Microsoft has announced the launch of a creative storytelling contest, The Microsoft Advertising Story Awards, which invites marketers from 30 countries including India, to submit a campaign idea for a brand or non-profit organisation of their choice using Microsoft Advertising's storytelling platforms. The winners will be awarded an exclusive VIP trip as Microsoft Advertising's guests to the Cannes Lions Festival of Creativity, to be held during June 17-23, 2012.
Announcing the contest, Neville Taraporewalla, country director, advertising and online, Microsoft India, says, "We have initiated this contest to highlight the wider focus of the business, which is to help brands step back from the clutter, and put storytelling back at the heart of marketing."
The judging panel for India comprises Anita Varma, director, Digital Driftwood, Florist Van Hjeist, general manager, marketing and operations, Microsoft Corp (India), Pradyuman Maheshwari, editor-in-chief and CEO, MxMIndia, Shantanu Sirohi, chief operating officer, Interactive Avenues, and Tushar Vyas, managing partner, South Asia, GroupM. David Sable, global CEO at Y&R will chair the global judging panel, which will also include Maria Luisa Francoli Plaza, global CEO of MPG and Havas Media North America.
The contest is divided into two stages, a local heat followed by a global final. The last date for submission of local entries is March 31. The winner of the India competition will advance to the global finals, where two global winners will be crowned with the Global Microsoft Advertising Story Award for 2012.