‘Bigger and Better’ is what GoaFest 2011 promises to be this time. With a lot of freshness added to it, the advertising festival plans to raise the bar way above all.
As is known, this year, GoaFest is being extended to five days than the usual three days, while the venue has been changed from the beach to Zuri White Sands 5 Star resort in Varca, South Goa, and then, there is the association with the Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI).
Another added feature this year is the Festival of Media, Montreux, which will specially host two of its categories – ‘Best Communication Strategy’ and ‘Best Contribution by a Media Owner’. The winner and runners-up of these categories will be fast-tracked into the Festival of Media finals.
exchange4media speaks to the industry young turks to gauge their reactions to these new additions as well as their expectations this year…
Thumbs up or thumbs down?
Expressing his views, Nilesh Vaidya, ECD, Euro RSCG India, wondered, “Is more always better? We’ll just have to wait and watch.” He further said, “The change of venue is good news, the name suggests air-conditioning! And I like the idea of people attending workshops on ‘creativity with a conscience’ when they’re sloshed out of their minds and wondering who to hit on next. Poetic justice! I think most people will just attend the last three days, it’s tough taking the whole week off. But I hope I’m wrong, we really need that conscience.”
Optimistic and excited about the association with ASCI, Rajshekar Patil, Brand Partner, BBH India, commented, “Creative people are always excited about anything shiny and new. So predictably, I’m excited about a new version of the GoaFest. The two-day ASCI workshop on responsible advertising is a first, and couldn’t have come at a better time. So I’m hoping to regain my sunburn over five days and along with it, my faith in the judging process.”
For Amod Dani, Creative Director, Leo Burnett India, it’s the ‘more’ factor that is the biggest pull. He said, “Five days of GoaFest = five days of ‘More’. More sun, so more sun tan. More confusion (Where exactly is this Zuri White Sands Resort?). More ideas? Ok… more ideas! More kings. More ‘Hey bro, long time, so are you still with….?’ More seminars… Sigh! More kings please! More prawn, poppadums. Yum! More controversies? Hope not. More awards? Fingers crossed. And post that, yes, you guessed it, more kings. Looking forward to a lot more fun!”
Media professionals are no less excited, what with the introduction of two new categories and with the presence of Festival of Media, Monteux. There is definitely a flow of excitement for the Media Abbys too.
Shailesh Velandy, Vice President, Mudra Max, remarked, “It comes as a surprise that the ‘Best Communication Strategy’ was not a part of our award categories so far. The second category introduced, ‘Best Contribution to a Campaign’, too is a great and welcome addition as media contributions are made with the help of media owners, but the due credit is never given.”
He felt that five days was a bit too long for the event and added, “The venue change does not really matter as the destination is still Goa, and as long as the spirit of the festival is maintained through the event, the changes are positive.”
Himanka Das, Vice President, Karishma Initiative, said, “So far I haven’t been to GoaFest though we won metals in the past. But in previous years when somebody told me about GoaFest, it transpired in my mind as advertising and marketing professionals’ party by the Goa beaches. But this year, the modules are well defined and quite innovative. With impressive topics and speakers, it will bring significant credibility amongst award functions in the region, as we truly contribute globally in the business of communication and media. It will be interesting to see the creative talents showcasing and getting rewarded on the spot.”
Manoj Malkani, Vice President, MPG India, too, felt that five days was a considerably long time and agencies couldn’t afford such a loss of time as they worked on stringent deadlines. He, however, added, “On the other hand, it can be treated as a short holiday rather than conducting an event and could be an occasion to have an annual meet. The award categories introduced by Festival of Media are interesting as most people speak on implementation of strategy rather than communication. It will bring in more information on client happenings and help give better yields.”
Saurabh Tyagi, Account Director, Starcom Worldwide, remarked, “It is good to see that more attention is being given to the media side and the alliance with an international event adds further creditability to the festival. I am unsure if extending the festival to five days is too long and if people will be able to take out the time, but the awards categories introduced is a welcome and a positive development.”
Whatever be the case, the industry is definitely looking forward to the new changes this year. And what better than Goa to have fun mixed with work. It’s Goa calling coming soon…
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