Copywriters: Dig up those killed radio scripts

Oink Ink Radio announces their 14th annual Dead Radio Contest.

The Dead Radio Contest is a competition for advertising copywriters who have written radio scripts that for whatever reason (too provocative, too silly, or simply overlooked) were never selected by the client. The contest gives them an opportunity to bring their best script back to life, hence "Dead Radio."

The contest is international, so anyone around the world can enter. The Grand Prize Winner gets flown out to NY or LA and have their spot produced. Scripts submitted for competition must not have been previously produced by a client or its agency, and should be no longer than 60 seconds in length.

What began as a humble platform to shine light on overlooked–but great–radio ads has become an arena for writers to gain recognition for stellar work that isn’t always embraced by clients. However, the occasional reigning Dead spot has caused some clients to think twice about their initial rejection—and some ads have made it to the air after all.

“In fact,” according to Oink president, Dan Price, “since the contest began, about 7 or 8 winning spots went on to eventually win national awards.” Among them Radio Mercuries, Cannes Lions and several others. Since 1998 spots written for IKEA, Southwest Airlines, Durex, Miller Lite, Verizon and even M.A.D.D. have earned recognition as the best of the Dead.

Last year’s Grand Prize Winner Tommy Troncoso of BBDO/NY wrote a radio script for client Amp Energy Drink titled “Wright Brothers.” The spot features a comical dispute between the famous siblings before they went down in history as the fathers of flight. Amp originally passed on the script, but it got a second chance and a production courtesy of Oink Ink’s L.A. facility.

Find out more and enter at the Dead Radio Contest website.

AnonymousCoward's picture
Dabitch's picture

I know I ain't no copywriter, but the other day when I was talking to my offspring about what I do she wanted examples of media where ads can run (uh-oh, budding agencygrunt in the making?), and I started telling her of the different media, like "bus posters.. and uh...". A catfood ad popped up on TV and I used it, saying "OK, so there's the TV ad for that brand, once I wrote a radio ad for that brand and it went like this ".. and then you can also do ads in the magazines... blablabla etc.

So I just realized that I have an old radio script firmly lodged into my head, that I can call up and act out any time. One that was never presented to the client for whatever reason. And I entered that. Lets see how it does. :)