Home >> Cannes-Lions-2011 >> Article

Dheeraj Sinha @ Cannes: Advertising Was Selfish, Engagement Is Social

27-June-2011
Font Size   16
Dheeraj Sinha @ Cannes: Advertising Was Selfish, Engagement Is Social

The counter argument to the world of 24x7 connectivity is already taking shape. The once celebrated idea of the digital natives, living a life that’s always on, seems to be meeting with some protest. Crispin Porter Bogusky’s campaign for Window’s Mobile 7, titled ‘Really’ (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6IrIND6bkwk), gives us a peek into the beginning of this trend.

It’s interesting to see a mobile phone brand take a stance against our submissive immersion to the gadget. The phone is positioned as - designed to get you in and out and back to life - and provokes people to live real over digital. ‘Be here now’ is the tagline. Love the idea and the execution, partly because we were onto a similar thinking sometime back for one of the brands, but the idea got jettisoned. But more importantly, because it reflects a larger shift in the way marketing and communication is moving. While advertising by definition was selfish about what it had to sell, today’s construct of engagement is more worried about what’s socially important. Even if it at times it goes against the logic of your own product.

The presentation by Dentsu’s Akira Kagami underlined this need for advertising to stand up to a social situation as that of Japan. The work that he shared did a brilliant job of helping people keep their calm and telling them the etiquettes during an emergency situation like this. To my mind, this was an example of advertising as a function putting the society above itself. The desire and its ability to bring larger meaning to the society is apparent in a lot of work that’s been put out by this industry in the recent times. This was also the sentiment in Crispin Porter Bogusky’s panel when they spoke about giving a larger mission to their brands.

The veteran of creativity, Edward De Bono in fact went on and blamed poor thinking for all the ills of today’s governance and society. As one of the examples, he spoke about the problem of parking in premium places. His solution was to create headlight-on parking zones. People who park in these zones would have to leave the headlight on. This would ensure that they would rush back to their cars as soon as they can, to prevent the battery from draining out. De Bono’s offer is that creative thinking can make this world a better place – not just help sell soaps and oil.

The new outward orientation of brand communications, the desire to find the culturally meaningful stuff, the desire to create engagement and not always a sales pitch can redeem advertising of its selfishness. There is evidence that people today are having conversations about brands in their lives far more than they ever did. And these conversations will neither be about the ‘key benefit’ nor the ‘reason to believe’ that our brand documents so obsess about. But they can surely be about some socially meaningful stuff that people care about.

(Dheeraj Sinha is the author of ‘Consumer India – Inside the Indian Mind and Wallet’ & Regional Planning Director, Bates141.)

Stuart Bowden talks about purchase journey, the revised version of Cannes Lions, Wavemaker India’s performance and a lot more

Emery says everything that Unilever CMO Keith Weed says has a touch of genius. He also talks about his expectations from Cannes, WPP without Sir Martin Sorrell and his love for Mindshare India.

In an interaction with exchange4media, PC Musthafa, CEO & Co-Founder iD Fresh Food shares how the brand deals with competition and marketing strategies followed by them.

Varun Raina, Marketing Manager, Airbnb India speaks to exchange4media about the successful #LiveThere campaign and how Bollywood helps them connect with its young consumer

right
left
EMINENT JURY CONGREGATES TO PICK WINNERS OF INDIAN DIGITAL MARKETING AWARDS 2018 OFF THE CUFF SEES ‘SWACHH BHARAT ABHIYAN’ MAN PARAMESWARAN IYER IN CONVERSATION WITH SHEKHAR GUPTA EXCHANGE4MEDIA’S LOUDEST.IN HOSTS INAUGURAL EDITION OF MUSIC INC. IN MUMBAI EMINENT JURY CONGREGATES TO PICK IMPACT’S 40UNDERFORTY ACHIEVERS PORTER PRIZE & INSTITUTE FOR COMPETITIVENESS RECOGNIZE STRATEGIC ACUMEN IN COMPANIES DELHI AD CLUB-SAARC AWARDS 2018 RECOGNIZE EXCELLENCE ACROSS CREATIVE, MEDIA & DIGITAL AGENCIES BSNL & CALL2ACTION COMMUNICATION INDIA LAUNCH MOBILE ADVERTISING PLATFORM, INFOMO IN NEW DELHI CHILDREN’S RIGHTS ACTIVIST KAILASH SATYARTHI LAUNCHES BOOK ‘EVERY CHILD MATTERS’ SENIOR JOURNALIST VIJAY TRIVEDI LAUNCHES BOOK ‘YADA YADA HI YOGI’ BASED ON YOGI ADITYANATH EMINENT JURY CONGREGATES TO PICK IMPACT’S 40UNDERFORTY ACHIEVERS PORTER PRIZE & INSTITUTE FOR COMPETITIVENESS RECOGNIZE STRATEGIC ACUMEN IN COMPANIES DELHI AD CLUB-SAARC AWARDS 2018 RECOGNIZE EXCELLENCE ACROSS CREATIVE, MEDIA & DIGITAL AGENCIES MARK TULLY, OTHER JOURNALISTS HONOURED BY MUMBAI PRESS CLUB AT ANNUAL REDINK AWARDS TALENTED YOUNGSTERS GET TO PRESENT THEIR WORK BEFORE STALWARTS IN THE AD INDUSTRY INDIA RADIO FORUM 2018 RECOGNIZES EXCELLENCE IN RADIO INDUSTRY OFF THE CUFF HAS JOURNALIST ARUN SHOURIE IN CONVERSATION WITH SHEKHAR GUPTA IN MUMBAI IAA HOSTS FIRST INDIAA REGIONAL AWARDS (TELUGU) IN HYDERABAD BREAK THE CEILING TOUCH THE SKY 2018 SEES OVERWHELMING INDUSTRY PARTICIPATION 10TH EDITION OF ABC EUREKA AWARDS IN MUMBAI CELEBRATES WORK OF PARTNER AGENCIES EMINENT JURY PICKS LOUDEST’S 100 MOST POWERFUL INDIAN MUSIC BUSINESS LEADERS

In a conversation hosted by COVERGIRL and creative agency Droga5, this session discussed how creators push the boundaries of creativity by giving women the power to define it

The Pandey Khandaan, as promised, was in full attendance to watch brothers Piyush and Prasoon receive top honours.

The Japanese brand plans aggressive entry into Indian TV market