MediAvataar's News Desk

MediAvataar's News Desk

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Isobar India, the full-service digital agency from the Dentsu Aegis Network, has roped in Praveen Raj as Creative Director - West & South. As part his new mandate, Praveen will be responsible for Isobar’s creative teams in Mumbai and Bangalore.

Prior to this, Praveen was Creative Lead at AgencyDigi. Here, he was responsible for winning prestigious clients such as Axis Mutual Funds, HDFC Securities, and Enrich Salons & Academy.

In his new role, Praveen will report to Anish Varghese, Group Creative Director – Isobar. Praveen will also be part of the Isobar Creative Council, which will include Anish Varghese and Anadi Sah, creative director - North. The council will lead Isobar’s creative vision into 2016 and beyond.

Praveen has spent more than 13 years in advertising with a primary focus on digital media. Before joining AgencyDigi, he spent 4 years with OgilvyOne Worldwide fronting businesses for several top brands like Vodafone, Diageo, Emirates and Disney. During his 3-year stint with Hungry & Foolish Intellectual Properties, Praveen was involved in creating landmark advertising for Kamasutra and Lenovo apart from crafting several other independent creative products.

Commenting on the appointment, Shamsuddin Jasani, Managing director - Isobar India says, “The creative wing of Isobar is the heart and soul of the agency and I am very happy that Praveen has joined us to strengthen an already strong creative team. I believe that the creative council will be able to take our work above and beyond global standards.”

Speaking about his new role, Praveen says, “Isobar has a very young and enthusiastic team and a roster of great brands to work with; not to forget the opportunities for collaboration with the extensive Dentsu Aegis Network agencies. So I’m looking forward to working closely with the team to build some serious creative chops and do outstanding work for our clients.”

Anish Varghese, Group Creative director Isobar India adds, “Praveen is a seasoned professional. Besides his ideation and detailing expertise, he is a true blue marketer. He has hands-on experience in blending art with technology. And his stint with start-ups and Ogilvy will just be the elixir to boost our creative squad.”

Thursday, 29 October 2015 00:00

Top 10 Most and Least Respected Brands of 2015

Coca-Cola holds onto the top spot as Most Respected; Microsoft enters the Most Respected list, while Papa John’s, Foot Locker and CVS Health join the rank of Least Respected companies

Tenet Partners, a leading brand innovation and marketing firm, released its third annual report on the most and least respected corporate brands – Brand Respect: The Most and Least Respected Corporate Brands of 2015. For the third consecutive year, The Coca-Cola Company tops the list of Most Respected Brands. Microsoft enters the ranking of Most Respected brands at #9, while Papa John’s, Foot Locker, and CVS Health join the ranking of the Least Respected companies.

The Brand Respect report correlates data determined by a survey of approximately 10,000 business decision-makers and opinion elites on two key metrics that contribute to a brand’s ability to drive long-term growth: Familiarity and Favorability. Brands with the highest Familiarity and Favorability are defined as most respected, while brands that are the most well known but have the lowest Favorability are considered the least respected.

“The respect a brand has earned, and can keep, speaks directly to its ability to remain competitive in today’s marketplace, said Hampton Bridwell, CEO and Managing Partner of Tenet Partners. “The Top 10 Most Respected Brands demonstrate the impact of a strong corporate reputation in building trust, loyalty and increased profitability. Meanwhile, the Top 10 Least Respected Brands – or simply the brands with the largest discrepancies between Familiarity and Favorability – need to think critically about the brand experiences they are creating in the marketplace and how they can regain the favor of consumers and investors.”

2015 Most Respected Brands

The Coca-Cola Company

PepsiCo

The Hershey Company

Bayer

Johnson & Johnson

Apple

Harley-Davidson

IBM

Microsoft

GE

Key Findings for the Most Respected Brands

Coca-Cola retains its top status for the third consecutive year. While the company’s Familiarity is up slightly year-over-year, its Favorability declined this year, reaching its lowest point since 2011. The company’s Investment Potential – the measure on which key stakeholders surveyed indicated whether or not they would invest in the company, has fallen sharply in recent years: decreasing 7.1 points since 2009. Its Overall Reputation and Perception Management has also taken a hit, each declining 3.9 points and 3.1 points respectively, since 2009. The iconic 125 year-old company and Tenet Partners’ #1 Most Powerful Brand for seven years running, is clearly at an inflection point. However, in a move to inspire increased consumer and investor confidence and grow revenue, CEO Muhtar Kent has pledged to boost media spending and brand-building initiatives by up to $1 billion by 2016.

Microsoft is new to the Most Respected list this year, having gained on both Familiarity and Favorability consistently over the past five years. The company saw notable gains across all three dimensions of Favorability: Overall Reputation, Perception of Management, and Investment Potential. While Investment Potential lags behind Overall Reputation and Perception of Management, analysts expect an improvement in earnings this year, due in large part to the latest version of its operating system, Windows 10 as well as from continued growth in the cloud-computing arena, which is continuing to find vigorous demand from enterprise customers.

Apple improved by 2 spots and places on the Most Respected list at #6 this year. Across the dimensions of Favorability, Overall Reputation and Perception of Management experienced the greatest gains, increasing 1.9 points and 1.2 points respectively. The company’s Investment Potential also increased this year, gaining 1 point year-over-year. Among the Top 10 Most Respected Brands, Apple is the fastest growing brand in terms of Favorability. Year-over-year, the average Favorability of the Top 10 Most Respected Brands fell by a tenth of a point, while Apple’s Favorability jumped significantly, 1.4 points this year. For the full fiscal 2014, Apple reported $182.8 billion in sales, setting a new company record. As further evidence of the company’s strong financial performance – Apple’s Investment Potential has climbed the most over the past five years, increasing 8.8 points since 2010. The company reported iPhone sales of 61.2 million in its most recent quarter, well above the 58 million that analysts had been expecting. Aside from its earnings, Apple is also returning more money to shareholders, expanding the capital return program from $140 billion to $200 billion. This includes a $140 billion share-buyback authorization and a new quarterly dividend rate of $0.52 a share.

Kellogg’s falls out a favor and drops off the Top 10 Most Respected Brands. The company has been struggling in recent quarters to drive earnings and innovation across its brand portfolio. Last year, the company saw sales drop 2% amid continued changing consumer sentiment towards a low-carb and protein heavy diet. Additionally, the continued growth of the Greek yogurt market, coupled with the rise of fast-food chains wooing consumers with cheaper breakfast alternatives, have also made it difficult for the company to maintain its strong standing.

A notable trend among the Top 10 Most Respected Brands is that they have demonstrated slow, stable, but consistent growth in their share prices. These standout brands, such as Johnson & Johnson (#5), Apple (#6), and Microsoft (#9), continue to deliver above average, double-digit operating margins and net profit – reflecting the ability of a strong brand to command premium pricing and revenue performance.

2015 Least Respected Brands

Delta Air Lines

H&R Block

Big Lots

Papa John’s

Denny’s

Rite Aid

JCPenney

Best Buy

Foot Locker

CVS Health

Key Findings for the Least Respected Brands

Delta Air Lines (#1), H&R Block (#2), and Big Lots (#3) maintain their Least Respected status from 2014, each retaining their previous rank from last year. Although Delta is the least respected among the group, its Favorability has been steadily improving – gaining 5 points since 2010. The company’s Perception of Management score has experienced the most notable gain, jumping 11 points since 2010. The company’s CEO, Richard Anderson, is largely credited with helping to rebuild the once bankrupt brand. From buying an oil refinery in 2012 to help control fuel costs, expanding the airline’s base across Asia, Europe, Latin America and the U.S., to reducing the company’s overall debt, signs seemingly point to Delta strengthening its corporate image and in turn, distancing itself from the Least Respected ranks in the years to come.

Papa John’s (#4), Foot Locker (#9), and CVS Health (#10) are all new to the new to the Least Respected Brands this year. Papa John’s saw its Overall Reputation fall 8.1 points over the past five years – a key impediment to their performance. The company’s reputation, which also declined year-over-year, may have been damaged more recently by CEO John Schnatter’s public statements that in response to Obamacare and the Affordable Care Act, he would consider raising the cost of its pizza, cutting jobs, as well as closing a number of Papa John’s restaurants around the country.

Foot Locker returns to the Least Respected list after earning its way off last year. In 2013, the brand held the #10 spot. Year-over-year the company’s Favorability fell by .6 of a point with Overall Reputation declining a significant 3.2 points. Against the backdrop of heightened competition from Dick’s Sporting Goods and The Sports Authority, the athletic footwear and apparel retailer closed 136 stores during fiscal 2014. In its most recent earnings report management announced that it expects to have 40 fewer locations by the end of the calendar year. Also, the company announced that it would gradually phase out its Lady Foot Locker business over the next few years due to lagging performance, going from 567 locations in 2004 to 213 by the end of 2014.

CVS Health enters the Least Respected list at #10 despite the goodwill it received when it announced that it would stop selling cigarettes in its 7,700 stores. Since 2010, the company has experienced sharp declines across each of the three attributes of Favorability, with Overall Reputation and Investment Potential failing 11.7 and 8.5 points respectively. While the company’s decision to drop tobacco products garnered praise from consumers, Wall Street analysts were quick to raise concerns about how the move could impact the company’s bottom line. In the fourth quarter of 2014, the company reported that lost tobacco sales caused retail-operating profit to slip by 1.3%.

Best Buy moves from #5 in 2014 and registers at #8 this year. In recent years, the company has struggled to shake off its reputation as a “showroom” and stave off competition from Amazon.com. According to data from the American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI), the company has consistently been ranked as having one of worst customer satisfaction ratings. The company’s improved performance on Tenet’s Least Respected Brands can be attributed largely to its Perception of Management score, which jumped an impressive 11.8 points since 2010 and 2 points year-over-year. Since former CEO Brian Dunn resigned in 2012 and Hubert Joly took the reigns, the company has been reenergizing its efforts on customer service, e-commerce operations and overhauling its supply chain, which have helped to cut costs and improve efficiencies.

Linking Respect to Financial Performance

The 10 Least Respected Brands are largely characterized by having much lower profitability than the 10 Most Respected Brands list. While the Most Respected Brands appear to more nimbly adjust their business strategies to adapt to changing business conditions, the Least Respected Brands, conversely, tend to react more slowly in meeting consumers ever-changing needs and desires.

While Tenet expected to see the operating and net margin rates of the Most Respected companies outperform those of their counterparts on the Least Respected list, the average disparity stood out dramatically. Well respected corporations earn a number of benefits that impact financials including the ability to hire and retain talent, secure favorable terms from business partners/vendors, earn license to operate in a variety of markets and garner increased attention from Wall Street and the investment community at large.

About the data in this report

Tenet Partners’ Brand Respect scores are derived from the CoreBrand® Index, which provides the longest continuous quantitative benchmarking data, insights and corporate brand valuations for more than 1,000 companies across 50 industries. CBI research, conducted for 25 years since 1990, examines the corporate reputations of major public companies in the United States by polling more than 10,000 business decision-makers and opinion elites on the following:

Familiarity – Respondents are considered to be familiar with a brand if they state that they know more than just the company name. Familiarity scores can range from 0 to 100.

Favorability - Respondents familiar with a corporation are then asked about three dimensions that together, form a Favorability score, also on a scale of 0 to 100.

Overall Reputation – Do you have a favorable impression of the corporate brand?

Perception of Management – What is your perception of the company’s management? How would you assess the way senior leadership leads the enterprise and engages stakeholders? Does leadership have a future-forward outlook on the market in which it operates, as well as on the competition?

Investment Potential – Would you invest in this company?

Brands with the highest Familiarity and Favorability are defined as Most Respected, while brands that are well-known among audiences (identified as the 100 brands in the CBI with the highest Familiarity) but have the lowest Favorability are considered the Least Respected.

Thursday, 29 October 2015 00:00

Making Customers Compete for Your Firm

Innovation contests can yield highly valuable ideas when designed in a way that stimulates customer creativity.

Gone are the days when firms could afford to think of innovation as an external process, in which participation was an option. As discussed in my forthcoming book Making Innovation Last (co-authored with David Gotteland and Christophe Haon of Grenoble Ecole de Management, France), companies that are to survive over the long term need to keep growing continually, which means their innovation engines need to be firing on all cylinders, at all times.

The innovation engine is fueled by great ideas, but a fully-formed, actionable, and innovative idea rarely emerges on its own. In most cases, hundreds of ideas must be generated and vetted to get to the gold. This is a game that favours organisations with plentiful and eclectic sources to draw from - provided they are also equipped with the search and selection skills that will help them choose the best ideas faster. This is especially true when it comes to crowdsourcing, a practice more and more organisations - including Dell, IBM, Procter & Gamble, and Starbucks - are adopting.

Customers as idea providers

Crowdsourcing is based on the assumption that customers are capable of putting forth ideas to match even the experienced designers at a company renowned for its innovation such as P&G. A growing body of research backs this supposition.

A 2012 study found that user-initiated products launched through the furniture division of Japanese consumer goods company Muji, were three times more successful than designer-generated products in terms of first-year sales revenue, and four times more in terms of gross margins. Moreover, the researchers concluded that this performance gap increased over time.

However, Muji’s results carry a sizeable caveat. Although customers came up with blockbuster ideas, their hit-to-miss ratio was a lot lower. Ideas submitted by company designers numbered only about ten per theme on average, while the lowest number of crowdsourced ideas per theme exceeded 400. This presents a possible danger, as prior INSEAD research shows that companies seeking innovative ideas through crowdsourcing can get paralysed by the sheer volume of ideas that come in. Because not all customers are equally creative, companies will likely have to build selection into the basic structure of their open innovation efforts if they are to be successful.

The “innovation contest”

To select its crowdsourced furniture designs, Muji used an “innovation contest”, a crowdsourcing technique that has been growing more popular with companies recently. A 2008 study provides a handy summary of how this works: “A firm (the seeker) facing an innovation-related problem … posts this problem to a population of independent agents (the solvers) and then provides an award to the agent that provides the best solution.” Despite being associated with several major breakthroughs, innovation contests are far from uncontroversial, with some observers arguing that they serve as a crutch for risk-averse companies.

Designing the contest

How, then, should innovation contests be designed so as to achieve the most innovative result? The extant research around open innovation focuses on three principal questions companies should consider.

1) How should the problem be formulated? – When possible, a firm should formulate the problem somewhat ambiguously. One study demonstrated in an analytical model that when the firm poses a highly specific problem, participants tend to focus on the most promising solutions and not to consider all possible options. Conversely, underspecifying the problem results in a more diverse array of possible solutions to the problem.

2) How many customers should participate in the contest? – Drawing on various studies in the existing literature, we can hypothesise that as the number of participants increases, the diversity of the solutions they propose increases because of the diversity of approaches they use to solve the problem. With a higher diversity of solutions, the likelihood of finding a good solution increases. However, when there are too many participants in an innovation contest, each participant is less likely to win, and participants may not make much effort to find a good solution to the problem. The firm can reduce the risk of participants’ underinvestment by (1) giving performance-contingent awards (such as royalties or profit-sharing) instead of fixed-price awards to the winners and (2) providing participants with a greater variety of activities, demanding different skills and talents, to solve the innovation contest problem.

3) How should the winner(s) be rewarded? – Again, there are several studies that have investigated different aspects of this question. On the whole, we can take away that, as you would expect, giving high awards stimulates participants’ performance—but each award has a threshold beyond which increasing the prize value ceases to have an effect. Offering multiple awards rather than one big payoff leads to more diverse solutions when (1) the problem is not precisely specified and/or (2) the problem allows for a variety of possible approaches to finding a solution and/or (3) the firm has a significant degree of uncertainty as to whether the problem will ultimately be solved by any of the participants.

The prize for companies

In addition to generating profitable ideas, innovation contests have the potential to help companies identify and form collaborative relationships with highly valuable lead users, as these contests are well-established ways of nurturing innovation. Research shows that lead users participate in innovation contests. Further, in an innovation contest, a firm can ask the participants to supply not only new ideas or new concepts but also new prototypes, which can allow the firm to determine how effectively these participants can develop new versions of existing products.

The evidence on open innovation is not uniformly positive. We lack a clear understanding on whether and how innovation contests can replace or supplement in-house innovation processes. But the benefits of this approach may emerge more clearly once we have clarified the desired end result: not only innovative ideas but also the chance to get better acquainted with knowledgeable and innovative individuals.

 

Authored by Hubert Gatignon,The Claude Janssen Chaired Professor of Business Administration at INSEAD

Source:INSEAD

Wednesday, 28 October 2015 00:00

The Global Awards announces 2015 Shortlist

Global Awards Winners will be announced on December 3rd at ceremonies in New York City and Sydney

The Global Awards℠, for the World’s Best Healthcare & Wellness Advertising℠ announced the 2015 shortlist.

The Global Awards Grand Jury shortlisted 152 entries this year, submitted from 26 countries. Entries achieving shortlist status will be judged by the Executive Jury in a live session in New York City to determine trophy winners.

This year, innovative brands continued to use education to engage consumers. Entries into the Educational Awareness (Advertising to the Consumer) category were propelled to the trophy round with a robust 20 entries shortlisted; other categories directed to the consumer with shortlisted entries include: Health Institutions & Services with 6; Over the Counter (OTC) Products & Treatments with 5; and both Direct to Consumer (DTC) Medicines and Nutritional Management (OTC) each with 3 entries.

Integrated campaigns that engaged viewers on behalf of the brand and in support of causes dominated the shortlist: Saatchi & Saatchi Health Sydney for both “In the Dark”  for client Schizophrenia Awareness/Janssen and “Penny The Pirate” for Luxottica / OPSM; McCann Health South Africa “Breathless Moments” for AstraZeneca Respiratory; Life Healthcare Communications United Kingdom “Resistance Integrated Campaign” Epiduo; Ogilvy CommonHealth Worldwide Parsippany, USA “Disease Activity Lightbulb Campaign” for Unbranded/Multiple Sclerosis; McCann HumanCare New York “Let's End This for Mucinex;  and Downtown Partners “The Luck Plan” for Get Covered Illinois - Illinois Health Insurance Marketplace.

The USA was in the spotlight leading with a total of 51 entries shortlisted. The United Kingdom saw 27 entries moving on to the next round, followed by Australia with 19 entries. The United Arab Emirates was up significantly from last year, with 8 entries moving on to the trophy round. Agencies from Japan and South Africa moved ahead with 6 entries each, followed by Brazil with 5 entries. This year 4 entries from France moved onto the medal round.

The Global Awards expanded its reach in 2015 with the multiple countries earning shortlist status. New Zealand and Sweden each saw 2 entries move forward and Portugal had a single entry shortlisted

New Categories for 2015, including Best Use of Media: Technology, saw a significant number of entries achieve shortlist status: Droga5 Sydney “Game To Quit” for Nicabate; Ogilvy CommonHealth Worldwide USA “B-INFORMED Interactive Table” for Unbranded/Multiple Sclerosis; Ogilvy Healthworld London “AstraZeneca Patient Profiler TouchTable” for client  AstraZeneca; TBWA Paling Walters “Pfizer Enbrel BSR Booth” for Enbrel; and Tribal Worldwide “DXM Labworks” for Consumer Healthcare Products Association & Partnership For Drug-Free Kids.

Also new in 2015, the Advertising to the Consumer/Patient: Promotional Marketing category, recognized entries that empower patients through the creation a direct relationship with them. Agencies with entries shortlisted: FamiljenPangea Sweden “The Cross “The Swedish Association of Health Professionals”; Grey Group Pte Ltd Singapore “Life Saving Dot” Talwar Traders  and “The Horlicks School Journey Initiative” GSK/Horlicks Global Brand; McCann Health South Africa “Roadblock” AstraZeneca Respiratory; and Saatchi and Saatchi Health UK “Real Expressions” Allergan Medical Aesthetics.

The Global Awards Grand Jury, headed by Global Awards Executive Committee Chairperson Robin Shapiro, President and Chief Creative Officer for CAHG, evaluated entries to determine the 2015 Shortlist. International Grand Jury live judging sessions were hosted by the following agencies: Ward6 Sydney, Publicis LifeBrands Resolute London, and CAHG Chicago. To view the complete 2015 shortlist please visit: HERE.

The Global Awards will celebrate the 2015 winners with celebrations in Sydney at the X Studio and in New York at The New York Academy of Sciences. All winners and attendees are invited to jet to the show of their choice on Thursday, December 3, 2015. For ceremony details and to purchase tickets to the 2015 Global Awards celebrations visit: HERE.

NYF Unveils 3 new competitions: Activation & Engagement, Media, Mobile, and Special Industry Award “Best Commercial Director”

New York Festivals® International Advertising Awards is now accepting entries for its 2016 competition.

New York Festivals response to international creative engagement trends prompted NYF to unveil three new competitions to their robust competition roster: Mobile, Media, and Activation & Engagement.

“NYF diligently monitors evolving advertising industry trends to insure our competitions offer multiple opportunities to showcase the creative and technological advances brands employed to engage consumers. While we’ve added new competitions, we also deleted categories which no longer play a relevant role with respect to the work that’s being done today.” said Michael O’Rourke, President of New York Festivals.

Mobile advertising now accounts for more than half of digital ad spending and continues to drive consumer interactions with brands. This new competition will showcase creative work designed for one of the fastest growing platforms. Media was created to honor strategies utilizing specific advertising vehicles employed to achieve maximum coverage and exposure on behalf of the brand. Also new in 2016, Activation & Engagement will salute innovative strategic campaigns that engage consumers via compelling emotional personal experiences resulting in a measurable and positive shift in perception of the brand.

This year NYF adds “Best Commercial Film Director” to the powerhouse lineup of special industry awards. In 2016, NYF will present this newly minted award to the commercial director whose visionary talent and creative excellence is associated with the highest number of award-winning commercial entries, regardless of who submitted the entry. For more information, and to view a complete list of all special awards, please visit: HERE.

Since 2011, entrants work judges by 400+ members of NYF’s Executive and Grand Juries, a brain trust of global creative minds, who collectively cast over 400,000 votes to select the World’s Best Advertising®.

The 2016 Executive Jury, an elite panel of 30 high-level chief creative officers, will meet together May 13-17th to select the World’s Best Advertising winners from the shortlisted winners.

The 2016 New York Show℠ creative panel sessions and networking events will take place on Thursday May 19th at the NYIT Auditorium, 1871 Broadway, between 61st & 62nd Street. The New York Show gala cocktail party and awards ceremony will be held that evening at world-class performance space, Jazz at Lincoln Center’s Frederick P. Rose Hall, Broadway at 60th Street followed by a celebratory after-party to toast the 2016 award-winners.

Entries submitted before December 16th, 2015 can save 10% of their entry fees by using the code PRN2016.  The 2016 competition entry deadline is January 31st.

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