Aflac Takes Best of Show In ANA In-House Excellence Awards | About the ANA | ANA

Aflac Takes Best of Show In ANA In-House Excellence Awards

Citi’s In-House Agency Citi Creative Services Wins In-House Agency of the Year Honors

 ORLANDO, FL (June 14, 2023) — Aflac and Citi’s in-house agency Citi Creative Services took top honors at the ANA In-House Excellence Awards ceremony this year, winning Best in Show and In-House Agency of the Year, respectively.

The awards were presented last night during a gala ceremony at the 2023 ANA In-House Agency Conference in Orlando, FL.

The Best in Show award was for a campaign called “The Park Bench” that was part of a long-term Aflac initiative called “Close the Gap” that is designed to educate consumers about the gap created when health insurance coverage ends, and medical bills begin to pile up.

“The Park Bench,” created in collaboration with  XP Agency, follows a young girl named Bella whose father has been diagnosed with sickle cell disease, a disorder which disproportionately affects the African American community.

The film “tells a story we usually don’t see – the health disparities and unique health care challenges that exist in disparate communities – and introduces a new dimension of the Aflac Duck as a caring, emotional partner who lends support in difficult times,” the company’s award submission said.  “Aflac’s first foray into film was designed to demonstrate the brand’s purpose and create emotional connection with consumers beyond the traditional media landscape in a way that had never been done before.”

Citi Creative Services, an in-house advertising agency run by creatives, is structured with traditional agency roles but organized without an impeding hierarchy.

“This flat structure leads to inspiring ownership, smarter decision-making and greater autonomy for all team members,” the financial services company said.  “A nurturing work-life balance has led to strong employee retention – and an energetic culture has gained the attention of our internal partners. The team doubled in size in less than two years.”

The ANA In-House Excellence Awards showcased the most creative, strategic, and growth-driving marketing and advertising campaigns created by an in-house agency team or department. Any marketing asset or project created to promote a company’s brand, product, or service that ran at any time in 2022 was eligible to enter the competition. The competition was open to anyone working as part of an internal team, whether within a client-side marketer, retailer, media company, nonprofit, or educational institution. Both ANA members and nonmembers were able to participate.

The awards featured 12 categories and included a total of 39 category winners. Each category had a total of three winners: one grand prize winner and two category winners. The top five industry sectors represented in this year’s entries were: Banking and Financial Services; Healthcare; Food and Beverage; Travel, Transportation, Tourism and Hospitality; and Technology.

This year marked the introduction of a new award called the In-House GEM Award honoring work that  best exemplifies the accurate and authentic portrayal of women and/or girls in campaigns produced by in-house agencies and/or marketing teams.  The inaugural grand prize winner was the Kalmbach Feeds Marketing Team for a campaign entitled “Feed Your Dreams with Lainey Wilson.”  Three category winners were: Advocate Aurora Health for a campaign devoted to Women’s History Month, Chevron for “Energy Everywhere: Renewable Natural Gas,” and Heart Haus at CVS Health (with Saatchi & Saatchi) for “Here for Women.”

ANA In-House Excellence Award judges included more than 170 client-side marketers, agency executives, and in-house agency professionals. The candidates are screened by the ANA and are assigned to judge entries from the categories in which they have expertise. Main round judges evaluate the submissions on three key factors: strategy, creative execution, and results. An exclusive Grand Jury of executive client-side ANA members was assembled to select this year’s In-House Agency of the Year and Best in Show winner.


A full list of the winners can be accessed here.


The ANA’s (Association of National Advertisers) mission is to drive growth for marketing professionals, brands and businesses, the industry, and humanity. The ANA serves the marketing needs of 20,000 brands by leveraging the 12-point ANA Growth Agenda, which has been endorsed by the Global CMO Growth Council. The ANA’s membership consists of U.S. and international companies, including client-side marketers, nonprofits, fundraisers, and marketing solutions providers (data science and technology companies, ad agencies, publishers, media companies, suppliers, and vendors). The ANA creates Marketing Growth Champions by serving, educating, and advocating for more than 50,000 industry members that collectively invest more than $400 billion in marketing and advertising annually.

John Wolfe
Director of Communications
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