Tuesday, 9 December 2008

Next generation talent

Melanie invited me this evening to judge in a social media panel for this Next Generation Talent competition ran by Panasonic in partnership with YCN.

For the launch of the new Viera HD TV entertainment hub, Panasonic decided to run a competition for aspiring UK creative talent to create a print or TV ad for the new product. From the 60 entries, the Brand Communications Manager at Panasonic and creative agency Billington Cartmell shortlisted about 15; and this evening a social media panel of about 8 people further shortlisted the candidates down to 6. From tomorrow for 48 hours (very short time frame...) people can choose their favourite entries on the website and an ad is going to be published in the Guardian tomorrow morning to that effect.

I had a very nice evening and thought it was pretty interesting for a bunch of reasons. To start with, it was the first time I was on a panel for an advertising competition, so that was pretty cool.

Referring to Will's post here for a second, I noticed the conversation tends to go towards swiftly towards bullshit bingo. I tried to avoid some words, but they keep coming back. I guess It can't really be helped given it goes with the territory, but it's always funny to notice. We could have had printed grids, really...

More interestingly, some of the entries were really great. It was sometimes difficult to judge given a lot of effort had gone into all of them. The conversation kept coming back to what the idea was behind the execution and whether that was something that could be used for an ad, which is fine for the purpose of selecting a winner, but another point I think is more interesting is the fact they have great material for brand advocacy and sort of high level user generated content they could be promoting a lot more than for just one winner of a competition. And the fact that the voting is limited to 48 hours is a shame as well.

Here are the 6 selected by the panel this evening:

'All memories in HD' (I'd say that one was my favourite of the 6)
'Centre of attention'
'Meet your HD family'
'The mess around'

Now a very special mention to my personal favourite: 'The beehive' or 'BeeHub'

It doesn't actually have anything to do with the brief, but it's mad and I'm going to remember that one and talk about it. It would be amazing for some sort of viral piece - or purely promoting the fact that Panasonic is actively encouraging creative talent in the UK, and not just looking for someone who do their next ad.

And even about a next ad, just think again what a drumming gorilla has to do with chocolate before you start knocking off the bees...

Referring to a great post from Paul I read this morning, the competition itself is advertising that does and that's where there is a lot of value. Rather than trying to get a 'professional' ad out of one those competition entries, keep expanding and encouraging people to do and talk about this TV and these advertising ideas and creative concepts - that's more exciting - like the bees.

PS: Neil just opened Think Tank post of the month votes, there are some really good nominations, go check them out!


Guillaume Foutry said...

Really good summary of the night. I do agree with you the BeeHive had something special. Would be awesome for a viral video.

Willem said...

Thanks Guillaume, nice to meet you again yesterday! I'm sure see you soon at another event and we'll see if the BeeHive becomes something...

Gareth Edwards said...

Thanks for the kind words on 'Memories". Much appreciated if you want to talk more feel free to email me...



Gareth Edwards said...

just noticed my email address is wrong



Will said...

Bullshit annoys me, even in the everyday context.

I try to speak my mind, and plainly. ;)