Ron Samuel's AdFest Dairy: Day 1

Ron 1.jpegRon Samuel is executive creative director/partner Cooch Creative & Communication (pictured left) reports for Campaign Brief Asia from AdFest 2018.

Day 1. Wednesday 21 March
The theme for this is year is 'Transform', which is very relevant given the challenges and changes facing our industry. I saw quite few transformations on our first night in town, which was an early one by AdFest standards.

For me, this year seems to be about an industry trying to work out what's going to happen next and how creativity must adapt, if it is to have a voice. This was reflected in the speaker line up which looked beyond advertising to try and make sense of where we are heading.
Ron4.jpegGreg Attwell (left), from Finch, gave a compelling and important presentation on why it is so important to correct the gender imbalance in creative technology, and give young female minds the confidence and support to use technology for creative problem solving.

Tamon Fujimi, from Massive Music, demonstrated the powerful difference that the right music can make to marketing, especially to a millennial audience.

Change was clearly evident in the work in display, and even the way it was displayed this year. The press and poster work, which used to take pride of place as the first stuff on display, was relegated to the distant rear of the display area.

Ron2.jpegBranded content, Interactive and Social were centre stage. I don't think I saw any entries that did not have video content as the focal piece of work. The Tiny Doll film for Kleenex was a standout.

The design work on display was Ron3.jpegexcellent and you were able to touch and play with the entries in the branded product category to see how they actually worked, or didn't.

It was interesting to note how many of the social or interactive campaigns were kicked off by a great idea in a well-executed TV commercial. I don't believe that some of the social campaigns would have gained traction so fast without it. Much like Australia's Crocodile Dundee campaign, without the Superbowl ad.

Sitting back and watching the TV shortlist didn't require the same level of concentration as reading the entries in the other categories and you could tell that the audience appreciated that as well. Even though there were people from different countries and cultures in the same room, the good work still got the collective laughs or generated a reaction. The spot for Orange with the old guys rapping was a standout, funny, engaging, memorable and it got people talking. Same for Verana Sure, a very different way to look at your own body. An original, refreshing idea well executed.

Top 3 highlights of day 1.
1.     Orange TVC
2.     Product design
3.     Catching up with old friends.

Ron 6.jpeg

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