Elsie Mitchell, CEO, Mitchell Communications Group and CEO, Dentsu Public Relations Network, along with Adam Kerj, chief creative officer, 360i, and Naoko Katayama, executive planning director, Dentsu Network, brought out Dentsu’s views on the topic of ‘happy hacking’ on day five of the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity 2013.
From co-creation to happy hacking
Mitchell said, “Changes in technology and the advent of social media, has meant there’s thought of doing things with people other than your creative team and marketing department. In recent years, we’ve seen brands being open to ‘co-create’ with consumers. ‘Happy hacking’ is the next step. In the past, a strategy would be set up and consumers would be asked to follow that. Now, we go into a campaign and no one knows the outcome, because everything is left to the consumers.”
Katayama gave her prospective on the term. She explained, “Hacking used to be an internet term. It’s evolved now. It’s about challenging a perspective and reversing the order.”
Role of an agency
Kerj said, “Brands are not owned by the marketer or the agency. They’re owned by the consumers. The stuff we can do with technology now is enabling us to not only asking consumers to help with the outcome of a campaign, but to set a complete vision for the brand. This is an extreme form of a relationship, but one that has to happen.”
Katayama then spoke about an association between Dentsu, Honda and its consumers created soon after the Japan earthquake in 2011. “On 11 March, the disastrous earthquake took place in Japan. Twenty hours later, Dentsu and Honda had worked with consumers to launch an app called Internavi. Roads were wrecked and most of them weren’t functional. Internavi helped people pick right routes.”
“This shows that since advertising has begun, the role of an agency and its client relationship has changed. A set of rules that used to be observed earlier, have been taken out,” added Katayama.
Kerj surmised, “This shows one can never innovate or do something alone. Co-creation is challenging the limit of creativity.”