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Published on: May 15, 2022, 2:16 p.m.
Goafest 2022: Celebrating creativity, inclusivity and talent
  • TLG India (The Leo Burnett Group) celebrates its big win as creative agency of the year

By Arzoo Dina

After a hiatus of two long years, owing to the pandemic, Goafest returned in all its glory, witnessing the advertising, marketing and media fraternity converge on the sunny shores of the state. Held from 5-7 May at the Grand Hyatt Goa, the event saw nearly 1,500 members in attendance, celebrating creativity, inclusivity and talent.

The 15th edition of the festival kicked off with the unveiling of the AAAI’s (The Advertising Agencies Association of India) new logo, and also marked the collaboration of the prestigious ABBY awards with The One Show, in an effort to make it more global. The underlying theme of Goafest this year was, ‘celebrating the superpower within’.

The industry conclave marked the start of the festival, with several insightful sessions. Vinita Singh, co-founder & CEO, Sugar Cosmetics, spoke about the importance of building a brand with quality products and content before focusing on advertising. Actress Yami Gautam was seen conversing with Rana Barua, chairman, ABBY Awards Governing Council 2022 and vice president of the Ad Club, about films, values and the need to build a life beyond numbers. Other sessions revolved around how short-form content is going to be the future. “If you can’t catch the attention of your consumer within two seconds, you have lost them,” said Ankush Sachdeva, co-founder and CEO, Sharechat and Moj.

Speaking about Goafest 2022, Anupriya Acharya, president, AAAI said: “It’s been a tough two years, and it’s great to be back on ground not only in terms of organising the festival, but also where achievements are concerned. We are thrilled to have everyone back, bonding and celebrating this festival.”

Day 1 wrapped up with the Publisher and Media ABBYs. A total of 15 Publisher ABBYs and 87 Media ABBYs were awarded. Lodestar UM won the Grand Prix for Mumbai Police for their campaign ‘The Punishing Signal’. The evening also saw agencies like Mindshare and Madison take home a number of awards as the biggest winners in the Media ABBYs, while the Publisher ABBYs saw FCB pick up two golds, and Bennett Coleman & Company Limited was awarded Publisher of the Year, with four bronzes and one gold.

Talking shop

The next day was equally exciting with a strong line-up of content, leadership summits and seminars. A highlight of the day was the knowledge session on OTT superpower – freedom and nuances of creativity. The session was about how OTT changed not only the lives of audiences but also creators. Next, Sam Glassenberg, founder & CEO of Level Ex shed light on the potential of video games and how brands can reach audiences through this medium.

Throughout the day, master classes were also organised with presenters from Sharechat, Google, Snapchat, and Meta, focused on topics such as how the creator economy is driving brand success, how to appeal to consumers in a cool new way, the power of camera marketing, and Instagram for business – a spotlight on creator and reels.

But it wasn’t all just work and no play. The evening wrapped up in time for the ABBY One Show Awards. A total of 32 Broadcaster ABBYs, 19 Design & Design Craft ABBYs, 40 Digital & Digital Craft ABBYs, 31 Direct ABBYs, 7 Mobile ABBYs, 32 Public Relations and 16 Technology ABBYs were given out to deserving winners. 

Ending on a high

The last day of the festival concluded with power-packed seminars, conclaves and lots to celebrate. Mithali Raj, the Indian Women’s Cricket Captain, was seen in conversation with Sharlene Lobo, anchor, Mirror Now, discussing the rising profile of women’s cricket in India, Mithali said that there have been many improvements over the last decade, from training to accessible amenities. She emphasised the importance of nurturing a sports culture across India

This was followed by a keynote delivered by Sandeep Bhushan, director and head of India GMS for Meta who enthralled the audience with his insights on the road to the metaverse – interaction and immersion. He spoke about how the internet evolved from a text-based platform, to photos, videos and is now looking at an immersive experience. He added: “Metaverse will feel different. It will have continuity, your presence and will be connected across multiple devices.”

The day also saw an impactful influencer session, ‘celebrating the superpower within – the responsible influencer’ with Ranveer Allahbadia, Niharika NM, Raj Shamani, and Madan Gowri moderated by Viraj Sheth, co-founder & CEO of Monk Entertainment. The discussion ranged from the relativity and subjectivity of being an influencer to the future of this so-called ‘bubble’. The panel spoke about the advantages of being a content creator, touching upon the shortcomings of being an influencer, especially when it comes to collaborating with a brand.

The highlight of the night was the finale of the ABBY One Show Awards. TLG India (The Leo Burnett Group) won big, walking away with the ‘creative agency of the year’, and taking home several other awards across categories. In all, a total of nearly 200 metals were handed across a total of 15 categories.

FCB India walked away with the most golds that day, while Cheil India was awarded the title of branded content and entertainment agency of the year. Famous Innovations picked up several metals including a Grand Prix for its work for Radio Zindagi’s ‘The Applegram’ in the out of home/ambient category.

According to Partha Sinha, president, The Advertising Club: “Reinvigorating Goafest after a break of two years was a challenge that we successfully sailed through. After months of dedication and relentless work by the AAAI and The Advertising Club teams, bringing down the international jury and the enthusiasm that we witnessed from all has resulted in yet another great festival this year.”

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