Opinion | Features
Over the weekend, pictures of naked celebrities including Hunger Games actress Jennifer Lawrence appeared on the internet after a hacker breached Apple’s iCloud. It was, as Lawrence has said, “a flagrant violation of privacy.” But was it bad PR?
Tony Ahn, who manages celebrities at his PR firm Tony Ahn & Co, answered Mumbrella’s questions about the impact of the leak on the images of those involved.
What do you think the impact of this leak will have on Jennifer Lawrence from a PR perspective?
Lowe India creative chief R. Balki on Bollywood, why he said no to a global job, why he doesn’t enter awards, the enduring power of Amitabh Bachchan, and the need to pay young creatives more than US$4,000 a year
R. Balakrishnan, better known in adland as Balki, is chairman and creative overlord of one of India’s largest advertising agencies, Lowe Lintas. He’s also a Bollywood film-maker with three movies to his name, all of them starring the biggest TV and movie personality India has ever known, Amitabh Bachchan.
In this interview with Mumbrella’s Asia editor Robin Hicks from his office in Mumbai, Balki talks about the relationship between Bollywood and adland, why the role of the regional ECD is dead, why there are so few successful expats in India, who he respects among his peers, and why he doesn’t enter award shows.
Have some of India’s most high profile ad and media men been around too long? Does India need an injection of new blood?
The week in review: Twitter confirms Indonesia launch | Nicole Seah steps back from politics | Cathay Pacific promo swamped | SingTel commercial chief leaves Singapore | Graham Kelly quits Isobar | Kotex says Chinese men are less reliable than sanitary pads | Handy guide for awards scammers
In a week in which WPP’s regional talent honcho left to join McCann, Jean-Michel Wu left WPP for McCann, the South China Morning Post was flamed for dubbing a popular Cathay Pacific ticket promotion as a “scam”, Unilever dominated a mobile marketing awards shortlist, and Kotex managed to demean the men, women and cats of China in two 30-second videos.
Earlier this week, news emerged that Graham Kelly would be moving on from Isobar, where he was Asia Pacific executive creative director. The agency has been vague on whether it will replace the role or scrap it altogether, as PR agency Zeno did when Kestrel Lee left a few months ago.
With this in mind, Mumbrella asked a few ECDs and CEOs for their view one of the most contentious roles in advertising in Asia. Does the regional ECD have a future in this part of the world?
Probably because brands can’t seem to be able to talk frankly and openly about something that is applied to a woman’s vagina, so they tend to resort to all sorts of bizarre metaphors that beat around the bush, as it were, raising some prickly issues along the way.
A new campaign from Kotex in China, press released today, pulls off a remarkable feat. In just two 30-second videos – which agency Ogilvy describes in a press release as “funny viral video ads” – Kotex has succeeded in demeaning men, women and the internet’s favourite animal at the same time.
At the end of last year, a group of independent agencies in Singapore got together to form a collective of agencies called IAN, named after celebrated creative Ian Batey, one of the brains behind the best work ever created for Singapore Airlines in decades past during his time at Batey Ads.
In this interview with a number of IAN’s members, including Blak Labs founder Charlie Blower, Up & Up owner Anand Vathiyar, Wild’s Khee Jin Ng and the Alchemy Partnership’s Alvin Wong, Mumbrella asked how the model works in practice, if IAN posed a genuine threat to the established multinational agencies, and whether they had plans to expand beyond Singapore.
When you held your first meeting as a group, what were the key things to emerge in terms of what you want to achieve?
Buzzfeed India lead editor Rega Jha on content strategy, copycat competition, and whether traditionally taboo stories are shareable in India
Buzzfeed officially launched in India just over a week ago, offering the country’s 240+ million internet users a mixture of quirky lists, social justice stories and Bollywood celebrity tittle-tattle. Leading the editorial team is Rega Jha, a former Vogue, Rolling Stone and Times of India journalist who moved from Buzzfeed HQ in New York to Mumbai to set up Buzzfeed India.
Mumbrella was in Mumbai to ask Jha about her plans for the year ahead, the challenges Buzzfeed faces to get up and running, whether stories about rape cases are shareable in India, and whether traditional players feel threatened by the producers of top ten lists and celebrity wedding pictures.
What’s been the biggest challenge about setting up Buzzfeed India so far?
The week in review: Maybank Kim Eng pitch | New rules for India's skin whitening brands | 'Asia's creative leaders scammed their way to top' | Time Out closes print edition as Buzzfeed launches in India | Search firm folds | 3D selfie maker comes to Asia
In a week in which India’s ad watchdog released guidlines for advertisers of whitening products, Sir Martin Sorrell had a pop at Google and Publicis Groupe, Uber spread across India, Saatchi & Saatchi Singapore re-arranged the deck chairs as boss Paul Roebuck leaves for the US, Stuff Singapore took ladies off its front cover, and an American shopping mall produced possibly the worst ad ever made.
India is an increasingly popular destination for international agencies to set up shop these days, particularly with a new prime minister promising economic reform and easier access for foreigns firms. AKQA opened an office in Gurgaon in July and Razorfish launched following an acquisition by Publicis Groupe last year.
So what does it take to launch a successful agency in India? Mumbrella was in Mumbai to ask Subhash Kamath, CEO and managing partner of BBH India, which launched in India’s commercial capital five and a half years ago.
First, can you give us a bit of background about the history of BBH India?
Piyush Pandey on winning an election, exporting Indian ideas, the creatives he admires, his proudest moments, scam, and the future of advertising in the world's biggest democracy
Piyush Pandey worked as a tea taster before joining Ogilvy & Mather as a trainee account executive in 1982. Almost exactly thirty-two years later, he is the executive chairman and national creative director of Ogilvy & Mather India and South Asia, and has been named the most influential adman in the world’s largest democracy for eight consecutive years by The Economic Times.
In this interview with Mumbrella Asia’s editor Robin Hicks from Pandey’s home in the heart of Mumbai, the Jaipur-born winner of more than 600 creative awards talks about the role he played in getting India’s new prime minister elected, the creatives he most admires, his proudest moments, the biggest challenges facing India’s ad industry, whether Indian advertising can cross borders, scam, and an idea that came to him while riding on the back of a motorbike.
Corinna Choong is the senior director of marketing and communications at Singapore’s newest university, the Singapore University of Technology and Design, which was set up in collaboration with MIT in 2010.
In this Q&A with Mumbrella’s Asia editor Robin Hicks, the former SingTel and Procter & Gamble marketer, who judged at the APPIES last week, talks about what defines her as a marketer, the toughest thing about marketing in Singapore, and why she values creative above all other disciplines.
Tell us a bit about your background as a marketer.
No matter what the traditional perception of Asia as a connected economy is, the truth is that we have one of the lowest levels of digital investment on the planet.
On its own that’s an alarming fact to consider. But combine that with the fact that we have among the highest levels of social media adoption in the world and its becomes something of an oddity.
The week in review: 'Our ad ran once because Singapore is small' | Crocs eats APAC marketing | Buzzfeed launches in India | Twitter's video offering for brands | What makes a creative team work? | Make cupcakes not war
In a week in which plastic clogs brand Crocs restructured its APAC marketing operation, Buzzfeed launched in India, Twitter launched a video offering for brands, Strawberry frog lost the founding MD of its Singapore office and a bunch of expats press released their campaign to woo Singaporeans with cupcakes.
What’s the secret to a creative partnership that lasts? Andy Greenaway and Bruce Matchett, creative directors at Sapient Nitro, have known each other for almost 30 years. The duo nicknamed the “grumpy old men” talk about the secret to longevity in a creative team.
Greenaway (pictured, right) and Matchett first met at one of Neil French’s regional creative meetings when they were both working at Ogilvy & Mather (Greenaway in Singapore, Matchett in New Zealand). They struck up a friendship straight away. In 2009, Greenaway asked Matchett to join him at Saatchi & Saatchi as ECD for Singapore and Malaysia. They worked there together for three years. The old team was reunited in February at SapientNitro two months ago when Greenaway, who is APAC chief creative officer, appointed Matchett, who’d left Saatchi’s at the end of 2013, as regional creative director. In this interview, the duo talk about what makes a strong creative partnership, and how to hold it together.
Tell us about your first creative partnership.
PubMatic CEO Rajeev Goel on taking on Google, arbitrage and trading desks, and the future of programmatic in Asia
In this interview with Mumbrella Asia editor Robin Hicks, Goel talks about taking on Google, agency trading desks and arbitrage, and what the demise of Brandscreen said about the programmatic trading space in Asia.
You’re up against the might of Google. How do you compete?
McCann Philippines account manager Kristelle Davantes found dead
A 25-year old account manager who worked at McCann WorldGroup in the Philippines has been found dead.
Kristelle Davantes, a senior account manager at McCann’s digital offering MRM, was found by police on Saturday after going missing on Friday.
A report on ABS-CBNnews.com confirmed the news of her passing yesterday.
Davantes was just over two years into her job at MRM.
McCann has released the following statement:
McCann Worldgroup Philippines would like to extend sincere appreciation to the people who express condolences and kind words of support in the passing of one of our own- Kristelle “Kae” Davantes.
Kae was an account manager at MRM Manila and had been with us since September 2011.
We are shocked and saddened by this news. We are one with the Davantes family in this time of grief and we will continue to offer them our full support. We respect their request for privacy in this time of bereavement, as we await the complete and accurate details from the ongoing investigation.
McCann requests everyone to offer prayers for Kae’s eternal repose as
well as strength and courage for her loved ones.
Davantes joined MRM in September 2011 from SnapWorks Digital.
Before starting a career in advertising, she attended the prestigious De La Salle University where she graduated with a Master’s degree in marketing communications.
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