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JWT shifts focus to regain creative excellence and get back to winning awards

16-May-2005
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JWT shifts focus to regain creative excellence and get back to winning awards

JWT has decided to focus on the ABC of advertising -- Awards, Business and Creativity. Having lost the No. 1 spot to O&M, the long-time heavyweight of Indian advertising has reworked its focus to regain its pre-eminence in creative excellence.

The Delhi branch of JWT has incorporated a lot of restructuring so that the agency gets back to full swing. To begin with, a 'health check' is being done on all brands that it works on so to get a fix on their performance. Secondly, the agency is evaluating the creativity on a scale of 10.

"We are classifying on one sheet our relations with clients, work, quality of people and financial performance across brands. Following this, we are denoting a colour to evaluate where we stand. For instance, a red notation would call for immediate attention, amber would signify mediocre performance, and green would mean good work. The idea is to drive towards the green," said Rohit Ohri, General Manager and Branch Head, JWT Delhi.

Creativity is the key focus for JWT this year and the agency is striving to meet world standards. Ohri emphasised that JWT is "in a race against time, and time is the new currency" the agency is investing on. "We are striving for the 31st second with the viewer. Thirty seconds is what you have bought and that one second is the time you are buying from the consumer. If you succeed in winning that one additional second, you have won the battle," he said.

Ohri elaborated that with this objective in mind, the agency has evolved a new way to evaluate creativity on a 10-point scale. And this is how it goes from 1 to 10: damaging, wasteful, boring, predictable, competent, rewarding, innovative, market leading, world class and world beating.

Asked how 'Oye Bubbly' rates on this scorecard, Ohri very critically ranked it at No. 6! He reasoned, "Oye Bubbly has been extremely rewarding. The last we heard was that seven lakh people have downloaded the Bubbly ring tone. When people first saw the Oye Bubbly ad, they were shocked; it was the element of disruption that worked. Ultimately, it lasted that one additional second."

However, Ohri believes that JWT can't be complacent about the Bubbly success. "To be No. 10 it has to be clearly world beating," he stressed.

So, what is more important for JWT -- winning awards or winning pitches? "Winning awards," said Ohri promptly, adding in the same breath, "Business will follow." He said that the agency was henceforth going to be more focused while sending nominations for awards. "We never chased awards, we chased business and concentrated on market building initiatives. However, if the name of the game is winning awards, we will be winning this game too," he said.

Asked if the agency is planning to introduce VRS, Ohri denied this saying, "There is no such plan. However, to meet excellence, the warm and tolerant JWT is going to transform itself into a leaner and meaner organisation."

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