Sponsors were judged upon Creativity, Originality,
Distinguish-ability and level of Audience Engagement.
Best 360 Partnership
Partners who participated in an integrated marketing campaign developed and executed with ESSENCE and continued the engagement through programming or activations at the Festival.
Coca-Cola & McDonald’s
Best Consumer Environment
Original activations & themes that lived pre- and on-site through a multifaceted experience for consumers.
Walmart & Ford
Rookie of the Year
First-time Festival partner that committed at a sponsorship level and activated within at least one event or program extension.
Sponsor of the Year*
Embodied: Culture, Community and Commerce.
*Presenting and Major level sponsorship only
;contender must not have won the award in 2018
Entertainment All Star
Disney Studios and Parks