NGA Creative Choice Awards Categories

Marketing Categories

Connections Through Omnichannel

It’s proven that customers need connections to their communities and many of those connections now almost exclusively come in virtual formats.  Grocers have reached for social media platforms and digital communications tools year after year to engage their communities and share information through innovative campaigns on social media with creative graphics, pictures, videos and other mixed media. Have you utilized Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, YouTube, Pinterest, or Instagram? Let us know how you’ve defined success with your social media initiatives, whether it be event attendees, engagements, impressions, an increase in followers or other key performance indicators. Share with us how you’re telling your story and reaching your customers in new and creative ways in the digital space. Submissions may also include email campaigns, website enhancements, blogs, digital ads, texting initiatives and more.

Community Engagement

Independent grocers are the cornerstones of their communities and are constantly finding new ways to give back in the areas they serve. Entries in this category should demonstrate the ways the store(s) served a need within their community and engaged their shoppers to participate. Submission should be focused on demonstrations, outreach, sponsorship and contributions, buy-one-give-one promotions and more. Both in-store and parking lot/off-site event entries are welcome.

Traditional Media – TV, Radio and Print

Did your company utilize television, radio or print ads to communicate with your customers this year? Submit your original TV, radio (cannot be more than 60 seconds in length), print, billboard ads, and tell us how and why this exposure yielded positive results for your business. All entries in this category must have been broadcasted or published. Videos that were created for social media platforms, such as YouTube, should be submitted in category #1.


Grand Opening or Remodel

Have you held a grand opening or remodel? Enter this category to boast about this incredible feat. Any form of media is accepted, as long as marketing submissions support a store opening or remodel announcement.


Merchandising Categories


Local, Specialty or Emerging Products

What new and exciting products are you merchandising in your store? Tell us how you’re engaging shoppers through creative merchandising set-ups, demonstrations, recipes, partnerships and more to introduce local, specialty or emerging products to your customers. Did you work with new suppliers or collaborate with other vendors to satisfy emerging demands from your customers?


Seasonal Event

No one celebrates holidays throughout the year quite like an independent retailer.  Entries in this category should demonstrate the ways the store(s) used seasonal or day/month holidays to promote store engagement and products. Entries can include celebrations surrounding days such as National Hot Dog Day, Frozen Food Month, etc. or the traditional holidays: Easter, Fourth of July, Christmas, etc.


Center Store/Frozen/GM/HBC

Just about everything in the grocery store has changed over the past few years, including what happened in the center aisles. This category takes a closer look at excellence in merchandising in center store, frozen, general merchandise, beauty or healthy living products. Submissions should feature concepts and/or display visuals, including those that were virtual, that created excitement in any of these departments. Entries should specifically explain how merchandising efforts responded to the shifting consumer trends  (includes all edible and non-edible consumer packaged goods).


Fresh Departments
(includes Meat/Dairy/Deli/Bakery/Floral/Produce)

Tell us about innovative merchandising happening in your fresh departments, especially when faced with hurdles brought on by shifting dynamics. These submissions should highlight promotions of a product or product line in produce, meat, dairy, deli, bakery or floral. Be sure to provide visuals and any notable sales outcomes.


Special Recognition

 Kellogg’s Excellence in ESG Award 

The heart of a good business strategy focuses on wellbeing, people, community, sustainability and beyond.  Over the past few years retailers have made great strides in integrating and maintaining these elements that are categorized under the Environment, Social and Governance (ESG) approach. Is this methodology one that you’ve been incorporating? How have you enhanced your relationships with employees, suppliers, customers and communities? Integrated diversity, equity and inclusion efforts into your store? In what ways have you implemented changes to safeguard the environment?

Unilever’s People Positive Award

It goes without saying that retailers are on the front lines of their communities and in this prominent role, it’s essential to place an emphasis on diversity and inclusivity. Cultivating not only a diverse workforce but society takes work, and we know you’ve been diligently implementing new efforts to reflect these values. Tell us what steps you’ve taken to break down barriers and create a more inclusive environment. How have you celebrated your staff while inviting new perspectives? How have you elevated and developed underrepresented individuals? Tell us what diversity and inclusion efforts you have integrated.

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