It is Goafest time again. Scheduled from April 5 to 9, 2011, the Industry Conclave will take place on April 7, followed by two days of the fest including award evenings and seminars. After nearly months of discussion on the subject of hosting Abbys at Goafest, the Advertising Agencies Association of India (AAAI) and the Ad Club Bombay have finally resolved their issues, and the awards will be held during Goafest this year as well.
By and large, industry folks appear to have high expectations from the festival, and most of the industry heads we spoke to, say that they are hoping they won’t be disappointed with scam work and uninspiring international speakers. While Rajiv Rao, national creative director, Ogilvy & Mather expects more of everything that has been happening in the past edition from this year’s fest including sun, sand, madness, inspiration, and entries, Bobby Pawar, chief creative officer, Mudra Group, noted that one of the points that needs to be discussed at Goafest among the agencies is the issue of agency remuneration. “It is getting worse. Unless we collectively look at solving the problem, it is going to be a tough time for the industry. Moreover, I would really like to see a lot more good speakers at the seminars. I think that part could be richer.”
Hoping to have a clean and transparent awards process this year, Agnello Dias, founder and chief creative officer, Taproot India, does not want a repeat of last year’s bad blood. “I sincerely hope it is a celebration of good work rather than a celebration of bad entries,” he added.
Rohit Ohri, managing partner, JWT, expects that the organising committee will choose the international speakers judiciously, and have a few inspiring people from the international fraternity. He said, “If I were to look at the speakers from scratch, I would look at people who have created big ideas and who can inspire the youngsters who will be attending Goafest. Over a period of time, we are feeling that we are losing a lot of good people from the industry, and we really want speakers who can infuse fresh blood into the lower rung. We also want inspirational people to tell the young talent and remind others on why we are in this business.”
Though Jishnu Sen, COO, Grey India has never been to any of the Goafests held till date, he hopes to make it to the event this year, adding, “I think what it does for the industry is that it allows everyone a chance to see the best work from the industry at one place, meet your peers and listen to some amazing speakers. I am sure that the organisers will pull up their socks and continue to deliver a marvellous event this year too.” On speakers for this year’s festival, Sen said, “I think they will have somebody from the area of social media since it is becoming big across the industry. Personally, I don’t mind listening to a purist from the creative fraternity and watch traditional advertising.” It remains to be seen what Goafest 2011 is going to be remembered for, but here’s hoping it will be for all the right reasons.
Bobby Pawar, chief creative officer, Mudra Group
“I would really like to see a lot more good people at the seminars. I think that part could be richer. I think people just coming and showing what they have done in the past is not going to add much value. At the seminars, we also need to have speakers who can talk about the future and share what is happening in their markets. Based on these, we can develop an understanding and implement it in our markets. So, we want more new-age people coming over and talk about the direction in which the industry is headed.”
Rajiv Rao, national creative director, Ogilvy & Mather
“More sun, more sand, more madness, more inspiration, more beer, more hangovers, more entries, more excitement, more bitching, more interesting panel discussions, more late night revelry, more young talent, more jury bashing, more bikinis, more sarongs, more cutting-edge work, more celebration...”
Agnello Dias, founder and chief creative officer, Taproot India
“I hope that it is a transparent and clean awards festival this year, without any of the bad blood that we had last year. I sincerely hope it is a celebration of good work rather than a celebration of bad entries. Usually the seminars and conferences are poorly attended. I hope a lot more people start attending them. I hope they get some really good names-outside of mainstream advertising- like in the area of digital, which will attract a lot more attendees to these seminars.”
Rohit Ohri, managing partner, JWT
“One of the big expectations that I have from Goafest is to see great work on big brands. We have been seeing a lot of work over the last few years, and increasingly it is work which is proactive on certain brands which are small and insignificant that are not seen by most people across the country. We hope to see really big ideas which are executed in the most marvellous manner as the main communication backbone of the brand and not as a small initiative that the brand has done.”
Jishnu Sen, chief operating officer, Grey India
“I think what it does for the industry is that it allows everyone a chance to see the best work from the industry at one place, meet your peers and listen to some amazing speakers. The industry is growing very well in the last year, and I expect that many more agencies will compete and win the awards this year, as opposed to the handful of agencies in the past.”