‘DadGPT,’ smokeless Snoop score top local ad honors for Martin Agency, Brandcenter

Richmond Show 1

Attendees watch the award-winning work at this year’s Richmond Show, held Friday at Altria Theater. (Jonathan Spiers photo)

An AI-powered project for a national home improvement retailer was aptly among the top award winners at this year’s AI-themed Richmond Show, the Advertising Club of Richmond’s annual ceremony recognizing standout local ad work.

Held Friday evening at Altria Theater, the awards show saw another Martin Agency sweep, with the downtown-based industry giant grabbing three of the five best-in-show awards. Two of those were for its “Snoop Goes Smokeless” campaign for Solo Stove that went viral late last year.

DadGPT

The ‘DadGPT’ app project took top honors in the student category.

Top honors also went to VCU Brandcenter in the design category for the latest edition of its “Sixty” annual magazine, and in the student category to Brandcenter students Alyssa Hwee, Alex McKinley and Agrim Prakash for their “DadGPT – Empowering Home Improvement” project for retailer Home Depot.

Using artificial intelligence to create a “father figure” that advises users on home improvement choices, the DadGPT project was a fitting honoree at this year’s show, titled “Ad_Machina” in a nod to the rise and “potential threat” of AI in the ad industry.

Martin’s “Snoop Goes Smokeless” campaign took best-in-shows in the advertising and interactive categories. Starring Snoop Dogg as Solo Stove’s “smokesman,” the campaign featured a 30-second spot that was teased with a social media post in which the rapper said he’d decided to “give up smoke.”

Martin also took top honors in the production category for its “The Healing Dice” campaign for Donate Life America. The organ donation awareness campaign targeted the gaming community with a Dungeons & Dragons theme and collectible gaming dice containing “organs.”

Those awards were among nearly 60 trophies presented in this year’s show, including gold, silver and bronze Bridge awards depicting Richmond’s arched CSX bridge.

Martin took home the most awards with 14, including five golds, three silvers and three bronzes. Other gold award winners included Simkins Lightbulb Co., Trailhead Creative, Overcoast Music + Sound, Liberty University and the Brandcenter.

Kent Brockwell

Madison+Main’s Kent Brockwell was named Ad Person of the Year. (Alex Oswald Photography)

Silvers also went to Campfire & Co. (2), Liberty (2), Colab, Longwood University, Simkins, Spang, The Grits Collective (2), Tiny Lion Music and Two Tango Collaborative.

Entries were judged by Hayley Marks of United Entertainment Group in New York; Joy Barnett of MullenLowe Group in Austin, Texas; Dane Rahlf of D.C.-based Weber Shandwick; and Scott Model of Bigger Logo in Los Angeles.

Walid Al Tinawi 1

Scholarship winner Walid Al-Tinawi. (Alex Oswald Photography)

Non-competitive recognitions included Ad Person of the Year, an honorary title for local industry contributions that this year went to Kent Brockwell, communications director at Madison+Main. Brockwell was credited for copywriting and concepting contributions to many of the downtown agency’s campaigns, as well as various volunteering efforts in the community.

Isabel Diaz

Isabel Diaz

Isabel Diaz, a junior in VCU’s undergraduate creative advertising track, received the $2,500 Women In Advertising Scholarship. Walid Al-Tinawi, a Brandcenter student set to graduate in 2025, received the $1,500 Excellence In Creative Education Scholarship.

Bridget Guckin was announced as the ad club’s next president, and outgoing president Yasir Afzal emceed the ceremony, one of several events put on by the club each year. Proceeds from ticket sales and sponsorships contribute to professional education and other programs and events like the recent Ad Bowl critiquing Super Bowl ads.

Richmond Show 1

Attendees watch the award-winning work at this year’s Richmond Show, held Friday at Altria Theater. (Jonathan Spiers photo)

An AI-powered project for a national home improvement retailer was aptly among the top award winners at this year’s AI-themed Richmond Show, the Advertising Club of Richmond’s annual ceremony recognizing standout local ad work.

Held Friday evening at Altria Theater, the awards show saw another Martin Agency sweep, with the downtown-based industry giant grabbing three of the five best-in-show awards. Two of those were for its “Snoop Goes Smokeless” campaign for Solo Stove that went viral late last year.

DadGPT

The ‘DadGPT’ app project took top honors in the student category.

Top honors also went to VCU Brandcenter in the design category for the latest edition of its “Sixty” annual magazine, and in the student category to Brandcenter students Alyssa Hwee, Alex McKinley and Agrim Prakash for their “DadGPT – Empowering Home Improvement” project for retailer Home Depot.

Using artificial intelligence to create a “father figure” that advises users on home improvement choices, the DadGPT project was a fitting honoree at this year’s show, titled “Ad_Machina” in a nod to the rise and “potential threat” of AI in the ad industry.

Martin’s “Snoop Goes Smokeless” campaign took best-in-shows in the advertising and interactive categories. Starring Snoop Dogg as Solo Stove’s “smokesman,” the campaign featured a 30-second spot that was teased with a social media post in which the rapper said he’d decided to “give up smoke.”

Martin also took top honors in the production category for its “The Healing Dice” campaign for Donate Life America. The organ donation awareness campaign targeted the gaming community with a Dungeons & Dragons theme and collectible gaming dice containing “organs.”

Those awards were among nearly 60 trophies presented in this year’s show, including gold, silver and bronze Bridge awards depicting Richmond’s arched CSX bridge.

Martin took home the most awards with 14, including five golds, three silvers and three bronzes. Other gold award winners included Simkins Lightbulb Co., Trailhead Creative, Overcoast Music + Sound, Liberty University and the Brandcenter.

Kent Brockwell

Madison+Main’s Kent Brockwell was named Ad Person of the Year. (Alex Oswald Photography)

Silvers also went to Campfire & Co. (2), Liberty (2), Colab, Longwood University, Simkins, Spang, The Grits Collective (2), Tiny Lion Music and Two Tango Collaborative.

Entries were judged by Hayley Marks of United Entertainment Group in New York; Joy Barnett of MullenLowe Group in Austin, Texas; Dane Rahlf of D.C.-based Weber Shandwick; and Scott Model of Bigger Logo in Los Angeles.

Walid Al Tinawi 1

Scholarship winner Walid Al-Tinawi. (Alex Oswald Photography)

Non-competitive recognitions included Ad Person of the Year, an honorary title for local industry contributions that this year went to Kent Brockwell, communications director at Madison+Main. Brockwell was credited for copywriting and concepting contributions to many of the downtown agency’s campaigns, as well as various volunteering efforts in the community.

Isabel Diaz

Isabel Diaz

Isabel Diaz, a junior in VCU’s undergraduate creative advertising track, received the $2,500 Women In Advertising Scholarship. Walid Al-Tinawi, a Brandcenter student set to graduate in 2025, received the $1,500 Excellence In Creative Education Scholarship.

Bridget Guckin was announced as the ad club’s next president, and outgoing president Yasir Afzal emceed the ceremony, one of several events put on by the club each year. Proceeds from ticket sales and sponsorships contribute to professional education and other programs and events like the recent Ad Bowl critiquing Super Bowl ads.

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John Linthicum
John Linthicum
2 months ago

Congratulations Kent! Well deserved!

Kent Brockwell
Kent Brockwell
2 months ago
Reply to  John Linthicum

Thanks John!

William Willis
William Willis
2 months ago

I love seeing how much Ai is being developed and Adopted in Richmond. Richmond is truly becoming a AI Hub