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Consumers looking for experiences in ads: R/GA’s Barry Wacksman

Barry Wacksman emphasises the need for the advertisers to look beyond content for making brands

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GOA: While most marketers are busy improving their creative and storytelling skills, R/GA vice chairman and global chief strategy officer Barry Wacksman believes that they should be focusing on more than just content. Speaking to Indiantelevision.com on the second day of Goafest 2019, Wacksman noted that audiences today are looking for experiences and not just stories from ads.

He said, “The starting point of what a client needs or what their briefs are would lead you to different creative parts. I think the advertising industry always sees the brief as an opportunity to create content. Yes, that content is sometimes successful but I think we should start thinking in terms of disruption. In today’s technologically advanced world, a piece of content will not solve the problem for the client as audiences are looking for newer and better experiences.”

Citing his company’s Galaxy Skin (for a virtual game) campaign for Samsung Note series, Wacksman highlighted that advertisers should try and incorporate newer brand experiences or products in their marketing activities.

He also shed light on the traditional v/s new media debate during the course of interaction. Stating that consolidation is the way ahead for marketers to grow, Wacksman emphasised on the need for an agency being self-sufficient in the form of capabilities to run both traditional and data/technology-driven campaigns for a brand.

Wacksman also refuted the possibility of traditional media going obsolete in India. He said, “I still think that there is going to be a massive [traditional] media business. It might be because some digital platforms like OTT players might get off from the AVOD mode and make a shift to a subscription-based model. While social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram are growing, it is very hard to build brands on these. It is easier to do direct marketing or targeted marketing, but it is difficult to create aesthetic content that drives emotions. Brands are yet to figure out a lot of things on social media.”

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