Drugi jezik na kojem je dostupan ovaj članak: Bosnian
By: Silvija Kovačić; Source: BalCannes
We talked with Ekrem Dupanović, creator of the Creative Portfolio, one of the initiators of the BalCannes idea and the owner of the Media Marketing portal. Check out below what he had to say about future plans for the Creative Portfolio and the development of BalCannes.
Silvija Kovačić: First of all, tell us how did you come to the decision to create the Creative Portfolio, and what was the guiding thought in developing this project?
Ekrem Dupanović: I have great appreciation for festival awards, although the opinions of creatives are divided on this. It seems to me that today it’s cool to say that the awards don’t mean much, that clients don’t appreciate them, and so on. And yet there are more and more entries to the festivals.
So, if you ask me, I think the awards are very important to everyone – to those who have created and produced award-winning works (agencies), those for whom these works are created (advertisers), those who publish these works (the media) and, ultimately, the entire industry because they represent a quality benchmark, and they separate the best from the rest. If I were a client, I would ask my agency why not send my works to the festival? Because they’re not good enough? OK then, I will replace the agency, I don’t need an agency that says the works they do for me are not good enough.
On the other hand, the Adriatic region represents a single market, regardless of what some think or desire. We sell most to each other, and we do trade best among ourselves. As companies go to all markets, their agencies follow them there. And still we don’t know enough about each other, we don’t track all the media in order to know what’s happening in our industry. That’s why I decided to create the Creative Portfolio, in which we present all awarded campaigns at national and regional festivals. We want everything to be in one place. So the first book, on 352 pages, showcased 136 award-winning campaigns created by 55 agencies for 96 advertisers.
We will publish the book every year. After five years, you will have in your library five books from which you can see how creativity developed, how the media changed, and even how the agency briefs changed, because every campaign in the book comes with the explanation of the brief, problem, solution, creative idea, realization, results and main visuals. We will also launch a website where we will set up audio and video works that can’t be shown in the book.
And, what I personally like, with each campaign we presented the team that worked on it. This is very important to people who have participated in the creation and production of award-winning works. To many, this book will be the only witness that they have received a reward. If I was a director of the agency whose people are listed in the book, I would present a book to each of my staff, members of the award-winning team. But I haven’t noticed that this was done by any agency so far.
Silvija Kovačić: It’s a book that stands witness to the creativity of a given year. And since the second edition of the Creative Portfolio is in the making, we would love to know if there were any changes in relation to the previous year?
Ekrem Dupanović: Apart from the cover page, we won’t change anything for now. There’s no need for that, as we have good structure, the book is easy to read, it contains all the necessary information. Why change the winning combination?
Oh, yes, we will have one more festival in it. In late January next year the No Limit Sarajevo Advertising Festival will be held, so we will have the awarded works from that festival in the book as well.
Silvija Kovačić: What kind of changes and novelties have you noticed in the advertising world in relation to the previous year?
Ekrem Dupanović: I still haven’t had the chance to go through all the works that will go into the book. My associates have so far collected all the works from the festivals, and we are working on the print preparations. We still have to put in the Sempler awards, the UEPS awards and the awards from No Limit Sarajevo Advertising Festival. When we finish, I’ll review the works and score them according to a formula we prepared, so we could get the 10 most successful campaigns, 10 most successful agencies, and 10 most successful advertisers. Already in the first book we made these rankings. I have to admit I was afraid of the reactions, because the egos in our industry are rampant, but we haven’t received a single remark. That means we did the ratings well.
Generally, creativity is growing, as well as the quality of works.
Creative Portfolio is our own Gunn Report.
Silvija Kovačić: What have you learned working on the Creative Portfolio, and how do you see its future development?
Ekrem Dupanović: Learning never stops, but I do wonder is there still something for me to learn. In 2020 I will mark my 50 years in advertising, and 70 years of age. Of course, I can learn, like everyone else, about new media, about digital, about transformations, about technologies (especially about AI). Uh, there’s still plenty to be learned almost every day.
As for the development of the Kreative Portfolio, I see it as a book in synergy with a website that will have everything that is in the book, plus all that couldn’t be featured in a book (audio and video). Perhaps in my lifetime some new media will appear, that will replace the book, but I doubt it. Maybe something will change with the websites, maybe some new apps appear, some new formats? In any case, we will monitor the development of media and technology and adapt to them. Everything new that comes we will try to apply.
Silvija Kovačić: When it comes to the Creative Portfolio, it is undoubtedly a great contribution to the advertising industry. What is it that excites you the most about the whole project?
Ekrem Dupanović: What excites me is anything that contributes to the promotion and development of the advertising industry. That is the only reason why each day we have about ten news on the portal www.media-marketing.com, and why I work 12 hours each day in my 68th year, and endlessly enjoy it. I look forward to every great project, I am thrilled with brave and unprecedented creative ideas, I celebrate the success of young creatives who will soon assume the responsibility for development of the advertising profession. I am thrilled with everything that means something for every normal person in our industry, and I like to think I am still normal.
Silvija Kovačić: The first book presented the best advertising campaigns of the Adriatic region, awarded at festivals in 2017, including BalCannes. How do you see the importance of BalCannes in the region?
Ekrem Dupanović: BalCannes is very important. I don’t think that’s because I’m one of those who designed and suggested it, but because it simply is so. In one hand it is a festival, but in the other it is not. With it, there’s no festival anxiety, there is no strict jury, which doesn’t mean that the judging isn’t serious. And serious it is. It has something that no other festival has, which is the main prize – that your work has entered the top 25 in the Adriatic region. After each BalCannes, all the agencies whose works entered the top 25 send their PR releases to boast this success. This isn’t something that happens after some other festivals. Maybe we get statements about 25% of awards, but definitely not for all of them.
I wondered why this is so and I think I know the answer. All other festivals give out three awards in each category. So if you don’t get into the first three, it’s ok, because not everyone can get there. But if you can’t get into the Top 25, it’s a tough defeat. I think that all the agencies simply have a sigh of relief when they find out they’ve entered the Top 25.
Here I would come back to the advertisers. Any advertiser in the Adriatic region would have to ask their agency if they are sending their works to BalCannes. I promised Dunja (Ballon) the other day in Zagreb that I would personally lobby for more works for BalCannes next year. But I will not lobby with the agencies, but rather with advertisers who will make the agencies send their works. Agencies mostly have their own math, but this is often not the math that suits the advertisers. And ultimately, aren’t the advertisers the first jury for any campaign? If the advertiser doesn’t approve a campaign, it will never reach any festival.
Silvija Kovačić: Why is it important for agencies to enter their works to BalCannes?
Ekrem Dupanović: It’s important for the industry, for the promotion of advertising, for the dignity of the profession, for personal agency hygiene. Because the presentation of the 25 best campaigns is the most beautiful part of the Weekend festival. It’s an event where there is not enough seats for everyone who are interested, and always one hundred people stand on the sides of the hall. It’s nice to see how a whole hall welcomes the creatives with frenetic applause, it’s nice to hear the comments from the hall during the presentation. Therefore, it is worthwhile to enter your work, to enter among the Top 25 and to take in the glory.
And, of course, it’s important because they will get two pages in the Creative Portfolio to present their campaign.
Silvija Kovačić: You said earlier you would like BalCannes to become a feat of creativity, and now, three years later, do you think it came true?
Ekrem Dupanović: Absolutely yes. There’s still work to be done, a lot of things to improve in order for BalCannes to really gain that festive spirit, but it’s not all up to the organizers. Agencies need to put in some work as well. They need to enter more works, send more people to Rovinj, make better, much better case studies for the works they enter.
Silvija Kovačić: Where do you see BalCannes developing in the future?
Ekrem Dupanović: I would love to see online voting removed, and that works in BalCannes be judged same as on every other festival. The jury meets, discusses the works, and makes decisions based on consensus. Thus, it won’t happen that some good work drops out of the competition. Online voting makes that possible. You don’t need a jury of 25 members. Each festival is worth as much as its jury. Can HURA find 25 top class jury members each year? I sincerely doubt it.
I think somebody should make a comprehensive analysis based on the 25 winning works, and draw out what these works have shown, what can be concluded about our profession, about trends, technology and its contribution to creativity, etc. One such analysis would be a brilliant introduction to the presentation of the 25 best campaigns.
Otherwise, BalCannes does not have much room to expand, it will always be limited and stifled by the Weekend Media Festival. I think BalCannes means much more to Weekend than Weekend means to BalCannes. If they split apart, BalCannes would breathe more easily, but Weekend would be left without its best content, and that’s why I think it will never be possible.
I wish that BalCannes really becomes our Cannes, and that it expands to the whole creative Balkans.