WPP owned world’s largest market implementation agency, Hogarth Worldwide recently announced the launch of its operations in India. We spoke to Barry Jones, Founder & Chairman of Hogarth to get an insight into what Hogarth has in mind for India.
Hogarth’s advertising production technology infrastructure presents vast opportunities for Indian brand marketers to gain swifter access to the agency’s unique offerings spanning advertising production across all media, propriety technology solutions, trans-creation and language services.
Elaborating on it Jones said, “India is a very important market. We tend to respond to where our clients want us to be and India is too big for some clients to include within global implementation and is too small and complicated for some clients. You’d be surprised with the number of MNCs that handle India as a one off and that really helps in our kind of footprint and it is about time we decided to take India seriously.”
In a multi-diversity country like India, brands are increasingly recognizing the need for synchronicity of marketing campaigns, covering the entire range of advertising and communications making it relevant across markets – and the entry of Hogarth in India aptly addresses the demand of the growing domestic market.
“China likes to think of itself as world within a world, then certainly in India you’ve got a continent. It has people with different attitudes, tastes and culture and I think there is a lot of complexity here. It is a fast moving market with a lot of changes happening rapidly,” said Jones on what differentiates Indian market from others.
When asked about Hogarth and its role, he elucidated, “Hogarth built the wave of centralised implementation where major multinational agencies, advertisers and marketers decided that it was more efficient to centrally implement their campaigns rather than implementing them through a networking structure. There are substantial savings there and it increases their central control but decreased the local variability. To a lot of advertisers it was almost a hidden blessing as variability was a problem.”
What Hogarth typically does is to find new ways of doing things which are fundamentally different and can offer substantial savings and at the same time improve the quality. “We are not interested in simply reducing the rate card on something; we are interested in doing it fundamentally differently and as a result you get substantial savings. Centralised implementation was a substantial saving over network implementation. We tend to be very international, in terms of picking up work in one country and do it halfway around the world in a different country and that whole thing is seamless; because if we are experts at anything, it is working over very large distances,” added Jones.
Sharing his take on digital media and Hogarth’s success in the same, Jones explains, “Success for us is in doing it faster, cheaper and more accurately and not necessarily doing anything with the creative content. In some cases we do the creatives too, build a CHI and also build a website and then localise it for a particular market. The reason we can do all of this is because we use different technologies, and one of them being a technology we built for ourselves with Microsoft. It is called I AM (Intelligent Agile Marketing) and it uses the cloud to make it easier and quicker to build, host and manage websites.”
Speaking about how much digital media has impacted the advertising industry, he said, “It is huge and hasn’t been fully digested yet. The way someone on the web is interacting with a brand and communicating is entirely different from how they would respond to a television ad, and the major marketers are still trying to work out how to handle these different communications that have such different characters. For instance, you can have a personalised communication which is about something you are passionate about and aware about delivered to you, as opposed to television which has interruptive communication about a detergent when you’re thinking of dinner. Also, how you handle social media and video assets on social media are a bit haphazard and different from the communication discipline that you have for television. It is deceptively similar but fundamentally different.”