For the first time in the history of Dainik Bhaskar Think Negative Contest, two agencies have been declared gold winners. Srijan Advertising and Kreative Idea have bagged the Gold Award for Dainik Bhaskar Think Negative Contest 2009.
Like last year, this year, too, the winning entries for the contest have come from the regional agencies. Interestingly, the Dry Ideas Contest, another initiative by the Dainik Bhaskar Group conducted during Holi, had a regional agency as the winner.
"This clearly indicates that regional agencies are fast becoming competitive and are constantly raising the bar in terms of the quality of work. Also, the awareness level is increasing in the non-metros, which is again an interesting development and really pleasing to our knowledge," says Satbir Singh, chief creative officer, Euro RSCG India, who was one of the jury members. Euro RSCG is also the designated agency handling the creative aspects of the contest.
The Dainik Bhaskar Think Negative Contest is an initiative of the Bhaskar Group aimed at harnessing creative talent to create communication that can be used in print to spread AIDS awareness. Running successfully for four consecutive years, this year, the contest has included many innovations to keep itself different from the other years. This year, for the first time, the contest has been opened to professionals and amateurs as separate categories.
It has also accepted entries both in Hindi and English. Also, for the first time, it has introduced entry fees to segregate the serious and the non-serious visitors.
However, all these efforts have been well thought after to maximise its contribution towards creating greater public awareness about HIV AIDS. Sanjeev Kotnala, vice-president, marcomm, Bhaskar Group, says, "We at Dainik Bhaskar believe in reaching out to maximum number of people through effective communication. By using a creative contest as a base, we hope to invoke a more involved connect with everyone.
"Think Negative Contest is an effort to bring together all big and small agencies on the same platform and thereby utilise their work for the benefit of the society. Accordingly, we are making available the work created by the winning agency for all willing NGOs working on AIDS. We have also collected Rs 75,000-1 lakh from the entry fees, which will again go to NGOs working on AIDS."
The popularity of the contest becomes evident through the number of entries that have been received. This year, the contest received more than 300 entries in the professional category and about 150 entries in the amateur category. The regional presence has been dominant, with entries coming from Tier-II towns such as Ahmedabad, Jaipur and Indore.
While talking about the initiative, Manish Bhatt, ex-ECD, Contract Advertising, says, "This is a wonderful effort by the Dainik Bhaskar Group, which not just provides access to the regional talent base but also makes the upcountry agencies learn effective ways of communication by healthy competition. We expect more such initiatives from the same group."
The panel of judges also included Mark Benjamin, Sachin Kamble of O&M and Raghu Bhatt, ex-ECD, Contract Advertising. However, the amateur category's entries were judged by some of the prominent and senior editors of the Bhaskar Group. The winning entry was by Neetu Methew Prakash of Chennai.