Work created in China was first in focus on Day three, with TBWA Greater China President Nils Andersson reminding us that in amongst all the talk of digital and technology, the simplest ideas beginning with a mere pencil are often the most compelling, illustrating his point with case studies of some of the company’s best campaigns.
CG and retouching company Happy Finish, with an office in Shanghai, are one of the only post houses worldwide to openly declare their intentions in Virtual Reality. CEO Simon Gosling’s lively presentation demonstrated that, while there is an enormously long way to go before VR is widely accepted as viable and valuable, having already completed VR projects for clients like Lamborghini, Mercedes and Subway, it’s so far so good for the bold new direction of his company.
Back on the exhibition hall floor, SHP+ caught up with some of the key China-based delegates to get their thoughts on Spikes Asia 2015.
“It has been and still is the leading advertising convention in Asia Pacific. They have representation from everywhere in the region and tend to have really good speakers.” – Diederik van Middelkoop, Producer, Massive Music, based in Shanghai for seven years and attending Spikes every year since it began in 2007.
“I went to Adstars in Korea which was good, but Spikes takes it to the next level.” – Billy Beckett, EP, Fin Design + Effects Shanghai. The Australian post house established their Shanghai studio in 2014.
On gaining perspective and inspiration:
“It’s easy to get stuck in the grind of our own markets so it’s good to take a step back, see more than just what’s happening in China and hopefully take away some fresh ideas and inspiration.” – Steven Marolho, GM, MPC Shanghai. The world-renowned postproduction company established their Shanghai studio at the start of 2015.
“I like to see the creativity and production quality of the work from the region, to get a feel and inspiration for the best of what is out there and an idea of which of our own productions would be further developed to the award level.“ – Xintai Feng, EP/GM, P.I.G China . P.I.G is one of the leading production companies in China.
“Spikes is an eye-opener. It makes me think about things I don’t necessarily think about day-to-day. It’s interesting to hear the insights of people with very strong track records about how to get your message across and how to motivate them with great ideas.” – Jonathan Porath, Vice President, Technicolor China. The worldwide postproduction powerhouse have had a presence in China since 2004
It’s about hanging out with people in the same industry, sharing information and ideas. We’re very busy in our day-to-day lives and we usually don’t have time to just hang out together. That’s the objective here – it’s not about business.” – Desmond Loh, EP, Stink Shanghai. Stink are an award winning international production house.
“It’s a great opportunity to network, especially get chance to get together with agency friends who we collaborate closely for production, to make new connections and reinforce old friendships.” – Xintai Feng
“Spikes is more of a networking opportunity than anything else, especially for agencies, because Singapore is a regional hub for clients. Nights tend to be the polar opposite of what you see in the daytime. Lots of big agency parties and packed bars in Chinatown.” – Diederik van Middelkoop
“In the venue you might have a chat about a seminar you’ve just seen, but it’s at the parties where you dig deeper with people.” – Billy Beckett
On event value:
“It always unravels over time – you meet you people and things happen, but it’s not always instant. If you’re not here, if I just stayed back in Shanghai, I’d just be doing what I normally do 99% of the time and you won’t gain anything new.” – Steven Marolho
“It’s important to be present with communication, to buildup well connections with global resource and bring it into the china market.“ – Xintai Feng
“I’m here to get some exposure for Fin in Asia. We’ve only been in Shanghai for a year so it’s important to spread the gospel.” – Billy Beckett
Diederik van Middelkoop, Georg Warga (Goodstein, China – a creative agency. Warga was on the jury for the Branded Content award), Desmond Loh, Maureen Sherrard (Goodstein), Katherine Lee (Producer, Stink).
Whilst Spikes may be Asia’s leading advertising conference, the Chinese industry is glaringly underrepresented. Steven Marolho explained why:
“For many, China is the world and as interesting as Spikes might be, it doesn’t seem relevant to them. I don’t know if more Chinese content would even change that. Chinese creatives could easily come to Spikes but it’s not in their nature to be here.”
By 7pm the exhibition hall had already been dismantled and the action moved across to the Ritz Carlton Grand Ballroom for the final awards ceremony. China-based agencies picked up a number of bronze and silver awards but it was slim pickings for the big prizes. The most notable Greater China success came for Saatchi & Saatchi Hong Kong who won the Grand Prix for their ‘Mother’ film for Changyou Online Game Developer. BBDO China picked up a Gold in the Branded Content & Entertainment category for Original Use of Music in their ‘Endless Love Song – The Reunion of Soup and Noodles’ campaign as well as a Spike award for Creative Effectiveness for their Gillette – Scandal Shave campaign. Shanghai’s Fred & Farid took home third place in Independent Agency of the Year along with a clutch of bronze and silvers.
下午7点，展台已撤掉，活动移至丽思卡尔顿宴会厅，举行最终的颁奖典礼。来自中国的广告公司拿下了数量不菲的铜奖和银奖，然而重量级奖项则欠奉。其中最引人注目的大奖则是盛世长城香港工作室为畅游在线打造的短片《母亲》。BBDO中国拿下一枚“品牌化内容与娱乐”分类金奖，获奖作品是他们为Original Use of Music的Endless Love Song打造的The Reunion of Soup and Noodle广告；同样为他们赢得Spikes“最佳创意效果”奖项的还有他们为吉列而做的广告Scandal Shave。上海的佛海佛瑞在“年度最佳独立广告公司”评选中位列第三，而此项银奖和铜奖难分上下。
Saatchi & Saatchi Hong Kong – Grand Prix winner for their ‘Mother’ film for Changyou Online Game Developer.
The conference wound down with a sophisticated finale at the Fullerton Grand Hotel, with delegates enjoying vaporized gin and tonics, a bizarre fluorescent dance performance and exchanging the last of their business cards by the attractive Fullerton Bay waterside.
For an insight into the Chinese industry, Spikes Asia offers little. As an overview of the work being created in Asia, and an opportunity to meet some of the key players in the region, the well-organised conference represents good value. SHP+ will be back in Singapore next year, hoping for a much stronger showing from China.