GoaFest campaign: For the industry, by the industry

By , agencyfaqs!, Mumbai | In Advertising | February 26, 2008
Contract has won the GoaFest business and will soon release a campaign for it, which makes use of the ad industry's internal jokes to raise awareness

It's that & #BANNER1 & # time of the year again, when ad folk look forward to sun, sand and frolic. With GoaFest 2008 around the corner (April 3 to 5), its organisers, the Advertising Agencies Association of India and the Ad Club of Bombay, recently called for a pitch for the creative task of its upcoming campaign.

Competing in the pitch were JWT, Euro RSCG, Contract; Contract was finally selected.

The new campaign, created by Manish Bhatt and Raghu Bhat (both vice-presidents and executive creative directors at Contract), will be unrolled in a couple of days. "We received the brief to position the GoaFest as a bright celebration of advertising, which is what the festival is about in the first place," says Manish Bhatt in a chat with agencyfaqs!

GoaFest logo, in its early, raw stages
Contract's idea, therefore, was as informal as the fest. The agency has made use of the ad industry's internal jokes to raise awareness about the GoaFest. "People have started to forget that advertising is a fun business, so we will leverage on the non-serious aspect of it," says Raghu Bhat. This is also meant to be a signal to clients to be daring enough to buy more edgy stuff off an agency's creative shelf.

The final GoaFest logo
The theme of the campaign for Goafest 2008 is 'Advertising Comes to Goa'. The idea comes from the many quirks and insights associated with the industry, and the stories are told in a simple and witty manner set under the Goan sky. A total of six films, six press ads, posters, e-mailers and web banners form the main campaign, in addition to interactive initiatives.

A sample press ad for GoaFest.
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Each ad film will be a statement of a particular department in an ad agency and will leverage interesting insights. For instance, one film is a comment on art directors and their tendency to not read the copy in an ad. So, the ad has a man on a beach where a sign says 'Nude swimming strictly prohibited', but our guy, who is busy listening to his iPod, doesn't read the sign and starts stripping on the beach, even as the people around him look on in horror. The super reads, 'Art Directors Come to Goa'. Similarly, insights from each agency department - be it planning, client servicing or copy - will be the butt of the joke in each ad.

The press ads comprise shots from television commercials as well as some original print work, which will be unleashed soon in mainline and business dailies.

Contract has designed and registered a special typeface for the GoaFest, which will be made accessible for download soon on the GoaFest site, free of cost. This typeface is a friendly, funny one - a collection of images relevant to Goa, to represent alphabets (for instance, an umbrella to represent 'T', or two dolphins jumping up in the air to form an 'S'). "We call this language 'Goaface', and it will be the official language of the festival," says Bhat. Everything at Goafest - the signages, merchandise and the logo - will bear this typeface.

The logo makes use of bright yellow (to signify sun and fun) and black (to stand out on the yellow). This colour scheme will be seen on the GoaFest website, too, which will soon be completely done up (earlier, the GoaFest colours were green and white). Free merchandise at the festival includes T-shirts, caps and bags, with personalised stickers to stick customised messages on them (or even the names of their owners, to enable better networking). A special stall will be put up where visitors can buy special T-shirts and have their favourite messages etched permanently on them.

The new campaign hopes to be a playground for jokes and back-slapping for one and all in the ad industry. Last year, Leo Burnett had done the campaign for the GoaFest, which showed bulbs instead of heads on people, implying that ideas are on their way to Goa. However, this campaign enjoyed less media presence than was expected - it ran only for a short period on select channels. This year, the plan is to air the TVCs on all the main news channels. In addition, virals will be promoted on Facebook, Orkut and YouTube.

The print ads are expected to break first, followed by the rest.