JUNE 26, 2013 #001
Actually, India is 2nd in the world in sharing. If you asked me a year ago, will Indians upload as much or share as much, I would have said no. Rajan Anandan Managing Director, Google India
Scam advertising propels India haul to 33 metals at Cannes Lions 2013 O
vertly, the celebrations are loud and deafening. Dig below the surface, and things get a bit muted. Up to a few years ago, the divided Indian advertising industry closed ranks at Cannes, and all Indian wins were celebrated, irrespective of which agency one the metal. Ten Indian agencies/companies, between them, won 33 lions, eight of which are golds. Interestingly, 23 of those lions came from the Press and Design categories. The big winners were TaprootIndia , which won 4 gold lions for its Farmer Suicides campaign done for the Times Of India, and Ogilvy, which has picked up 10 lions in all so far. In addition, Lowe Lintas + Partners India’s ‘Help A Child Reach 5’ film for Lifebuoy won a silver in the Film Craft category, but as an entry from Lowe London (as Lowe India does not enter awards), so Indian wins could actually be as much as 34, though technically the records will say 33. With 33 metals, the celebrations should have been raucous – but they’re not. There are murmurs of ‘real’ work not getting their due, while scam and proactive work have cornered many of the honours. “Winning for Lifebuoy, even if it’s a bronze, is a good thing. But to be very honest with you, I’m very disappointed
because I think it was India’s strongest entry. And it was in many categories, and I expected it to go a lot further than it has,” says Piyush Pandey, executive chairman and creative director, Ogilvy India. The divide – and the muted celebrations – is underlined when R Balki, Chairman and Chief Creative Officer with Lowe Lintas & Partners, India, says to Firstpost, “I’d really like to see where this work was all these days- where these museums are, where these exhibitions are and where these paintings are. I think it’s silly to tom-tom metals that have been won for work that nobody’s ever seen, that’s not affected anybody, that’s not really served the basic purpose of communication -- which is what this festival is all about.” Balki is obviously referring to the body of award winning scam work, ostensibly shown at exhibitions, etc. The worry must be that Indian entries haven’t done well at all in the ‘non-scam’ categories. Just the two metals in the Film and Film Craft categories – one by Ramesh Deo Productions for Nike (by JWT India) and the other for Lowe India, by Lowe London – tell the story. Of equal concern is the fact that the most awarded creatives at the Abbys 2013 were almost no shows at Cannes.
Let’s just do great work, truly great work and let’s have the guts to push it or make sure that our clients see the greatness in our work R. Balki Chairman and Chief Creative Officer, Lowe Lintas & Partners, India
History and usage teach us which ads are proactive
he best proof that an ad is a scam ad, sadly, is available sometime in the future. Take the Luxor campaign that you see alongside, one of the most awarded campaigns ever from India. Or take the Transasia Papers campaign that you see here. Between the two campaigns, they have won or been nominated to almost every advertising award in the world --- starting with the Abbys, going to the Spikes, the Clio, the Andy, the D&AD, the One Show and, of course, the Cannes Lions. Having been so decorated, one would assume that the clients would be delighted and that the campaigns would be so in-our-face that we would
tire of seeing them. Hoardings across the country would be carrying these advertisements, and front page solus ads would be peppered with the two campaigns. Finally, of course, the communication would have caused consumers to flock to the shops and buy Luxor highlighters and paper from Transasia Papers till retailers and wholesalers ran out of stocks. Did that happen? No. We never saw the ads again. Indeed, most of us, even those in advertising, marketing and media, never saw the ads at all till they surfaced at awards shows and were reproduced in trade magazines. And what of the Times of India campaign by TapRoot India, which
won four Golds at Cannes? It has the same formula as the Luxor and Transasia Papers campaigns. It features human faces. Then we see an extraordinarily complicated rendition of the faces (for Luxor, they was made out of highlighted words, for Transasia, they were made out of paper rolls and for Times of India, they are made out of hay). Then we see a logo (relevant in the cases of Luxor and Transasia and irrelevant in the case of Times of India) and minimalistic copy. That’s it. A simple formula for winning at Cannes. And the formula also suggests that, as in the cases of Luxor and Transasia, the consumer will never see the Times of India award winning campaign.
TapRoot India’s co-founder Santosh Padhi waves the Indian Tricolour after winning one of his agency’s four golds at Cannes 2013
McCann Erickson’s entry for Active Total Security Systems which won a Print Grand Prix at Goa drew a blank, Leo Burnett’s work for Tide Detergents (four silvers and a bronze across Print, Print Craft & Outdoor at Goa) won just a silver and Coke Studio (one gold, four silvers and a bronze across Design, Outdoor, Print, Integrated and Ambient at Goa) failed to impress the jurors.
And finally, there’s the issue of investing in awards. “I think there’s so much money being wasted in entering things so desperately. I can understand if you really create some good -- you create work like the Dove work or you create work for something or the Metro work -- Dumb Ways to Die. I think there’s some fabulous work. If you create work like that, yes, please tomtom it to the world but don’t create
silly, little visiting cards and paintings in the name of Farmer’s suicide or psychiatric wards,” he says. “We ought to be a lot more responsible as a community, we ought to be a lot more mature as a community. We should stop doing this. Let’s just do great work, truly great work and let’s have the guts to push it or make sure that our clients see the greatness in our work. Actually, the clients see a lot of greatness. Make sure that we have the guts to produce that kind of work for our clients (appreciate). Let the people see it, make sure our people see the great work. I’m sure, why can’t Dove work here? Why can’t a lot of the Metro work here? People are dying here, in Bombay and the railway crossing (idea) of Dumb Ways to Die, translated into Marathi or Hindi, would work as well. So, I think, those kinds of things can work, can be fabulous and we can do great work. We don’t have to find these twisted ways to try and win it. Let’s do it and then enter, there’s no issue. Otherwise, let’s not make fools of ourselves,” Balki adds. That’s how Balki and, increasingly a larger population in advertising and marketing, is seeing the majority of the 33 metals. They’re not winning communication that needs celebration; they’re a waste of time and a waste of money.
June 26, 2013 #001
issues of the day T
his paper is not an e-paper. It’s a digital paper, a paper created in the digital age we live in. It’s been two years since I joined Firstpost.com, fresh out of my almost fouryear stint as editor of Campaign India. The only element common to the two was that I was writing; otherwise, everything was as different as chalk and cheese. Campaign India was a fortnightly, which, in essence, meant that you got a break as soon as you put an issue to bed. Firstpost.com is a living, breathing, vibrant being. I go out for a smoke break and the home page has changed. It has no physical form and there’s none of the joy that I used to
experience when the first copy of Campaign India came to me from the printers. But there’s a terrific gratification you get as a writer when you see your work being published minutes after you write it, followed quickly by ‘likes’, tweets and comments (both bouquets and brickbats). The awesome reach, too, gives you a high. Most importantly, the high comes from the knowledge that you give the reader the news, the analysis and the opinion immediately, and that he or she can access the content on the device of his or her choosing, at a time of his or her convenience. I started loving the whole experience, especially when friends told me that they
relied on Firstpost for all the news, that they had downloaded the app, and so on. I got used to the new frenetic newsroom (compared to the calm, sedate Campaign India experience). And it got more frenetic. Anuradha Sengupta, who began, built and nurtured Storyboard, decided that she needed a break – and I was offered the job of editor at Storyboard. Thankfully, because both Firstpost.com and Storyboard have the same owners, I was allowed to continue my role at Firstpost. Thus started a schizoid existence, toggling between ideas for one and ideas for the other, working with different teams at two different physical locations.
And not the least, I was toggling between two media – TV and digital. This digital paper is a result of the osmosis between the two, leveraging the advantages of television and the advantages of digital, drawing on the team creating the TV show and the team creating the digital news product and energized by the enthusiasm in both. This is the first issue. Like Firstpost.com, it’ll keep changing as technology and our grasp of it allows us to give you a richer consumption experience. This is just the beginning. And, as we say in advertising, watch this space.
What’s up with everyone? Chicken Little, are we?
So, the broadcaster fraternity doesn’t feel that the ratings system works any more. So, the advertisers don’t feel the broadcasters are being reasonable. So, the media agencies don’t feel they can price broadcast inventories right without regular data updates. So what? Given that my deep involvement with audience measurement, print or television, is scarcely a state secret, you would expect this to be a prognostication on alternative metrics, mutually acceptable compromises, negotiation paths and the like. As it happens, this piece will offer none of the palliatives above. In fact, it will go in quite the opposite direction. It will argue that the best thing to have happened to audience measurement in a long time is this candid acknowledgement that all is not well in the state of Denmark. I ask you to throw your mind back to Sam Balsara’s keynote address at the Advertising Conclave that preceded Goafest 2006. While the exact words elude me, he reminisced about how he had seen the Advertising Industry in India grow from Rs. 100 crores to Rs. 1,000 crores to Rs. 10,000 crores and how his fondest hope was to see it climb the next order of magnitude to Rs. 100,000 crores while he was still in action.
Sam is indispensible to the industry and has the stamina of a herd of wildebeest so we can be sure he will preside over this transition too. The only question is: when? It is reasonable to assume that a large percentage of the aspirational number must be media billings, say 75%. That would demand a media spend of Rs. 75,000 crores. TV and Print would account for about 40% each, giving both Rs. 30,000 crores or ~US $ 50 billion. Which, ladies and gentlemen, is ~2x the size that TV advertising in India is right now. How will we bridge this chasm? Consider this. Over 500 million people aged 4 and above consume at least an hour of television every day. That’s 3.5 billion person-hours of TV viewed per week; upwards of 35 billion person-minutes of TV advertising served. That fetches a measly Rs. 300 crores of advertising revenue to the entire television industry. For the last several years I have been privy to or participant in discussions that sought a basic change in the method of valuing television advertising inventory: from the relative measure- Cost per Rating Point (CPRP), to the absolute measure Cost per Thousand (CPT or CPM). The
practical impediment was two-fold. The measurement system was systematically falling behind the pace at which TV penetration was growing. The popular mode of reporting was relative and not absolute. The latter was particularly galling because each rating point represented many more consumers in each succeeding year. In the meanwhile, the advertiser and media agency communities remained fixated on protecting CPRP at historic levels. In effect, CPTs for television advertising steadily moved south. Let me put this in context. Print CPTs steadily grew in spite of the fact that the medium itself registered a much slower pace of growth and in any case had a much smaller user footprint. When Digitisation in the form of DAS began rollout late last year, consumers saw a massive improvement in user experience: more channel choice and crisp digital quality instead of the grainy and noisefilled frames they had been used to from decades of analog transmission. It is empirically known from many international experiences that analog sunsets lead to sharp and irreversible increases in television time spent. We are talking about more viewers watching better
quality TV for more time than they have ever spent before. Except, that in the current scheme of things, all of this was making nary an impact upon the broadcasters’ cash flows. Now chew on this. A larger and healthier broadcast business is in everyone’s interest, not just the broadcasters’. Content offerings will expand and improve. Time spent will grow creating more advertising opportunities. Marketeers will have access to more sharply defined, better-segmented audiences as better-targeted offerings reach the viewer. And you can only get to this Promised Land if the broadcast industry has the resources to go there first. The current measurement system was falling short. The phase we are in now is of creative destruction. The elements are all in ferment and the finest minds on every side of the debate have their mind engaged on what is, after all, the deus ex machina that animates the broadcast industry. It seems like the worst of times but as Charles Darney told us, very often those are also the best of times. Let the revelries continue.
JUNE 26, 2013 #001
the really long interview
rajan anandan MANAGING DIRECTOR, GOOGLE INDIA
In an increasingly digital world, there is no company or brand that dominates or captures our impagination and our conversations as much as Google does. So when we got an opportunity to meet Google India Managing Director Rajan Anandan, we jumped at the chnace, especially in the light of the recent controversies such as PRISM and the fascinating growth of mobile Internet. Firstpost.com CEO Durga Ragunath and Storyboard editor Anant Rangaswami spoke to Rajan Anandan. Here’s the converstion. How much and how strongly do you think Google will push the US Government (in the context of PRISM? Rajan Look, as you know, like you said, this is at the core of what Google is about and it is absolutely at the essence of what we’re about. So, I don’t think you will see any of our leadership team, Larry, Sergei behave any differently with any government than we have any where around the world. So, I think our principles are principles and I think the fact that no Government has a backdoor entry into Google and at the same time, we do comply by all local laws. When laws get changed, I think there are certain countries where the laws don’t really bend themselves to a way that we want to do business and you’ve seen what Google has done in those instances So, I think, what we’ve said and what Google has to say, we have said. But I must tell you that every Government, it’s not just the US Government, is very powerful around the world. Right. But I think certain markets are infinitely, perhaps more important, than other markets. Rajan Sure. You know, in some countries we have larger presence, with more people, more users, than others. You’ve said in the past that when you come in to emerging markets, you take the responsibility of scaling the internet very seriously. When you say scaling the internet, in terms of big efforts in India, what would they be? What would be the 3-4 things that Google’s focusing on? Rajan So, the first is, India, even if you go back to 2008, had about 30 million users and the end of 2012, 150 million users. Based on Industry estimates, India will exit 2013 with 200 million users, which is twice the number of Japan. Japan used to be the 3rd largest in the world. What’s interesting about these 50 million users who are being added to India this year- they’re mobile first. So, Mobile is a very big priority for us today. And, within Mobile, it’s really Android, which is the smartphone operating system… and also making sure that all our products work seamlessly on all mobile platforms. So, mobile internet? Rajan Mobile internet is a big deal.
And when you say mobile internet, is it focused on devices and software in devices? Rajan Yeah, so, the first part of it is mobile devices. So, think of it as affordable smartphones. Affordable android smartphones. When I joined Google two and a half years ago, there were less than 2 million smartphone users. By the end of this year, there’ll be 70 million smartphone users.
ACCEPTED dotcom since 1999
It’s a pretty interesting thing. 500 million Indians watch TV but it’s one TV in a house. It’s not your personal entertainment device. So, are we seeing a breakthrough nano product? Rajan Actually, the breakthrough in the computing industry, where I was before I came to Google, was for, the last decade, we talked about having a sub Rs.10,000 computer. Well, actually, sub Rs.10,000 happened, it just wasn’t a form of computer that we thought it was going to be. And the inflection was caused by the sub Rs.10,000 smartphone. The fastest selling smartphones in India today are priced between Rs.6000 and Rs.8000 rupees. With Rs. 6000 - Rs. 8000 rupees, there will be 70 million Indians with smartphones. So, we’ve got a big focus on Androids, working with (obviously, we don’t make the hardware) hardware partners such as Samsung and others… And now, today we learn that you will be getting into retail with Android Nation… Rajan That’s very premature. The media seems to be writing all about it. So, are you saying that it’s not happening? Rajan It’s very premature. We are in discussions. It may or may not happen. But, some media houses like to write about it. We haven’t announced anything yet. Getting back to price-point and mobile… Rajan I said about a year ago that we’d cross the $100 dollar barrier before the end of this year; the 100-dollar barrier was actually crossed at the end of 2012. And I think the new barrier would be 50 dollars, which is about Rs. 2,500, or Rs. 3,000. Assuming the Rupee stays at 60, the
Rs.3,000 barrier will be crossed in the next 12 months.
What will we have and what do you think we’ll lose in that experience, Rajan? Rajan I think the screen size will be a little small, so you won’t get a Mega for Rs.3,000. I think , other than that, the operating system is the same. So, it’s the quality that you can feel- the design and the experience. But our view is that basically the people who are buying affordable smartphones today were never on the internet; don’t know what the internet is about. It is the very first idea of the internet experience. And you’d be amazedfor them, the experience is staggering. You know, because they’ve never been on the internet. What do you think are the benefits that will accrue to these new users? The first-time users of the internet? Rajan In terms of what are the benefits of them getting online? So for them it’s a whole set of things -- they get email, so they start communicating with other people, they spend a lot of time on social network, so, they go to facebook, etc. They spend a lot of time in job searches, a lot of them are students who have graduated and who are able to buy 3000-4000 rupee phones. Search queries for jobs on mobile devices are exploding. So, they’re looking for employment. Today if you look at it, most Indian households have only one TV. It’s a pretty interesting thing. 500 million Indians watch TV but it’s one TV in a house. It’s not your personal entertainment device. So, which are the categories, you think, will benefit from the exposure of the smartphone? Rajan Actually, every category today, whether it’s jobs, e-commerce, real estate, entertainment, you name it, between 15-40% of activities are coming from mobile devices. So, as smartphones grow, as mobile internet grows, all these categories will grow. Youtube has 50 million users in India. 48% are desktop users and 10 million are unique mobile. But 38% of our Youtube views come from Mobile. Are you talking about uploading? Rajan People who view. Actually, India is 2nd in the world in sharing. If you asked me a year ago, will Indians upload as much or share as much, I would have said no. So, when you bring in Mobile, you bring in Video, you bring in our connectivity, which, at the end of it, has to be at the base of all of this for users to use it more, spend more time, pay at some point perhaps. And everything hits this ceiling when we start talking about a sustained and a fairly reliable experience. Because none of us in the publishing industry, none of us perhaps even from Google, can very categorically say ‘We’re going to get this experience’ all over India. So, how are we going to get around that? Is there any way to innovate despite having these huge infrastructural challenges? Rajan So, there are a couple of things -- clearly, we do have bandwidth challanges. Youtube should be at 200 million viewers not 50 million. So, I’ll tell you what we’re doing. What we’ve done is, we’re trying to make things work seamlessly on narrow bandwidth. So ,for instance, Youtube gets more optimized to narrow bandwidth. I don’t know whether you’ve used Google Hangouts, but if on a narrow-band network now, it automatically either blurs the image or takes the image out. So, that’s automatic. You had to figure it out and do it earlier but you no longer have to, but because Google Plus has been working on optimizing Hangouts which are bandwidth constrained. So, we will continue to keep working on our product so that we can optimize for narrow bandwidth also. Second interesting this is, my view of bandwidth is like any other infrastructure. What do we have enough of? Nothing. you don’t have enough roads, we don’t have enough ports, we don’t have enough airports, we definitely don’t have enough airlines based on the ticket price. We don’t have enough food, we don’t have enough gas, we don’t have enough oil, and guess what -- we don’t have enough bandwidth. Despite all of this, as a country, we continue to consume enormous amounts of each of those. There’s no question about the appetite, right? Rajan No, my point is why is the internet got only 200 million users? And so, my view is, without broadband India has added 50 million users this year. They’re all on mobile devices, by the way. And they’re, just about all of them interestingly, are figuring out how to use video. So, without broadband, by end of 2015, India will surpass the US, in terms of connected users. Because, the thing is, once you figure something out, you will hang onto it till you can get it to an affordable level. 38% of Youtube videos in India, come from a mobile device. I keep asking my team- wow, really?! They’re like- yeah, it buffers and it’s ok. Because for the user, if they haven’t seen Plan A and Plan B is to them, pretty cool. So when will broadband happen, how will it happen, who will bring it, we don’t know. I think the telecom operators are all focused on getting it to happen. But look, in India, it will happen. It will take time, hopefully sooner rather than later. But the Indian consumer, interestingly, isn’t waiting. Which is why 50 million new Indians will get on the internet on narrow-band networks, with smartphones, and find their videos.
June 26, 2013 #001
Cannes Grand Prix winners
PRESS TBWA \ Media Arts Lab CAMPAIGN Wallpaper, Time, Wired, New Yorker CLIENT Apple iPad Mini
OUTDOOR Ogilvy S達o Paolo CAMPAIGN Real Beauty Sketches CLIENT Dove
MOBILE DDB DM9JAYMESFU Makrati City CAMPAIGN TXTBKS CLIENT Smart Communications
INTEGRATED, FILM, RADIO, PR & DIRECT McCann Melbourne CAMPAIGN Dumb Ways To Die Client Metro Trains
OUTDOOR Ogilvy France CAMPAIGN Bench, Shelter, Ramp CLIENT IBM
June 26, 2013 #001
Cannes Grand Prix
FILMCRAFT 4Creative London CAMPAIGN Meet The Superhumans Client Channel 4
MEDIA Ogilvy Amsterdam CAMPAIGN Why Wait Until It’s Too Late? Client Dela
MEDIA SERVICEPLAN Munich CAMPAIGN The Selfscan Report Client Auchan
CREATIVE EFFECTIVENESS Weiden + Kennedy Amsterdam CAMPAIGN Heineken’s Legendary Journey Client Heineken
INNOVATION The Barbarian Group CAMPAIGN Cinder
FILM, CYBER & BRANDED CONTENT Pereira & O’Dell CAMPAIGN The Beauty Inside Client Intel + Toshiba
not grand prix, but stuff we liked...
PROMO & ACTIVATION Ogilvy Brasil CAMPAIGN Immortal Fans Client Sport Club Recife
From L-R Lowe London for Lifebuoy’s ‘Help A Child Reach 5’ , Ogilvy India for Lifebuoy’s ‘Roti Reminder’ & Ramesh Deo Productions for Nike India’s ‘Parallel Journeys’
June 26, 2013 #001
back of the book The creative brief: keeping pace with the times
CodeConclave's Lakshmipathy Bhatt ruminates on briefs
‘What is the one thing we want to say?’ That question, or variations thereof (‘what is the single minded proposition?’) as part of the written Creative Brief, has baffled many an Account Executive in ad agencies. It may have been a source of mirth for many a Creative Director too, as they view such briefs as unfocused and uninspiring. The best of the creative folk usually have a clear understanding of the brand’s business problem and are able to figure out what needs to be ‘said’ and how it needs to be said. But the larger issue remains: is the ‘one thing we want to say’ relevant in the new media age? The industry has been talking about advertising having moved to a two-way dialogue with the consumer for a decade now. So is the inherently one-way ‘saying something’ still valid or is there a need to develop an industry standard ‘new media brief’? Even the current brief followed by most agencies has pretty much common elements: the business problem or opportunity the advertising must address, the target audience, the proposition, support and maybe a suggested idea or direction. In 2010, Gareth Key, Chief Strategy Officer & Associate Partner at Goodby, Silverstein & Partners talked about ‘The brief in the post digital age’. He spoke about some fundamental differences between the pre & post digital age. While the former was about interruption, saying things to people & changing perceptions the latter is about participation, doing things for people and affecting behaviour. He goes on to urge industry folks to start asking different questions about the project at hand largely aimed to evoking participation from consumers. I wonder how many of the agencies actually practice it nowadays but seems like a mighty sensible way to approach brand communication nowadays. Many of the successful campaigns of late, have followed some of these principles. P&G’s ‘Thank You, Mom’ campaign is a great example. Just a decade ago, the campaign might have just had a heart-tugging TV spot and that’s that. Today, P&G demonstrated that they understand what it means to be a marketer in the new media age. They did not just stop at mouthing platitudes through a TV commercial but did
something. They sponsored the trip of US athletes’ moms to the 2010 Winter Olympics. The sponsorship involved the cost of travel and accommodations, setting up Procter & Gamble ‘Family Home’ and a meeting place for athletes and families to watch the events. The campaign subtly brought in the role of P&G brands too: a Pampers spot, for example, noted that “before they [American athletes] were wearing Gold, Silver or Bronze, they were wearing diapers… Thank you, Mom.” The campaign paid rich dividends: 50,000 tweets about the work, 400,000 new Facebook friends, and an estimated $130 million in incremental sales of P&G products. The initiative was taken forward to the 2012 London Olympics too resulting in even greater global coverage. All of this was based on classic, timeless advertising principles (or shall we say, pre-digital): a great insight (celebrate that special person in the lives of Team USA athletes who supports their child selflessly to help them succeed), a simple idea (‘to their moms they will always be kids’) and a creative expression that was suited for digital media & its various platforms: ‘Thank you, mom’. I think the last bit, creating a property that is conducive for digital media & its platforms is critical - the idea must be suitable for participation from consumers via tweets, Facebook posts, blogs, video uploads and so on. And that’s where the successful campaigns of late have scored. Our very own, ‘Women against lazy stubble’ also comes to mind as a campaign that best utilizes the digital age. Many of the winners at the Cannes Lions, 2013 have also been about doing good. And that act of doing something, gets the buzz going (voluntarily at times) for the brand. A mobile app, which utilized dated event apps in order to drive home the point about organ donation, is one such idea that went beyond traditional advertising. Some of them have potential for global impact as this first-timer at Cannes, notes: The Potable Water Generator created by Media Connection BPN for the Universite of Engineering and Technology in Lima demonstrates how engineering can change the world - a
billboard that produces drinking water out of air. Or the simply brilliant Mobile Lions Grand Prize winner DDB DM9JAYMESYFU for Smart Communications in the Phillipines, which puts school textbooks into analogue mobile phones. The kind of questions we need to ask when writing briefs could be on these lines: What can we do so that people talk about the brand? Maybe taking a leaf out of the classic Direct Marketing briefs (more specifically direct mail briefs) may help. They were always about that specific offer that is most likely to evoke a response - a price off, a free gift and so on. Similarly, can the brand do something specific that evokes a reaction & participation from relevant consumers? This is not to say that a 30-second spot or apromo spot should be done away with - it is about the larger context of engaging with the consumer to gain preference and involvement. How can we be of value at the personal digital spaces of our consumers? This, I think, would be the clincher. Of late, a Facebook brand page (with emphasis on number of ‘likes’) has become de rigueur for brands. Almost all the brand pages have a cookie-cutter approach geared to garner likes & shares. It is amusing to find a diverse set of brands (cars, soap, deodorants, telecom...you name it) creating virtually the same kind of Facebook posts - it could be about Rahul Dravid playing a great innings - as far removed from the brand as possible. In this context, see what Cravendale milk (as mundane a category as possible) did with their Facebook page. They created a page out of one of the characters from the advertising, Bertram Thumbcat. With or without a new kind of brief, some agencies (notably ones that don’t have a specialist digital division) have produced some cracking new media stuff. W+K and their work for Old Spice, Nike and P&G come to mind. Surely there’s a lot to learn from them interms of keeping pace with the times. Will our creative briefs do too? @bhatnaturally is a failed MBBS applicant, a Zoology graduate, ex-photocopier salesman, occasional blogger and a student of advertising & new media.
Too much to do and too little time at Cannes
StrawberryFrog Amsterdam's Patrick Garvey's Cannes Diary
So it's the end of the 60th Cannes Lions Awards, and I'm very, very tired. Each time I leave I wonder if the next year I won't be so shattered and if I'll ever get the balance right between client meetings, reconnecting, networking, and celebration. Last week I read our Chairman and Founder Scott Goodson's article "Does the Cannes Festival of Creativity Matter?" which raised some strong POV's as to the perceived pros and cons of this annual event. I've decided to steer well clear of this well trodden debate, and focus on the mood, the people I met, the work, and what caught my attention. I was here with StrawberryFrogs from across the globe: Frances from SFNY, Bindu from Amsterdam and Raj Kamble from SF Mumbai. Let's start with why we are all definitely, 100%, categorically, scout's honour, I promise, there. The work. Of course the "Dumb Ways to Die" Campaign was expected to do very well and it didn't disappoint picking up the main awards. That's the second year in a row that an animation has picked up the Grand Prix. "The Beauty Inside" by Intel did very well picking up Film Lion Golds, and Branded Content Gold. It's is a great example of a brand embracing not only digital as a primary vehicle to deliver big ideas, but also it's an example of a brand understanding the power of aligning its product with real human values, and using great creative storytelling to create a powerful movement.
Porn room at M&C Saatchi Cannes party
“Porn room” at M&C Saatchi Cannes party Last night's M&C Saatchi party at Villa Michel in Cannes had a naughty basement area showing French soft porn on a loop. The room was adorned with purple lanterns and played footage from soft porn series Emmanuelle for guests who ventured downstairs. http://www.campaignatcannes.com
Being British I was also especially drawn to creative work that made me want to relive the experience of the London Olympics. In 2012 I'd seen some Paralympic work for Samsung that I was greatly impressed with, but at Cannes I was exposed to the Channel 4 spot "Meet the Superheores" which raised the bar even further. It definitely tapped into the idea on the rise that the Paralympics isn't second to the Olympics, but a wonderful sporting event in it's own right. It was delivered it in a way that not only established pride, but delivered genuine sporting excitement. Great stuff. And I guess that's the beauty of Cannes. You are genuinely exposed to fantastic and inspiring creative work from other markets that would have passed you by solely because it didn't go viral on YouTube. 1-0 Cannes. Outside of the work, the mood of the event itself was as high as ever. Previously, clients of mine had asked why the festival needed to take place in the South of France. The answer is simple. Cannes has this type of event cracked. It's location, hotels, restaurants and bars allow people to meet and mingle in style. How does that not put a smile on your face? So who did I meet whilst drinking overpriced rosé? Whilst it was invaluable meeting with our existing clients, strengthening relationships,and talking about the future, exciting discussions with potential new clients pop up frequently and a quick introduction can lead to some extremely interesting opportunities.
What really inspired me this year were the wide range of potential partners I met. Wesley Ter Har, co-founder MediaMonks, blew my mind with their digital production excellence. They have been clearing up at awards ceremonies recently so are obviously doing something right. I met with leading PR communications experts who had some extremely interesting points on the changing face of the creative agency landscape. I met with Rich Pierson, co-founder of Headspace, who challenged me with his ideas for one of our clients that would elevate them above their competitors, and hopefully force the category to react. At StrawberryFrog we must stay ahead of the curve so that we can create world class Cultural Movements for our clients. Taking inspiration from experts in their respective fields is something we take a great deal of pride in. And that's what Cannes is all about. It isn't just wining and dining for the sake of it. It's about making the most of the opportunities that present themselves to you, soaking up the wisdom of others, and continually trying to seek improvement wherever you can get them. Going back to my original question of whether I'll ever get the balance of Cannes right. The answer is a resounding no. There's far too much to do in too little time. So whilst I am happy to be back home after and extremely tiring week, I'm already planning next years trip. Please get in touch and let's meet up. firstname.lastname@example.org
Paddy Power welcomes The Special One Imagine an ad like this released in India. The nation would be up in flames and perhaps a government would have fallen