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Partnerships - Key for better advertising: AAAI seminar

MUMBAI: Post all the view points of differt sector, this session marked the agency's response to the earlier thoughts that were shared and the adverting opinion on the same. The panel entailed O&M executive chairman & NCD Piyush Pandey, Mudra Group MD & CEO Madhukar Kamat and Satchi & Satchi MD & CEO V Shantakumar.

 

 

Kickstarting the rebuttal was SKA Advisors Sunil Alagh who started off saying that the advertising agencies today are struggling to find the right insight for various campaigns. "Beg the best to join you, borrow when you can have competitiveness (Outsourcing) and steal if you better an idea and make it yours." Citing the example of Sony who came up with the walkman concept, it was Apple's iPod that has stolen the idea making the idea revolutionary and a rage. Alagh said that partnerships between advertising agencies and clients no more existed and agencies were treated like vendors and not creative partners.

 

 

Pandey said, " Eighty five - Ninety per cent of ads that hit the tube are crap anyway. In this over excitement of technology and emerging mediums, we seem to have forgotten our basics." Good advertising will come only if good partnerships are made and agencies are not treaded as vendors."

 

 

Kamat pointed out that that with fundamental changes happening, media fragmentation on the upswing, true integration and talent was required to churn out top advertising. He stressed on the relevance of content and that mutual respect between both the agency and the client was vital and not the procurement evil. "Purchase departments have been now given the responsibility for calling for pitches."

Shantaram said that ad agencies are still too focussed on what to say than what to do. "We are currently focussed on the content and not the context. We need to change our approach and redefine ourselves and form relationships. Our advertising need to affect transformation and bring in incremental change."

The challenges that were pointed out were that agencies were being treated as suppliers and not strategists. The need for the hour was most definitely said to be raise the level of confidence agencies currently command with clients.

The AAAI Diamond Jubilee seminar 'Beyond the Horizon' culminated with Lintas India chairman & MD Prem Mehta giving the valedictory address, the recipient of the AAAI Premnarayan Award last year.

Mehta summed up the day highlighting the key issues addressed through the day. The need to build partnerships, remuneration cuts and the need for agencies to invest in themselves were thoughts that Mehta shared. The good news Mehta pointed out was the fact that racing fragmentation was accompanied with the phenomenon of an evolving consumer - both socially and economically.

He added, "Marketing has come of age, but the Indian industry is such that it has not seen the luxury of evolution. Aspects like pricing are becoming deciding factors. On the overall scene, this has led to the reduced ability to invest long term, which is a cause of concern."

He urged the gathering to introspect and inch towards integrated communications outfits and move beyond the agency -client divide and embrace each other to produce a more fruitful outcome.

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