Health to create a toolkit website educating the public about preventing opioid overdoses using Naloxone, then conducted an educational outreach campaign for the toolkit. Alex & Tom nearly tripled their 1.5 million impressions goal, delivering ~4.2 million in total. They targeted business owners in each Maryland county, utilizing multiple digital channels (both paid and organic) and dedicating budgets that corresponded to the severity of reported drug use.


Best Single Unit Print Advertisement Campaign of the Year

BGE (Agency: ICF)

BGE quickly responded to the impact of COVID-19 with a revised marketing strategy and approach to the Energy Solutions for Business (ESFB) creative campaign, promoting the energy efficiency program with the same look and feel, but featuring updated messaging and imagery. Grounded in extensive research, customer insights and ongoing market analysis, this print advertisement recognizes the shifting needs and priorities of BGE’s business customers. It also addresses how energy efficiency upgrades can help businesses “stretch critical resources” for increased resiliency and preparedness for the future.

(Additional Credits: Matt Buecker, Manager, BGE; Jacquelyn Zichos, Senior Marketing Specialist, BGE)

Best Print Advertisement Campaign of the Year

BGE (Agency: ICF)

BGE quickly responded to the impact of COVID-19 with a revised marketing strategy and approach to the Energy Solutions for Business (ESFB) creative campaign, promoting the energy efficiency program with the same look and feel, but featuring updated messaging and imagery. Grounded in extensive research, customer insights and ongoing market analysis, this print advertisement recognizes the shifting needs and priorities of BGE’s business customers. It also addresses how energy efficiency upgrades can help businesses “stretch critical resources” for increased resiliency and preparedness for the future.

Best Direct Mail Campaign of the Year

Tiny Jewel Box (Agency: KLUTCH)

For the 2020 holiday season, Tiny Jewel Box invested in a unique haptic direct mail piece bringing them one of the most successful in store and online sales in their history. The holiday direct mail piece arrived in a unique fully printed carrier envelope with a beautiful booklet covered with a shiny clear and white foil stamped pattern reminiscent of a holiday gift. Wrapped in luxury, the interior pages tell a story, beginning with a personal message from the owners, showcasing events and highlighting designer pieces. Altogether fulfilling and staying true to the Tiny Jewel Box brand—luxurious, unique and memorable.

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