This fort­night...

The Brand Reporter - - EDITORIAL / CONTENTS -

Ad agen­cies in In­dia are geared to­wards par­tic­i­pat­ing in creative awards. They just love the game. Not so In­dian pub­lish­ers – at least on the face of it.

That is why when we launched Digipub Awards last year for web pub­lish­ers, I wasn’t ter­ri­bly con­fi­dent about the level of par­tic­i­pa­tion. At the end of the 2nd sea­son I am happy to re­port that I had wor­ried need­lessly: nearly 40 me­dia brands have par­tic­i­pated so far.

Of course, that num­ber should have been 100 or more but it is only Digipub’s sec­ond year. And we did see an in­crease of nearly 50 per cent in the num­ber of en­tries.

What have I no­ticed over the past two years? Here goes: en­tries in English and In­dian Lan­guages are judged sep­a­rately in each cat­e­gory be­cause the for­mer has had such a head­start on­line. The en­tries are mostly in English – so if you are as­so­ci­ated with an In­dian lan­guage brand, now is a good time to pick up a me­tal at Digipub!

There have been some truly stun­ning en­tries – I could name some but that would be po­lit­i­cally in­cor­rect. And yet, con­sid­er­ing the pli­a­bil­ity of the medium, many pub­lish­ers sim­ply aren’t ex­ploit­ing it to the full. There is lit­tle in­ter­ac­tiv­ity, for ex­am­ple, on web­sites. Very lit­tle ex­per­i­men­ta­tion is be­ing at­tempted. You can hardly see any at­trac­tive in­fo­graph­ics, for ex­am­ple.

It isn’t that there isn’t tal­ent. But fi­nan­cially hard-pressed pub­lish­ers are be­ing sin­gle-mind­edly driven by met­rics like unique vis­i­tors, time spent, pages per visit and all of that. If they want to stand out from the oth­ers in a quanti-driven world, ex­per­i­men­ta­tion and in­no­va­tion are the only op­tions.

Sreekant Khan­dekar sreekant.khan­dekar@afaqs.com

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