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This is what India’s ad industry honchos want in 2010

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This is what India’s ad industry honchos want in 2010

With the onset of a new year there also come new hopes and wishes to be fulfilled in that year. We spoke to industry honchos to name their three wishes for this year and they came up with an interesting list of what they are looking forward to in 2010. Let’s hope the ‘Genie’ up there is listening to their wishes. Read on…

Piyush Pandey, Executive Chairman and NCD, India and South Asia, O&M My threes wishes for 2010 that I would want to put down are some serious issues that I think any industry leaders would be concerned about. They are:

• Clients need to pay us better! We need to be given our dues for what we do and it’s high time that the clients need to understand this.
• Industry needs to attract more talent. We all are aware of Indian talent but as an industry we need to motivate this pool of talent to get more and better work release…
• Lastly and the most important wish, I would want to see India doing more advertising for the world and we are ready for it!

Prasoon Joshi, Executive Chairman, McCann Worldgroup India and Regional Creative Director, APAC, McCann Erickson.

We need forums where we can exchange ideas and exchange our learnings. We need to make selective efforts to better the industry aiming to make India the next Madison Avenue. And lastly, though most important, is the fact that we are becoming more serious, instead we should have more fun.

KV Sridhar (Pops), NCD, Leo Burnett

My three wishes are less promo ads and more theme ads. We need more new media, integrated campaigns with great idea works that should be the mantra for 2010.

Most importantly, agencies should be paid more and give us our right dues.

Prathap Suthan, NCD, Cheil Worldwide, SW Asia

May India keep growing stronger. Everything that we do, and everything we plan in advertising is based and built on the trust we have in market. Because it’s the market that eventually buys into the work that we do, and subsequently makes our clients meet their forecasts and targets. I am happier than ever that India defanged the slowdown monster, and we are back to looking at investing for better times.

May common sense come back stronger. On the face of it, it sounds like an affected wish. But trust me, these have been days when many of us would have run into barren lands where once rich waving heads of common sense flourished. All we had to do was hear the world’s financial deejays rock and roll the onset of bad times, and common sense resigned from the minds of many people. Not only did they kill the careers of many bright people, they have effectively reduced the talent in their own backyards. Besides making enough and more brainless decisions that will come back to ambush them. Hopefully hiring commonsense back will be priority.

May clients have more faith in their agencies. One of the most common diseases of these past uncertain times has been of clients who believed that the only panacea for their toothless advertising was sacking their agency and hiring a new one. While it could change fortunes occasionally, these have been unwise business tactics. I hope the New Year would have clients clearly see what’s best for their brand, and what’s the brightest way to get better ideas for their brand. Nothing works better than having an agency that’s loved by its client, and nothing’s worse than keeping an agency that’s petrified of its client.

Dhunji Wadia, Managing Partner, JWT

First, that Harry Potter performs an ‘Obliviate’ memory charm on all of us. That way, clients will forget how much they negotiated with their agencies in 2009 and agencies will forget how much they succumbed. Secondly, I hope Santa stays back after Christmas and shifts his focus to us poor adults in the New Year. Lastly, I hope that Pranab Mukherjee keeps smiling at us all through next year!

Bobby Pawar, Chief Creative Officer, Mudra Group

Invent a branded experience that acquires a life of its own and that grows on my consumer. Engage in meaningful mobile interaction that reaches out to the masses. Lastly, to create a workplace where people are encouraged to experiment a lot and do something so innovative that it surprises them as well.

Sandeep Pathak, Chief Executive Officer, Bates 141

Here goes my wish list. Reward – throw the excuse of the slowdown away once and for all and reward talent that has stuck with us through the last 24 months. Respect – get energies focused on creating more fame building work for the agency and our brands. So that it produces discontinuous results and makes both the agency and the brand famous. Rest – it’s been a crazy year personally and for a lot of colleagues, in terms of time spent in office. I would want to restore that balance back in 2010.

Sajan Raj Kurup, Chairman & Chief Creative Officer, Creativeland Asia

In the best interest of the marketers, may the practice of being forced to work with an internationally aligned network agency come to an end. In the best interest of advertising, may the agencies share ideas and collaborate more often. In the best interest of our country, may terror stay out of our land.

Kamal Basu, CEO, Saatchi & Saatchi

There are many wishes that I have for the year ahead, but if there were only three wishes for 2010 that I would be granted, they would be – I would not want 2009 to ever repeat itself. 2009 was a year that was never experienced before and hence, caught us unawares. We were ill-prepared for a tsunami that we mistook for a little wave. It is a miracle that we managed to keep our noses above water. Though I also believe that this year has been one of most learnings, be it people management, cost control and the power of strong client relationships.

Second wish is that we at Saatchi be at the forefront of New Media creative. It could be digital, online and mobile, but we should be a torch bearer. 2009 also strengthened my arms with Sourabh and Ramanuj joining Saatchi to partner me in Strategy and Creative. Together, we share a vision to put Saatchi on the New Media map. I sincerely wish that we have some showcase products in this space in 2010.

Lastly, it is my wish that I am in a position to suitably reward the team that stood by me through these tough times. Without their support we would be re-living the Titanic. In the same tone, I also wish that we can pay rich dividends to our clients who invested in us through the year.

Ajit Varghese, MD, Maxus India

Only if wishes were horses! But if I still were to wish for something, then it would be a healthy industry growth and competition, which keeps people happy and prices in control. Wish that too much and too little goes away. Second, technology can be integrated better for brand media solutions. With 500 million mobile users today, very little is available to reach them effectively and in a user friendly way. Third, better talent coming into the media industry or seeing a new, improved version of current people to take on the needs of the changed world.

Satyajit Sen, Chief Executive Officer, ZenithOptimedia

Greater ROI for our clients – return on intent, return on ideas and return on investment. Second wish will be to experience the rush of winning new businesses – adding to our knowledge base, developing perspectives, and third will be to have more fun for ‘we’ the people.

Anita Nayyar, CEO, MPG India

My three wishes would be more aggressive growth of business, resource cultivation and the fair measurement of agency perception.

Divya Radhakrishnan, President, TME

Media industry needs to get back to where we belong, scrambling for inventory has thrown all sensible media strategies out of the window. All product categories, at all times, across all TV channels has been the norm, this herd mentality needs to go. Consumers are fragmented, but the gadgets are converged, this paradox is the reality and it is high time we take cognizance of the same. Second would be research, especially TV, which garners Rs 7,000 crore of the pie, needs to expand to cover the rest of the 50 per cent TV homes in rural areas. Third, recognition of the role of media as a critical component of the mix has happened, but evaluation of media agencies is based on a procurement process, which makes it a mere transaction role. This need to change.

Shashi Shekhar, Editor-in-Chief, Hindustan

Other than my organisation, I wish for the safety of all Indians at the top of my wish-list for 2010. Hindustan newspaper should touch never before heights in terms of content, credibility and circulation in the year ahead. Fear should go away from everybody’s heart and all Hindustanis should feel safe, secure and proud. I would want to make my people and myself morally stronger in the coming year.

Harivansh, Editor, Prabhat Khabar

I am hoping to lay more emphasis on the credibility of news. I would like to make Prabhat Khabar a more credible and popular newspaper so that nobody can point a finger on the editorial content. I wish our staff, including stingers and reporters, could go through a training programme in 2010. I would also like to refrain from all kind of marketing gimmicks and other marketing tactics and would like to rely completely on editorial content.

Jehangir S Pocha, Co-founder, INX News

I hope India will digitise and reform cable and satellite distribution. Distortions in our existing analog set-up are hurting consumers and broadcasters. They also dampen our democracy by preventing new players and voices from entering broadcasting. I hope this Government has the political will (because that’s all it will take) to get the job done. I hope India realises it is ridiculous that broadband is defined as a 256KB line and costs Rs 1,000. In countries like Japan a 10MB line costs just Rs 500. This empowers consumers, facilitates the creation of new businesses and raises personal and corporate efficiency. India deserves these advantages too.

Moreover, India’s broadcasting industry must move to regulating itself more thoroughly. Currently, we live with unacceptable practices, such as the selling of news for cash or equity. Edit standards are also low, with words like ‘Exclusive’ and ‘Breaking News’ overused and abused. Sometimes fictional stories about space invaders appear in news bulletins. I think it’s time to respect our work and viewers more.


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