Dubai, a Tal­ented Mar­ket with edgy mar­keters

ArabAd - - COVER STORY -

What sets Dubai apart from other coun­tries in the Mid­dle East-es­pe­cially when it comes to craft­ing award-win­ning cam­paigns? Dubai works a bit like a trend bench­mark when it comes to keep­ing up with global trends. The brands (I don’t like to call them clients) are get­ting more de­mand­ing and re­spond­ing to an equally in­creas­ingly de­mand­ing con­sumer. The lines be­tween Me­dia/ Cre­ative/pr are get­ting more and more blurred. This means that our cre­ative fo­cus on craft­ing and award-win­ning ideas is open to our ev­ery­day work and no longer on just 360 mul­ti­me­dia cam­paigns. There is plenty of ta­lent in Dubai and that, along with edgy mar­keters, has a huge im­pact on the work out­come. As for Tonic, I can tell you we pro­foundly be­lieve in the blurred line be­tween the many cre­ative op­por­tu­ni­ties across me­dia/cre­ative/pr. It is this open­ness that brings an edge to all cre­atives in Dubai. When some­thing as small as a Christ­mas card can be­come fa­mous and be­come award-win­ning ma­te­rial.

What ad­jec­tives best de­scribe Dubai’s ad­ver­tis­ing scene and what is still miss­ing/needed for greater suc­cess? It is a tal­ented mar­ket that needs more trust from brands when it comes to results. Good ideas that sell results in the form of growth and awards and that loop into trust and so on. It’s a grow­ing cy­cle.

With Dubai be­ing a widely di­verse land­scape of peo­ple and cul­tures, is there an ef­fort to craft ad cam­paigns within a cer­tain frame­work for the widest ap­peal? Dubai is also fol­low­ing global trends in this re­gard. Tar­gets are get­ting more and more spe­cific and that re­quires more spe­cific mea­sures, like ab­so­lute fo­cus on hu­man truth be­ing a must and em­pow­er­ing cre­ative ef­fec­tive­ness. It is def­i­nitely wise for brands to lo­calise their cre­ative ef­forts, but even then we need to search for that hu­man truth that con­nects with con­sumers. Also, here is where we see how blurred the lines are be­tween me­dia/cre­ative/pr and we can mul­ti­ply suc­cess sim­ply by rid­ing this trend.

What are the great­est chal­lenges fac­ing ad cre­atives to­day? Tak­ing risks. Es­pe­cially brands stay hid­den a lot be­hind old data and re­search that is not nec­es­sar­ily rel­e­vant. It is cru­cial for all to stay up­dated. We need to con­tin­u­ously learn, ex­per­i­ment and make mis­takes. This is the only way to suc­ceed. So I would say the big­gest chal­lenge would be to chal­lenge what we al­ready know.

Are there any trends in Dubai’s ad­ver­tis­ing scene that you specif­i­cally dis­like? Trends aside, we would love to break the bad ra­dio cy­cle that has been go­ing on in Dubai for years now. It is a mar­ket with such cre­ative po­ten­tial. Such great op­por­tu­ni­ties for brands to ex­plore and agen­cies to win awards, but for some rea­son it is a chal­lenge and not a good one. It is dull, old school and bor­ing.

Do you find it pro­fes­sion­ally re­ward­ing and per­son­ally in­ter­est­ing to be lo­cated in Dubai? I am home. And home is noth­ing but where you are happy do­ing what you love, as best you can.

What made you pick Dubai? Gut-feel­ing and the love of risks.

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