In many ways, isolation has brought the agency closer: Ranjit Raina, Geometry Encompass

In today's edition of e4m Creative Zone, we speak to Ranjit Raina, CEO, Geometry Encompass on working on a virtual engagement for the first time, fostering creativity remotely and more

e4m by Misbaah Mansuri
Updated: Aug 12, 2020 8:22 AM
e4m Creative Zone, Ranjit Raina, CEO, Geometry Encompass

The COVID-19 global lockdown has not just confined us to our homes but thrown at us challenges of various dimensions. From the ad industry’s perspective, organising and shooting an advertising campaign in these conditions proved to be the big test. However, despite these challenges, our creative leaders have continued to conceptualise work that inspires. In our new series – e4m Creative Zone, we get to know how Creative heads have been surpassing the COVID hurdles.

In today's edition of e4m Creative Zone, we have Ranjit Raina, CEO, Geometry Encompass. Raina started his career in the media as a television producer and director and has produced 200 hours of award-winning television series. In the mid-90s a chance meeting with Roshan Abbas led his foray into experiential marketing. He then quit to start his own venture. He then returned to Encompass in 2004 as COO and was actively involved with the WPP acquisition and worked with brands like GSK, Pepsi, Nokia, Mercedes Benz, among others. In conversation with exchange4media, Raina opens up on working on a virtual engagement for the very first time as an experiential agency, fostering creativity remotely and more 

Edited excerpts below:

How has lockdown changed life for agencies like yours?

We have had to reimagine work and how we work. Remote working has its own challenges, working around them and learning how to work around them. Learning from other agency heads – from other geometry offices across the world, in many ways the world shrunk.

Take us through any campaign done by the agency during the lockdown and how did it all come together?

We have worked on quite a few different campaigns during the lockdown. The Spirit of HP was a live digital experience project that we did for HP and their internal stakeholders early in the lockdown. The creative and planning team was working on virtual engagement for the very first time and it was a great learning experience – because the challenge was to keep people engaged and have them participate in the virtual event and not just be present on the other side of the screen. The Mondelez acknowledgement of the retail field force with a film made during the lockdown was very special and most recently we created a Guinness World Record for Nivea. All these projects were planned and executed during the lockdown – with the entire team – business, account management, creative, planning and operations working remotely. In many instances, the teams had people across Delhi and Mumbai participating in the projects.

How have your clients responded to the situation? Are clients ready to spend now or are still tightening their purse-strings? What is the general mood like?

Most people are still watching the situation, everyone is erring on the side of being cautious. We still don’t have complete visibility on how long this will last, but with every passing day it is clear that we need to be agile and plan for a world that is going to be quite unlike what we were imaging. The need to connect is more important now, more than ever. Brands and clients are also exploring new ways and means to connect.

The crisis has brought in a great deal of upheaval in the way agencies are working now. Where do you see the silver lining or the green shots of opportunity in all this?

In many ways the isolation has brought the agency closer. People across offices are working much closer, there is a sense of cohesion , also across the network, I feel people are working much closer.

Your message to brands and agencies on creating work that can cut through the clutter rather than being it? 

The basics haven’t changed – for all the uncertainty and all the upheaval and all the change. The only way to cut through the clutter is creating work that connects with people.

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