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Guest Column:Why we rarely walk on the edge?: Sanjeev Kotnala

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Guest Column:Why we rarely walk on the edge?: Sanjeev Kotnala

The year 2015 in advertising communications has seen some tectonic movements, which was much appreciated as it resulted in the return of quality after the industry underwent a spell of mediocre campaigns.

The above is primarily true about AV (TV or Internet), the forefront of Indian traditional and new media. Print lagged behind with hardly any specific innovation or creativity worth a salute. Radio remained sporadic in its creativity and it is more visible in creative programming and audience engagement.
OOH showed rare promises and has lagged behind in adapting to technology. The Internet still remains a somewhat over- hyped media in the Indian environment.
I know I will be smouldered under the standard culture, audience life stage and sensitivity issues. How far can you move in such a religiously, geographically, gender polarised country? A secular country where BAN, REVOLT and INTOLERANCE maybe better understood by the citizen than freedom of expression.  Well, if this constraint was to be considered we are fairly doing well with many acts of bravery.
Some of the brands that walked their talk and took the step forward include- P&G’s ‘Touch the pickle’, Star Sports- ‘Mauka Mauka’,’ Dabur Vatika’, Radio Mirchi- ‘Rudali’,, Anouk and  Myntra- ‘Pregnancy’. Somewhat softened but still making waves were, Ariel- ‘Share the load’, Brooke Bond- ‘Swaad Apnepan ka’, Ambuja- ‘Khali’, Truly Madly- ‘bye bye creep’, Frooti- New packaging and Nutralite- ‘Health Ganesha’.

However, compared to our roundup this year, some of the international work would have made one proud to be associated with.  Unlike us, festivals like X-mas and New year seems to be season of liberty and going that extra mile. Here are few pieces of International work I would like to share with you.

Keep walking. Brotherly Love- death – care and liquor. Something we don’t think we will see.

Here is something of incestual love- good if you had kept meeting the family


A somewhat familiar territory in this case



Or just playing around- this time with a sexy SANTA that even adults may want to sit on

And another with viewer discretion:

Before you think that edgy means just sexual over tones, I will make you think of 2016 Pirelli calendar

And then connect you with the home coming TVC, a subject that we have seen  leveraged in Indian situations, but something stops us taking it so far.


Or if nothing else, be happy within ourselves. Look at skipable wishes by Publicis Groupe

And then this DDB Drunk History


We remain so touchy and well quite sensitive to all objections that we have chained ourselves in traditionally. We are making small tentative pokes with our audience to check the limit. Not realising that they have really moved forward in life.

To the future of more UNSAFE- EDGE and EXPERIMENTAL advertising in 2016.

The author is Sanjeev Kotnala Head catalyst, INTRADIA

Our typical marketing budget is usually 10 per cent of the topline spend

There are some forces impacting the way our business works. The IT/ITeS sector has changed tremendously. Platforms like Twitter have made everyone journalists. Smartphones have made everyone a photographer. The trend that we are seeing is one of hyperdigitalization, which is causing the lines between product and services to blur. For example, <a href=

The OOH sector is among the fastest growing, globally. Brands and marketers have realized its potential and impact and begun to craft medium-specific adverts. Self-regulation is not only necessary but also essential to growth of the sector. The industry needs to exercise a certain level of this self-restraint to prove its commitment to maintaining the best standards in advertising.

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