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Campaign Brief (AUS/NZ) Online.
Campaign Brief Magazine : Campaign Brief May-June 2013
CREATIVITY CAMPAIGNBRIEF MAY/JUNE 2013 down." China is still a reasonably young advertising market, yet according to Fink, in the relatively short amount of time he's been based in the country, he senses a change in client attitude. He believes more clients from the region are acknowledging the benefits of going to international award shows like Cannes. "They see great work and are inspired by it and in return, are asking for more world-class quality work. But, as we all know, it's one think to ask for it (creativity) and another to sell it. We need to get better at selling the work and educating our clients as to why they should buy it." Although the country still has a long waytogoto catchuptotheWestin terms of appreciation for exceptional creative, Fink says it's fast improving, albeit with the constant challenge of maintaining consistent quality. Working in a market well known for copying and producing products for the rest of the world, he reveals there is a saying in Shanghai, that says: 'Copyright means Copy It Right'. He believes the copycat phenomenon and China are not mutually exclusive, yet much work still needs to be done in this area to educate the market on the power of originality. In a market where 1.1 billion people have mobile phones and 2.7 million are USD millionaires, (last year 48,000 items were bought every minute on the popular Chinese online shopping site Taobao - with 3700 purchasing via mobile phones); there exists a monopoly of potential. "I would honestly say there are more creative opportunities here in China than in the UK," Fink says. "Although some local clients are not as sophisticated as in the West, they do understand their market very well. If you can gain their tr ust, they will let you run an idea into unfamiliar territories." Despite the staggering consumer population numbers, cultural differences mean that what works in the UK doesn't necessarily work in China. Fink says analogy and metaphor are less well understood in Asia, which he thinks is a shame considering lots of fun ideas stem from these. Although most of the work is very rational, he says the use of emotion in ads is growing daily. "There have been some real tear jerkers, especially in online form and there is much more of a community feel to the way people live their lives." The idea of family seems much stronger in the East, Fink explains, with the family unit often consisting of different generations living together in the one household. "You often get young adults living with not just mum and dad, but also grandparents, so depicting family life has to be done in a totally different way. Plus what works in the east of China doesn't always work in the west, same with the north and south of China -- it's very complex." Culturally speaking, The Chinese are generally very superstitious so the use of the colour black is not advised as it relates to death. "This is a real shame as black is my favourite 'colour' and most products look very cool up against a black background. Hopefully I can slowly win over 1.4 billion people," Fink quips. Appointed as grand jury president at this year's ADFEST (Asia Pacific Advertising Festival), he says working in Asia is bound to provide any western creative a curve ball experience in cultural nuances. The majority of the work he judged at the Asian festival left him with more questions than answers. At times he was compelled to ask jury members to explain the cultural barriers of certain countries, including Japan and Korea, so each competing campaign had a fair hearing. Fink says he feels very humble in Asia. "It's a mighty place that contains half the world's population," he says. "To see so many different cultures and different types of thinking is so interesting. It's a real cacophony of ideas and creative expressions." Since taking the helm at Ogilvy China, Fink has been behind standout work including an experiential campaign for local real estate developer Soho China. The campaign idea alluded to a myth that the Chinese put a monkey into space before the United States but that the mission had been covered up.The monkey was brought back to earth to land in Soho China's latest creation; a space age building designed by Zaha Hadid called the Soho Galaxy. Featured in the campaign were TV news flashes after which the agency held an exclusive 'interview' with the monkey who spoke of his sadness that his country had turned into a nation of copycats. A few days later the monkey appeared on a live 30-minute TV debate talking about creativity. "I've taken a lot of stick about this campaign but I honestly believe it is one of the most creative pieces of work I've ever been involved with," he says. "To do stuff like that in a country with all of the restrictions is pretty amazing. There were thousands of questions on Weibo (Chinese Twitter) asking if it was at all real. It's wonderful to get so many people involved in the story. The campaign also did what it was suppose to do and sold out the building completely." Another recent campaign Fink spearheaded was for local grocery e-commerce company YihaoDian. Online shopping is a major Soho China - The campaign idea alluded to a myth that the Chinese put a monkey into space before the United States but that the mission had been covered up
CBNAT JAN-FEB 2013
CBNAT SEPTEMBER 2013