Mr. Wang of Startimes and Miss Emembolu od Gistme signing the agreement for the Just Entertainment Channel
Creativity is the bed rock of advertising. To ceIebrate and honour works that have made the advertising industry tick, Association of Advertising Agencies of Nigeria (AAAN) instituted the annual Lagos Advertising and Ideas Festival (LAIF). As the festival marks seven years of celebrating creativity in Nigeria, some stakeholders say the festival has lived up to its billing.
According to Lanre Adisa, CEO, Noahs Ark, one of the new generation advertising agencies, LAIF has indeed lived up to expectations. According to him, “LAIF has established itself as an award festival worth looking forward to in the industry. It has become a sort of peer review platform for Nigerian creatives in particular and the entire industry at large. Agencies feel proud to showcase their wins.”
Adisa, who is also the vice chairman of LAIF, said besides creating healthy competition, clients now use the award to benchmark industry players. He said “The good thing is that clients are also beginning to value the import of LAIF. They want to know who won what and how consistently you’ve been winning. Clients naturally feel good if their work wins. They also take interest if their competitors win; this puts more pressure on their agencies to deliver award-winning work. In all this is good for our industry. All in all, LAIF has been able to create a stronger consciousness for good work and that’s good for our industry.”
Also speaking, Kelechi Nwosu, CEO TBWA, another leading ad agency said, ”LAIF has generated healthy competition in the industry. It has also raised awareness on the side of the industry for awards. More agencies entered for Cannes (international advertising festival) this year
Speaking on the seven years of LAIF, Adisa rated the festival as highly successful. “In my estimation, LAIF Awards has been a success for being the longest surviving awards solely dedicated to the ad industry. Being able to keep something like this going for seven years is no mean feat. The standard may not compare with some of the international awards out there yet, but we are on our way there. We are learning as we go along. Besides, we are still young compared to some of these other awards schemes.
We are not shy to decline awarding work in certain categories where we don’t think any work merited it in the first place. We have been able to establish LAIF as a brand. No doubt, there’s still a lot of room for improvement and we are not relenting. The ultimate thing is for us to make LAIF a respected fixture on the calendar of creative awards not only in Nigeria, but in West Africa and beyond. I believe we are on our way there. As long as there’s LAIF our industry can only get better.”
At this year’s edition, Adisa expects to see more exciting work. “There were some agencies that didn’t enter their work last year, but they are in this year. That’s good. I see a more competitive festival this year. This year, we are also going to have the Young LAIFERs Contest for under-30 creatives. This is a way of encouraging creativity on the shop floor. It’s also a way of giving back to the society as the contestants will be made to work on social issues which can be used later for enlightening the public. I believe we’ll see a LAIF Awards coming of age. It will still be the biggest and most glamorous gathering of ad people and clients in West Africa.”
But Nwosu didn’t share such optimism. According to him, due to slowed activity in the industry occasioned by the economic down turn, his expectations are moderate. Though seven years, Nwosu believes its not yet uhuru for the annual awards. Some areas that need to be improved upon. “The creative output needs to be elevated and have a point of view that is strong. LAIF needs more support from clients and the general public to ensure that it grows”
This year awards comes up on Saturday, November 3, at Federal Palace Hotel, Victoria Island, Lagos.