Twenty-two years back the Indian advertising was just maturing . We had some of the brightest brains from many management institutes, including the much reputed IIM’s attracting this industry, but that story has come to an end. No major reputed management schools invite advertising agencies for campus recruitment now. The reasons are many – starting from attractive package and the job challenge the industry is offering. Also, too much of hype with high publicity could be another reason.
The industry had very few business magazines and dailies which devoted in promoting the agencies. Even the quality of paper in terms of reproduction and coverage was very limited but as time passed by, today, we have every newspaper offering a weekly supplement on marketing. But more often we only see the Ad Gurus being featured week after week with occasional appearance of some noted marketing pundits. I sometimes ask myself if it is really required to do so much of chest thumping to self promote, instead of showcasing great work and interesting case studies. Also two decades back, we had very few advertising professionals who were more concerned with their client’s work and their interaction with the media was limited. Today that has quadrupled and what we hear are quotes and sound bytes - some relevant and some off the tangent. I am hoping this will slowly change as clients are today seeking more value for their brands through action and not words.
Give me a hardworking campaign any day:
Great advertising campaign examples and successful marketing case studies must be exposed in such papers without any doubt. This could be both Indian and international examples. These will really help the consumer, students from management schools, and prospects who are seeking to partner or join good creative agencies.
I still remember that many clients in today’s world candidly tell the agencies who pitch for their business – show me the piece of work done by the group which will work on our brand. They are not bothered about the work done by some of the (Patli Gully work) other branches for some accolades achieved in the form of awards.
A few years back, I had gone for a meeting to a client who had put us on notice. During the discussion, one of my senior colleague mentioned that we recently won some awards and some good visibility. The reply to this from the client was – you guys are great in building your agency but that does not excite us. Tell me what have you done for my brand so far and tell me what you can do in the near future.
Clients have become very smart and canny; let’s stop fooling them by doing PR for the agency and oneself. End of the day we must realize that our dal roti comes from campaign that delivers results and help building their brand.
PR is a must, over dosage will kill credibility:
There is absolutely no harm in doing genuine PR. But most of the times this does not happen. We have the maximum awards this industry offers and therefore to fill up the spaces of some of the marketing dailies just wait for either covering this awards function or getting quotes from the advertising experts. So much of awards on an ongoing basis have prompted some of the ad agencies not to participate or even if they participate look at only the selective ones. The over dosage of awards and repeatedly seeing the same mug shots and clichéd quotes has to a large extent diluted the interest levels and the credibility of the news that get published. On a global basis on advertising, we have just one or two magazines which have a tremendous equity and it covers this industry in depth with lot of substance and meat. It’s time we also move on the same direction to give our audience some quality and credible coverage, which can impart new knowledge and learning.
Lastly let me also salute this industry as this industry has built several brands over the past several years and has also built in several processes and business ethics. Also on the international front, we have made our stamp by creating world class campaigns.
If the stalwarts of this industry focus on the bigger picture instead of self promotion, it will definitely provide a boost to this industry and we will see more talent being attracted to the industry.