Indu Balachandran launches anecdotal book on ad agencies

By afaqs! news bureau , afaqs!, Mumbai | In Advertising | June 09, 2011
Titled 'Don't go away. We'll be right back. The Oops and Downs of Advertising', the book is an attempt to get practitioners who are jaded with the profession, chuckle at it and rediscover their love for advertising.

Indu Balachandran, noted for her 29-year stint with JWT India, (currently, a travel writer and humour columnist, who reviews eco-friendly hotels all over India for, has unveiled her first book at a book launch held in Crossword, Mumbai. Titled 'Don't Go Away. We'll Be Right Back. The Oops and Downs of Advertising', the book is an attempt to get practitioners who are tired and weary of the profession chuckle, and rediscover their love for advertising.

"This is a book on advertising for all those who think programmes interrupt commercials," says Balachandran, implying that the book is for advertising practitioners and all who work in the arena of advertising, as well as students interested in the stream.

Balachandran tells afaqs! that the book hopes to bring back the love for advertising among professionals who have wearied of the profession, or even those who have moved out of advertising. It aims at evoking affection and nostalgia; written in an anecdotal style, it hopes to make people laugh and think of advertising fondly.

The book "doesn't contain a single intellectual word", specifies Balachandran, when asked if any brand-related examples or case study has been presented in the book. According to her, it is purely a satire on agency culture and client-agency relationships that every adman can identify with.

Balachandran says her inspiration to author a book was the American comic strip Dilbert. "I asked myself if Scott Adams was ever in an ad agency, what would he do?" she laughs, as she explains the little sketches and anecdotal diagrams that dot the book in a harmless attempt to be tongue-in-cheek about the profession, such as 'cubicle talk' or personality sketches of the remarkable mix of people present in an ad agency.

It contains chapters on each department of an agency (including media), with anecdotal titles such as 'How to Shoot the Film. And Later, the Client', or 'Honey, I Shrunk the Ads'. It also contains a chapter on the obsession with awards.

"When ideas are born, no one gives out the birth certificate immediately. There is constant tussle over whose idea it was, in the creative teams," says Balachandran, giving an insight into the chapter on the creative department.

The woes of the client servicing department have also been highlighted, and how they are pressurised by both the demanding client, as well as the unpredictable creative director.

The book, which is priced at Rs 250, was unveiled in Mumbai by Colvyn Harris, chief executive officer, JWT India.

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