Goafest 2012: An advertising festival for all in South Asia who are in the business of creating ideas

At a press conference held yesterday, the Goafest Committee announced the highlights of Goafest 2012. This year's Goa festival is themed the "Magic of Ideas' and would be held on April 19th to 21st at the Zuri White Sands in South Goa.

This year, it would be an advertising festival for all in South Asia involved in creating ideas.

"For the first time, the festival is inviting countries across South Asia ” Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Nepal ” as delegates as well as award entrants. When we look at the communication and marketing plan across countries it's different, but when clients look at it they find it in the same geographic with small differences and few similarities. Our idea is to facilitate learning from each other by going across South Asia." said, Goafest Committee Chairman, Arvind Sharma.

He further elaborated saying, "This year the festival is looking at strong client participation. Beyond the Conclave, senior clients are expected to be an integral part of the knowledge seminars. The Goafest Committee is also looking to attract young client delegates in large numbers. It is offering a special package for under-30 marketers. We're confident that well over 50 major client organisations will take part in the festival this year. Clients are the important part of the process, unless agencies and client shares common view of great advertising, great craft and great possibilities this process will be not moving as well as the show. So, it's extremely important to have clients at all levels i.e. senior, middle and junior and we are pushing for that."

This year at Goafest is expected to encourage many more specialist agencies to come forward and enter their work. Where they can share best of their work with us, to get industries to learn from them and where industries would recognize and celebrate together. This is likely to give a further impetus to the trend observed over the last few years. For instance, in 2011 over 140 agencies sent their awards entries for Abbies at Goafest. A large number of these were specialist agencies. Abbies are open to all those who create ideas. They do not have to be AAAI or Ad Club members.

"We have received a very positive response from countries in South Asia. We are looking forward to our road shows to promote the festival in those markets," said Nagesh Alai, President of Advertising Agencies Association of India (AAAI). He added, "All South Asian agencies will participate in the main awards show. However, there will also be "The best of rest of South Asia' in each of the verticals."

Consistent with its growing importance, Digital will find a place of pride at Goafest 2012. Digital Awards will be held on April 20th as will Media Awards. Design, Direct Awards will also be held on April 20th. As in the past, for the rest of the Creative, April 21st is the Awards night.

One area where Goafest 2012 will be no different from previous years is that AAAI and Ad Club Bombay will be working together in partnership for the 5th year to deliver robust awards to celebrate creativity. "Last year's awards were well received by the industry. The Awards Governing Council will follow the same tight processes with some fine tuning in 2012," said Shashi Sinha, President, The Advertising Club Bombay and Chairman of the Awards Governing Council, the joint AAAI and Ad Club Bombay body that runs the awards.

He further added that, "Over the years, specialist areas like OOH, ambient, design, interactive digital advertising, direct, and integrated advertising have been growing in importance. In recognition of this, the Abbies at Goafest will have a provision for Grand Prix in all the nine verticals. It may be recalled that last year Grand Prix were given only in Film, Print and Radio verticals. This year Grand Prix is also being introduced in media awards."

In line with the overall festival theme, Goafest 2012 Conclave is themed "Ideas for impacting the full circle'. The Conclave aims to help the entire industry gear up for opportunities that lie ahead.

The names of jury members are slated to be announced in a couple of weeks. Other details like delegates and entry fees too will be announced shortly.

Goafestival 2012 is inviting global leaders from major clients as well as major communications groups to participate in the Conclave. It would be a high budget event.


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