The night when the terror attacked, November 26 2006 was the evening where the adland had been celebrating Effies Award 2008. Many of the agencies who won metals had been rejoicing that evening. One would have never predicted about the mishap that hit the city of Mumbai till the current situation of mayhem created concern not only across India but also globally.
However, the next day most of the corporate offices bounced back and many resumed work. Speaking of advertising fraternity, neither did many of agencies dithered to work the next day. Agencies like Ogilvy India had already resumed work from November 27, 2008.
Nonethless, many of the agencies have definitely felt the pinch and anticipate if the time comes, they shall plan for a social marketing initiative against the terrorism. exchange4media.com speaks to some of the agency heads in regards to their views.
However, when contacted R Balki, Chairman & Chief Creative Officer, Lowe Lintas declined to comment on the incident however confirmed that the agency is back to the grind and has resumed work hence forth.
As for Piyush Pandey, Executive Chairman, NCD, O&M India & Vice Chairman O&M Asia Pacific not dithering the lively spirit at Ogilvy, Pandey explained, “We have been working right through the day of Mumbai Siege. But for those who could not make to work due to the terror strike, there was no compulsion of reporting. But for those who could make it, the agency doors were open.”
As for the social marketing initiative plans Pandey explained that at the agency nothing yet been decided about any such initiative, but if needs to be done, the agency would never give a second thought but grab that moment with the involvement and confirmations of everybody involved from the government, bureaucrats to the people of the society.
On similar lines, Mahesh Chauhan, Group CEO, Rediffusion Y&R, explained that the incident left everybody numb. He said, “Personally I am wishing and hoping that the fume of rage that has occurred amongst many needs to be channelled into a finite action giving a fact that this incident is not repeated.”
Taking forward this thought process; he anticipates that they are definitely ideating on the concern. He explained, “As advertising fraternity and understanding the power of communication, we will definitely take the responsibility against the issues when it’s the right time.”
While speaking business, Nakul Chopra, CEO, Publicis South Asia explained, “Mumbai has been witnessed with such incidents quiet often in the past few years however, this one definitely has shaken up the whole of the nation. But what has been amazing is the incredible spirit of the people of how they bounce back. Hence I state it is life and it thus does go on. However, this incident has on a very large affected the business of different segments like the travel and tourism or Hotels and even for advertising. The latest being advertising revenue generator loosing out on India-England last two ODI’s and the postponement of Champion League.”
Madhukar Kamath, MD and CEO, Mudra Group informed that Mudra was operational from Friday and from December 1, 2008 the agency have thoroughly resumed work
However on the plans of any social marketing initiative, Kamath cited, “It is not the questions of an agency planning. It is the time for every individual to take notice and be a part of any movement that occur. Anybody requires services for any kind of activity linked to any social movement, we are always ready.”
On the other hand for KV Sridhar, NCD Leo Burnett who is better known as ‘Pops’, the mood is still not set at Leo Burnett as the creative officials job demands to use their heads which has been emotionally and mentally affected due to the mayhem. He said, “We have requested our clients to be patient with us as the scene is emotionally involved. We have requested most of our clients to post pond the meeting for another two-three days.”
According to Pops advertising is all about to do something that influence the people. Creativity has the power to change the human behaviour and when the time arises, will definitely exhibit the power.