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Cannes Lions 2016: Sonal Dabral discusses future of video ads live on Periscope

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Cannes Lions 2016: Sonal Dabral discusses future of video ads live on Periscope

Sonal Dabral, Chairman and Chief Creative Officer of DDB Mudra Group, had a live discussion on advertising, Cannes Lions and life in general on Periscope with Steve Kalifowitz, Twitter’s head of brand strategy and advocacy for APAC and MENA, from the Live Studio at the Twitter beach at Cannes on Wednesday.

“Once I was sitting at Kolkata airport and my flight got delayed by two or three hours. I was sitting all alone at the restaurant and wondering how I could while away my time... I was not carrying a book and I did not want to check e-mail for so long... then this random thought hit me that my followers on Twitter keep asking me questions on advertising and marketing, and why don’t I communicate with them. So I sent out a tweet saying that I was sitting at the Kolkata airport and my flight had been delayed by a couple of hours, and for people to ask me if they have any questions... one after the other the questions kept coming... about my old work, about my thinking, etc, etc... I was just recounting this to Steve the other day and he suggested that we do a Q&A session live on Periscope. I thought it was a brilliant idea, and today it was an amazing experience,” says Dabral, who went live on Periscope at 3 pm India time from Twitter’s Live Studio at Cannes.

“The whole immediacy of it all struck me. Earlier live transmissions would be on TV, there would be a set-up. Now people are watching it on their mobile phone, on an app... the possibilities it throws up are mind-boggling. To be part of that experience right now, that too at the place which is the mecca of creativity, with my friend Steve asking me great questions... it was an amazing experience. The kind of conversation it was, it could have gone on and on and on... unfortunately we had only 30 minutes, and time just flew. The topics we covered were varied in terms of how technology and creativity and data are all coming together to open up absolutely amazing possibilities for us to come up with great creative solutions. We also spoke of a few examples that I liked and how those are not restricted to traditional boundaries of advertising. For example, to sell a beer, somebody set up a petrol pump, or rather brewed petroleum and sold Brewtroleum...and Intermarche’s detox message with beautiful packaging design... the DDB Sydney’s work with Instagram... the moment somebody posted a photograph, which was geo-tagged, the team inside could immediately respond with a ‘Come Inside Sydney Opera House’ message, as statistics showed only 1% of visitors who shoot Sydney Opera House from outside actually go inside. These experiences tell you about the possibilities that are there for you to expand your mind and think outside your comfort zone,” he adds.

Talking about the conversation with Dabral on Periscope, Steve Kalifowitz, Twitter’s head of brand strategy and advocacy for APAC and MENA, says, “The conversation was fantastic. It was on why people come to Cannes, creativity and the possibilities thrown up by technology... At Twitter, we have tons of meetings with clients and agencies and other technology partners to talk about what’s going on and some of them actually hold back new releases to make news here...what happens here are these impromptu discussions, the most value that I get from Cannes every year... sit down with someone you respect and admire and just talk for 30 minutes... there is so much to inspire you here... it’s not just looking at great work. The conversation with Sonal touched upon so many things... from diet (we both have cut out sugar) to what we are eating today, being inspired by the rate of change. Last year, we both were at the Palais des Festivals looking at a VR installation. It wasn’t even work that was being awarded... but things to come in the future. A year later, there is a whole category of awards for VR and the work is amazing. Things are moving really fast and here we are reminded that we are not restricted to the traditional ways of advertising and realize the immense possibilities that these advances throw up. Today there were some great questions – some we answered, some we didn’t for lack of time. There was a question on briefs, and what’s a good brief, and queries about video on Twitter, on mute video expanding or limiting creativity, and so on.”

Watch the Periscope broadcast here:

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