Lodestar UM shines @ inaugural FOMA

17 Nov,2011


By A Correspondent


The Festival of Media Asia 2011, the first Asian iteration of the acclaimed festival of media creativity and innovation, witnessed the conglomeration of over 600 attendees, over 40 speakers, and more than 50 of the world’s biggest brands. Held at the Marina Bay Sands Expo and Conference Centre, Singapore from November 13-15, 2011, the Festival sparked conversations and provided insights into the media and marketing industry as a whole and the scenario in the Asian region, which is expected to overtake Western Europe as the second-largest advertising market in 2012.

The Festival culminated in a gala dinner where the inaugural Festival of Media Asia Awards were given out, recognizing the most original and creative campaigns from the region. The awards were given across three top categories and 12 open categories. The Awards drew an overwhelming response – 410 entries from 16 countries, which were cut down to a shortlist of 81 from which the winners of the open categories were selected.

The top awards at the event were bagged by Ikon Communications, UM and Coca-Cola for Agency of the Year, Network of the Year, and Advertiser of the Year, respectively. From India, it was Lodestar Universal that bagged the only award in the category of Best Entertainment Platform.

Reacting on the win bagged by his agency, Shashi Sinha, CEO, Lodestar Universal Media said that it was a befitting reply to the spectacular work that the agency had been churning out on a consistent basis. “Being the only agency from India to bag an award is quite an achievement. That is because more often than not, Indian agencies don’t put up a good show where international awards are concerned. So it’s a big recognition for us and I would like to credit the team that worked on producing such an incredible piece of work.”

The rigorous selection process for the Awards was completed under the guidance of Rahul Welde, Chairman of the Jury, The Festival of Media Asia 2011 and Vice President – Media (Asia, Africa, Middle East, Turkey & Russia), Unilever. On the entries at the awards, Welde said, “There were a number of outstanding cases which just stood out as sure wins, and there were some close calls in a number of categories which stimulated very engaging discussions. The jury was unanimous that the submissions for the inaugural Festival of Media Asia Awards were excellent. It’s great to see this calibre of creativity, execution and effectiveness in our region, and kudos to the brands and agencies who are have turned out some splendid work – quite a few risking and trying something new.”

Focused on media and marketing in Asia, the session on Day 1 began with a short welcome address from Charlie Crowe, Festival founder and CEO of C Squared. Averred Crowe, “We want to make this an annual event. There is tremendous amount of creativity here, and we’re seeing this explosion of originality all over Asia. There is no better time to tap into it than right now.”

His speech was followed by a panel discussion which featured representatives from three major Chinese online corporations – Baidu, Youku and Tencent – talking about the digital revolution in China, and their plans to one day challenge giants like Google. Colin Currie, President and Managing Director, adidas Greater China, discussed the challenges involved in connecting with the Chinese consumer, and the way that adidas marketing evolved to take cultural and social sensitivities into consideration.

The next panel comprising panelists such as D N Prasad of Google – APAC, William Manfredi of Wunderman, Young & Rubicon, Shaun Ruming of McDonald’s Asia-Pacific, Middle East and Africa, and Barry Cupples of Omnicom Media Group, APAC, tackled the shortfall of talent in the media industry in Asia, and explored the reasons for this trend as well as strategies to manage this problem.

The most appreciated and talked about session was the enthralling keynote by Carolyn Everson, Vice-President, Global Marketing Solutions, Facebook. Everson held the audience captive as she previewed Facebook’s new Timeline feature, talked through the importance of capitalizing on people’s social connection as the basis for marketing, and then presented how Facebook could support brands looking to create connections with their consumers. “Social discovery is the most powerful driver of human behaviour in the world today,” said Everson, “We have always asked our friends for recommendations.”

Rahul Welde, Vice-President – Media, Unilever Asia, Africa, Middle East, Turkey and Russia, took the conference even further by looking at how marketers would have to change their mindsets and reframe themselves. He offered new and different ways to think, including enhancing interaction and experience, as ways for marketers to address the changing ways that people are relating to media, particularly digital and social media.

Other notable feature was the Agency CEO tours of media innovation, which took place several times during the event. Leading CEOs took to the stage to showcase and share an innovative or special campaign that had run during the year.


Awards at a glance:

The open categories and winners of The Festival of Media Asia 2011 Awards are as follows:

Best Communications Strategy – Break up for National Australian Bank/ ZenithOptimedia /Australia

Highly Commended – Mars Play Challenge for Mars / Starcom Melbourne / Australia

Best Contribution to a Campaign by a Media Owner – 11 Degrees New Media Film Project for Chevrolet Cruz / Youku.com / China

Highly Commended – Invite Mr Wright for Canon / Discovery Networks Asia Pacific / Singapore

Best Entertainment Platform – Coke Studio for Coca-Cola / Lodestar UM / India

Best In-Store Activation – Burst of Freshness for Comfort / Mindshare Vietnam / Vietnam

Best Targeted Campaign – Whiskas Pledge for Whiskas / Starcom Melbourne / Australia

Best Use of Content – Johnnie Walker Yulu for Johnnie Walker Black Label / BBH Asia Pacific / Singapore

Best Use of Digital Landscape – Property Guide iPhone Application for The Commonwealth Bank of Australia / Ikon Communications / Australia

Highly Commended – Polident Bridges the Generation Gap for Polident / MediaCom China / China

Best Use of Emerging Technology – Property Guide iPhone Application for The Commonwealth Bank of Australia / Ikon Communications / Australia

Highly Commended – Woolworths iPhone and Android Application for Woolworths / Tigerspike / Australia

Creative Use of Media – Interactive TV for Coca-Cola / UM / Hong Kong

The Effectiveness Award – Australia Kinect for Xbox Kinect / UM / Australia

The Public Service Award – Harnessing People Power to Let People Know That Speed Kills for The Transport Accident Commission / Naked Communications / Australia

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