Why Mindshare won ‘Innovative Agency of the Year’ at Media Ace Awards

We delve into the numerous reasons that set Mindshare apart from competition when it comes to innovation, from creating new breakthroughs for clients as well as creating a work culture that breeds innovation

e4m by exchange4media Staff
Updated: Jul 29, 2015 9:16 AM
Why Mindshare won ‘Innovative Agency of the Year’ at Media Ace Awards

Mindshare bagged five awards at the recently held exchange4media Group’s Media Ace Awards, including the Surewaves Innovative Agency of the Year award.

Commenting on the multiple wins, Prasanth Kumar, CEO, South Asia, Mindshare said, “It’s been a great evening for the whole Mindshare family, especially because, out of the ten categories, we have managed to be represented in almost all and have won in many of them, especially the most coveted, Innovative Agency of the Year. Mindshare has been there for the past 12 years and the recognition that we have got is a privilege for us since innovation is at the centre of everything we do, every single day.”

The Innovative Agency of the Year was selected by a jury panel of industry stalwarts after an extensive review.

Innovations that set Mindshare apart…

Mindshare turned the popular TV show for kids – Chota Bheem - into a complete advertisement for Kellogg’s Chocos by integrating the character – Coco – into the show. For the Welcome to Kissanpur program, they distributed 2.5 million tomato seeds to school children to help them grow their own tomato plants.

As part of their work for the Indian Super League, they converted a subway into a virtual football field. In another sports related account, the agency hijacked the FIFA World Cup from Adidas (the official sponsors) for Nike (client) by creating augmented reality zones for fans where they could virtually model their favourite footballer’s jersey.

In a move that gained a lot of attention Mindshare spun a three second brand mention for Crocin in Arvind Kejriwal’s swearing in ceremony into media mentions worth Rs 3.25 crore across multiple media.

On the Internet front, they created the world’s first ever five-second commercial for Horlicks, specifically to drive the message home among YouTube viewers before they could press ‘Skip’.

All the innovations have been driven by the twin pillars of Mindshare’s approach to innovation: the Original Thinking Framework and the Loop Room.  The OTF is less a toolkit and more an agency philosophy, placing consumer centric originality at the heart of everything they do.

The Loop Room is their real time ‘war room’ bringing together Paid, Owned, Earned and Contextual data streams to enable silo-breaking decision making across media.

New Business Wins

Mindshare’s list of business wins this past year include, Apollo Health and Lifestyle, Adlabs Imagica, Diageo India, Dinamalar, Taxiforsure (Serendipity Infolabs), Yakult Danone, Intergrow Foods and Beverages, Nandan Saha Steel, Elgi Ultra Industries, Indian Terrain, CESC Properties, Repco Home Finance, Eros International, Saavn, Novi digital Entertainment (Star India), Practo Technologies, Synthite Industries, NAC Jewellers, DIPP – Make in India, Bajaj Auto and

They also enjoyed organic growth via existing clients, increasing their ratio of value added services (beyond traditional media commission and fees) from 23 per cent a year ago to 30 per cent in 2014-15.

Retaining talent a key focus area for Mindshare

Routine, boredom and a desire to seek out new challenges are some of the key causes of senior level attrition according to the agency. They use this to explain why there was no change in the Top 50 people of the media agency during this period.

Whatever attrition they did suffer, they say was largely on account of other agencies (and some clients) poaching entry and mid-level talent.

Their belief that innovation begins in digital, led to the creation of a bespoke i-Learn digital e-learning program, in collaboration with key partners like Google and Facebook.

Every employee, from Executive to Executive Committee Member went through this, leading to significant skill upgrade across the board that reinforced digital as the core of the new Mindshare. This was followed by Twitter Flight School, another pan-agency program.

With access to WPP/GroupM ‘Aspire’ training, any employee of the agency can avail of the bouquet of training modules (including core business skills, soft skills, finance for non-finance-professionals and coaching programs for would-be leaders). Over 1600 man-hours of training have been administered in total in the year.

The media agency’s culture and employee satisfaction survey is conducted annually to gauge team morale and identify areas of improvement and innovation.

High-quality recruits from within the WPP ecosystem are strengthening their key focus areas; Vinod Thadani, erstwhile CEO of Madhouse India was appointed Chief Digital Officer with a primary goal of driving innovation in digital. He now leads a fully refurbished team, including new hires as regional digital heads for South, North and West regions.

Blue chip clients…

Mindshare handles a blue chip roster of clients. Many of these relationships have been fostered over an extended number of years, often decades.

Their intense focus on being future ready; on being quick, nimble and innovative have played a huge role in retaining almost all key clients.

Some of their long term clients include Unilever (20 years), Berger Paints (16 years), Ford (16 years), Godrej (14 years), GSK (14 years), ICICI (14 years), Kellogg’s India (14 years), Lufthansa (14 years), Pepsi (14 years), HSBC (14 years), IBM (13 years), UB /USL (12 Years), Lenovo (9 years), Star India (9 years), Yum (8 years), Lifestyle (8 years), Birla Sun Life (6 years),Idea (5 years), Ultra Tech Cement (5 years)

Awards in 2014

In 2014, Mindshare won 33 awards: Dainik Bhaskar INK for Excellence in Newspaper (3 metals); 2nd Asian Consumer Engagement Awards (1 metal); Goafest 2014 Media Abby’s (7 metals); Indian Radio Forum Excellence in Radio awards (3 metals); Smarties APAC in Singapore (1 metal); Smarties India (Mobile Marketing Association)( 4 metals); EMVIES 2014 (12 metals); Campaign Agency of the Year 2014 (2 metals).

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